California I’m Coming Home

After taking way too long to realize that Google Maps lets you drag and drop destinations, I’ve recently taken to adding locations at random and sorting them out later. This caused me to create the following image. The best part is that the journey starts in the center:

California Death Spiral

California Death Spiral aside, I eventually settled on a much smoother, coastal path through the state:

I’ve heard from a lot of people that Highway 101 is among the most beautiful stretches of road in the United States, so I’m excited about that. I had a pretty long list of things to see in California, but in the end nearly everything on my list was on Highway 101, in San Francisco, or near Los Angeles. There were a few interesting things on the east side (as demonstrated in above-pictured death spiral), but I think they’ll be destinations better served on a future trip. A trip with friends and proper hiking equipment perhaps.

I realized today on my drive to work that I haven’t thought about what I’m going to do and see in San Francisco. I knew I wanted to have expensive meal at Chez Panisse, and tour the Winchester Mystery House. But beyond that I don’t have much planned. I’ve been told by many people who know me and know the city that I would really like San Francisco, and I believe them. But so far I’ve been taking notes on what to see in America in general. Now I need to look at one city specifically.

The other day a friend of mine posted on Facebook that she was going to be in New York City for a few days, and wanted ideas for what she should see and do. A flood of suggestions came in, and now she’ll have to figure out how to cram it all into the few short days she will be there. Today I realized that I’m trying to do the same thing for a continuous 120 day period. I’m starting to see why so many fellow travelers have warned me against over-planning. The potential for being overwhelmed by this trip is incredible.

Perhaps I would do well to add only the Golden Gate Bridge to my list and call it good. No more plans for the city, I will figure it out when I get there. I can wander if I need to. Or rest if I want to. This is an adventure, not an assignment. I can’t do it wrong.