Santa Cruz

So last weekend Hubby, my little sis, and I made a short trip to Capitola and Santa Cruz, which is only about two hours from our place.  The weather was perfect – sunny without being hot.  We first went to Capitola and then drove over to Santa Cruz which is only about 10 mins away.  I’m trying to organize my Capitola pics so first up: Santa Cruz.

Santa Cruz is like San Francisco transplanted on the beach. The vibe is laid back, the residents hippie-ish, and there’s a sizable homeless population on the streets.  Actually, since I spot way more dreads and Birkenstocks in Santa Cruz, I will have to say it’s more hippie than San Francisco.  Thanks to the University of Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz is home to a large college population.  It’s fame to claim is the Santa Cruz Boardwalk, an old fashion amusement park set on the beach which dates all the way back to 1865.  It’s not just a trivial amusement park but is a vital part of America’s cultural history.  The Boardwalk itself is a California Historical landmark while the carousel and wooden roller coaster are National Historical landmarks.  It’s one of the last continually operating seaside resorts.  I always love going to hokey Americana places like this.

This being November, a lot of the attractions were closed but no matter, we didn’t come for the rides.  There’s the beach of course, where many people were playing around on.  We walked along the Boardwalk to the Wharf, which houses several restaurants, shops, and outfitters to rent boats, fishing gear, and possibly go on a whale watching trip.

Between the Boardwalk and the Wharf, there are volleyball nets set up one after another.  Every net was taken by teams enjoying themselves.  When I was watching them play, I noticed that a lot of tourists, older folks and people with, shall I say, wider girths, were watching as well.  I always wonder what is going through the head of the middle-aged heavier man in a wheelchair when he’s watching these toned and ripped bodies playing sports.  I wonder because next thing you know, I’ll be that old lady jealously eying the young folks!

There quite a lot of people fishing at the Wharf.  You could spot surfers in the distance.

We walked back to the Boardwalk and kinda just sat around wasting time as we wanted to go back to Capitola for drinks at Shadowbrook restaurant.  So far, all of us had resisted the urge to buy a deep fried twinkie, ice cream cone, or cotton candy.  The longer we sat on the bench though, watching everyone else passing by with a fattening treat, the harder it was to resist.  My little sister finally broke down and head off to buy a funnel cake.  Now, neither Hubby nor I had ever eaten a funnel cake (there are no funnel cakes in Holland and as for me, well I guess there’s really no excuse) so I was eager to try it.  It took a while for her to get her order as the machine exploded while she in line.  The explosion spewed dough all over the workers.  When they got it up and running again, my sister got an extremely ugly funnel cake.  And it cost about $8!  The funnel cake was actually quite a lot like Dutch olieboillen.

Next post: Capitola

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