Monday, June 30, 2008

Central California Trip Report - Days 2-3 (Paso Robles, Hearst Castle and Morro Bay)

Arriving in Paso Robles was somewhat of a shock. The weather was completely different from the California coast weather we experienced in Monterey. In the parking lot of the Hampton Inn, it was so hot that my first thought was to immediately jump into the outdoor pool and cool off. That we did, much to the Brewster Boys' delight. Russell and Punky played this interesting game where they would wade into the pool and hot tub alternatively every 3 or 4 minutes. They loved every minute of it, and I had a hard time getting them out of the pool so that we could go out to dinner.

After changing out of our swimming trunks and heading out to dinner, we found our bearings in Paso Robles, which is so small that there are only 4 Chinese restaurants in the entire town. Of course, this meant that we had fewer choices than usual, but luckily the China Gourmet restaurant passed the test. Afterwards, we bought some ice cream to eat back at the hotel and went to bed early so that we rest up for the next day's events at Hearst Castle and Morro Bay.

Eating ice cream in the main room of the Hampton Inn (Paso Robles)

Watching Mickey Mouse cartoons in the hotel

The main pool, Hearst Castle

Main Library, Hearst Castle

Indoor Pool, Hearst Castle

Hearst Castle is a scenic 30 minute drive from our hotel in Paso Robles. We had reservations for Tour 2 on our first day at Hearst Castle, which consists of a tour of several bedrooms, libraries, sitting rooms, pools and the kitchen. We were placed in a small group of about 12 people led by a single tour guide. The Brewster Boys were pretty good for the first hour of each 90 minute tour, then they started to lose interest and began wandering around the room. It was distracting to have to chase them around and stop them from touching the furniture. Still. it was a worthwhile tour to see and Jenny and her mom enjoyed seeing the artwork and furnishings from around the world.

After lunch, we drove down the coast for a brief stop at Morro Bay. We took a cheesy, glass-bottomed boat ride which the kids enjoyed a lot. It really wasn't worth it, but it was less than an hour long and it made the Brewster Boys feel like they had some fun, too. After the mini-cruise, we went back to the hotel to engage in more swimming at the pool and Mickey Mouse cartoons.

On a boat tour of Morro Bay

Our view of Morro Rock, an extinct volcano

The Brewster Boys view the fish from inside the glass-bottomed boat


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