|Red Chair Travels||
The Red Chair got a chance to view a live volcano for the very first time! Mount Konocti resides just opposite the Featherbed Railroad Bed and Breakfast Resort on Clear Lake. Although it is not an actively erupting volcano it is still plenty active with the largest geothermal energy plant in the US using the hot underground forces to create clean, renewable energy with water filtered from waste water. How cool!
Day four at the Hidden Oak Inn held quite a surprise for our Red Chair, a chance to try Crossfit! The Red Chair felt quite confident and headed to EA's Crossfit gym to conquer the WOD. The Red Chair let loose with some light jogging, kettle bell swings, a few pull ups, push ups, and some tire flipping outside. The grueling workout over, the Red Chair suddenly became the class's most popular participant. Red was the star of the morning and took a whole bunch of celebration selfies with all of the other Crossfitters at the gym.
The Red Chair Travels always loves celebrating the holidays! It is a time for fun decorations, appreciating wonderful friends and family, and best of all the food is amazing of course! Red is awful lucky to be traveling for the holidays because it gets a chance to experience how other people prepare for the holidays and how they celebrate. Here Red is admiring the 12 foot Christmas tree at the Brewery Gulch Inn, beautifully decorated with ornaments from around the world and many on loan from the local benefactor, Sallie Mac! Maybe Red will go buy a few to add to the Christmas tree back home next year!
After the morning out and about in Pascagoula, MS, Red decided it was time for a lunch break before heading back to the Grand Magnolia Ballroom & Suites. The Red Chair and innkeeper Amy headed to Scranton’s Restaurant in the Historic Downtown District of Pascagoula. For over three decades, Scranton’s has been serving exceptional cuisine in a unique, casual dining atmosphere. Located in a historic, early 1920’s building listed on the National Register of Historic Places, Scranton’s once housed the town’s firehouse and city hall. Guests are welcome to browse the premises and peek inside the old town vault, dine in the spot where the mayor once conducted business, touch the bars of the town’s original jail cell and glimpse the bright red door that once opened to the sound of fire trucks heading out to save the day. Scranton’s is a must stop dining experience when traveling anywhere on the Mississippi Gulf Coast.
It was the Luck of the Irish when John & Daniel Murphy first established Murphys in 1848. They had no idea that their luck would make Murphys one of California’s richest gold “diggins,” or that Murphys would forever be known as the historic “Queen of the Sierra.” The Luck of the Irish continues to run through the town…Red was quite taken with the giant shamrocks painted in the middle of the road down Main Street, and just had to go out and sit in the middle of the one in front of the Dunbar House. Just follow the green painted strip in the road from shamrock to shamrock to find your good luck …or maybe even a pot of gold!
The Red Chair Travels always loves learning about the history of each place it visits! Each different place is extremely unique in its stories and beginnings, which is quite charming when you get to experience it first hand. This stop to Lockeford, CA, was no exception!
While visiting the Inn at Locke House Bed and Breakfast, Innkeeper Lani decided to take the Red Chair to see the Civil War Re-Enactment that was taking place on the nearby old Lockeford School House grounds. Here the Red Chair invited a Chinese gentleman to have a seat so he could share all of the interesting stories about Chinese life in Lockeford during the Civil War. It was surprising to learn that a single Chinese mason constructed the water tower on the Locke House property! Dr. Locke actually had several Chinese workers on his farms and had given them space to operate their laundry business in his warehouses. After many captivating stories Red thanked the kind man and decided to wander around the encampment and met two soldiers of the frontier army displaying the confederate flag they had just captured. They told Red that Dr. Locke was a staunch Yankee and that Lockeford had supporters of both the Union and the Confederacy, but the confederate supporters kept silent about their allegiances. It was quite a fun and exciting day learning all about this towns history and interacting with all of the interesting people who partake in this great event!
Not one to skip a meal (or a beautiful view), the Red Chair headed for lunch at The Restaurant at JUSTIN. Red dined on the popular House Ground Angus Burger and Fries paired with ISOSCELES while gazing out onto our Chef’s Garden just steps away. Absolutely delicious!
Red decided that having been to the popular tourist destinations, it was about time to try visiting some of the less touristy and more local hidden gems. After speaking with the hotel staff of the Golden Gate Hotel and some locals on the street, Red found out about some interesting walks. Lover's Lane used to connect the Spanish presidio to the mission, but was later used by US soldiers to visit their lovers and families away from the barracks. Parallel to Lover's Lane is an interesting piece of art called Wood Line. This is one of Andy Goldsworthy's famous natural sculptures. Off of another tip, Red explored Diamond Height's Billy Goat Hill. Along with amazing views of the city, there is a hidden rope swing that swings brave riders over the hillside looking down on steep hiking trails. Next it was off to discover the fairy doors that have popped up around Golden Gate Park, and Red spotted one! Another unique hike recommended that Red should check out was the Moraga Mosaic Steps. It definitely made for an interesting walk! Lastly it was off to the top of Twin Peaks. This hike was to the top of one of San Francisco's tallest of the many hills. Not a bad view at all!
Each evening during the Red Chair's stay at the Landis Shores Oceanfront Inn in Half Moon Bay, CA, Red joined the other guests for a complementary wine tasting featuring wines from their extensive award winning wine cellar. Their wine cellar was like the one of Red's dreams filled with some of the most amazing wines. The Red Chair found that the best of all about the evening tastings was that if you find one you enjoy they are available for purchase! Since Red had so much fun wine tasting, Innkeeper Ellen suggested going to some of the local wineries such as Barterra Winery, La Nebbia Winery, and Half Moon Bay Wine & Cheese Co in Half Moon Bay, Thomas Fogarty Winery in Woodside, and Clos de la Tech in La Honda. There are plenty more wineries through out the nearby Santa Cruz Mountains AVA too but unfortunately Red could not visit them all during this stay, more to do for next time!