Wednesday, October 7, 2015

2015 Woodies at the Wharf Santa Cruz CA

Each June the Santa Cruz Wharf hosts the annual Woodies on the Wharf event. It's a fun weekend and this year our friends Kendall and John drive up from the Morro Bay area to join us.
View of the Santa Cruz Boardwalk from the wharf

Wharf is decked out in style for the Woodies

This event is coordinated by the National Woodie Club. If you have an interest in these vehicles, they are a great group to connect with.  So what's a Woodie? No, it's not a sexual reference, at least not in this context.  Woodies are generally older vehicles, mostly station wagons, that use wood as part of their construction.

Surfers and woodies have long been associated with each other. In the early days of surfing, these cars had fallen out of favor with the public so they afforded cheap transportation for surfers and their bulky boards. See How surf culture caught the woodie bug.
Woodie with surfer history

Surf boards mounted on roof carrier

Woody surfing on a Woodie

This event has grown over the years as more and more people have come to restore these old cars bringing back the luster of their youth. At first we are almost overwhelmed by how many are parked in long lines up and down the wharf.

John and Peter deciding which way to go

Kendall leads the charge up the line

John checks out a nice one

Woodies come in every color of the rainbow and then some.

Oooo - Peter and I really like this root beer colored convertible.

These Woodie owners have bestowed tons of love and hard work in restoring their vehicles. It's amazing to me how much attention to detail has gone into these cars.
An owner lovingly dusting his blue Woodie

Gleaming oil can

Wow - now that's a clean engine

Some owners have even put considerable thought into how to display their car. We were all struck by this yellow convertible which even has a replica perched on top of the carburetor.

Personally, I am fascinated by the wonderful art deco dashboards, often adorned with hula dolls and surfboard shaped rear view mirrors.

Hood ornaments are wonderful. They simply don't make them like they used to.

It's surprising how different the front grills are as they changed over the years.

No detail is too small - from the license plate ...

To the license plate holders.

Looks like this event has attracted a new fan. Maybe his daddy will buy him one to restore so it'll be ready as he grows into the next generation of Woodie owners.
This young man seems to have found one he likes

Here's one you can talk your daddy into buying and restoring 

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Tassajara 2015

Although I have been to Tassajara many times, mostly for Guest Practice, this time Peter and I are going together as guests. This retreat center, part of the San Francisco Zen Center, is 17 miles down a rough forest service road. Tip: it's best to drive a 4WD.
Entering Los Padres National Forest

Not so friendly local warns us to keep our distance.

Although it's yet another drought year, some late rains have cloaked the Big Sur Mountains in green.
The twisting Forest Service road into Tassajara

After finding a good parking space under a tree, we nab an utility cart, load up our luggage and check in the office before proceeding to our cabin.

Utility cart parked in front of the main temple

Down the path to our cabin

There's the cabin

It's nice inside

Deck overlooking the creek

For the first afternoon, we mostly take it easy in the Japanese style hot spring baths, cooling off in the creek, and lounging around the pool. It's a rough life, but someone has to do it.
Tassajara creek

Natural pool by baths

Relaxing by the pool under the grape arbors

A little before dinner we take a stroll in the flower garden.

The next morning greets us with a beautiful day.
Morning work group meeting for staff and students

Morning light through the leaves

Zen student reading by the courtyard

Later that afternoon, we hike down the creek to the narrows.While we are there we meet a young couple who have just hiked in from Arroy Seco, which is a daunting hike. We are impressed with their feat.
Tapestry on door of a resident

Peter talks to hikers at the narrows

A friendlier local

In the afternoon, Peter hikes up the creek and over the footbridge to explore some of the trails radiating out of Tassajara.

The evening meal is the highlight of the day. It's always fun to meet the different people who are attracted to Tassajara. At one of the meals, we meet a woman photographer from San Francisco. She has a great sense of humor and leaves us chuckling over her amusing observations.
Waiting for the dinner bell

A student fixes a cup of tea

Sun hangs low in the sky as evening approaches

All too soon, it's time to return home. Seems like every time we visit, it's sad to have to leave.
Peter gives a final bow to Tassajara by the new entry gate before we leave