ALLIGATORS IN A HELICOPTER

a pro script reader ponders movies, reading, writing and the occasional personal flashback

Thursday, February 16, 2006

So We're Driving Up The California Coast...

So we're driving up the California coast last Tuesday, the wife and I, because it's our anniversary, and we're just hitting small towns and endless antique shops that all know that the tourists are coming, because everything is overpriced.

(Example -- two old books in the Wizard of Oz series. Neither in really great shape. Marked $75 and $95. Jesus.)

Anyhow, we're hitting the small coastal towns north of San Luis Obispo, and cruising past Hearst Castle (though we did wave at it), and we see a bunch of people standing, looking out at the ocean.

We wonder what's going on, but figure they are just waiting for the sunset, even though that's kind of weird, because it's about 4:00 and the sun won't be going down for a while.

I made a joke that maybe Pamela Anderson was skinny-dipping. Not a very funny joke, as jokes go.

So we drive on, wondering what's north (because we didn't bring a map, because that's part of the adventure).

Only there really isn't much north. Empty highway over every hill.

So after ten miles, I turn around, and head south again.

And there are all the people. Looking out at the sea.

So we pull over, and get out of the car, to see what's going on.

Hell, maybe it is Pamela Anderson. I make sure my wife brings the camera.

Only it's not a naked girl.

It's hundreds of elephant seals, happily sprawled out on the beach. Huge males, smaller females, cute little babies.

Some splash in the water, others roll around in the sand, or chase each other making a bellowing noise that defies description.

All about 30 feet away.

And the big males are amazing looking. The name elephant seal is appropriate; they have these big ugly noses that look like trunks.

Just an amazing sight. A great experience.

So the next time you see a bunch of people looking at something, sometimes the lookie-loos really are looking at something cool.

4 Comments:

At 2:06 PM, Blogger Webs said...

When we lived in San Jose, we had a friend who was a docent at Ano Nuevo, a state park and a famous elephant seal breeding ground. Those are magnificent and freakishly huge animals. And dangerous.

 
At 3:00 PM, Blogger Scott the Reader said...

Oh yeah, don't get me wrong -- everyone was close, but there was a slope, and a fence.

 
At 3:55 PM, Anonymous emily blake said...

There's a place like that near San Diego. You can go down and pet the seals if you want to, but you will be tackled immediately by an angry environmentalist with matted hair and no fear of death.

 
At 10:13 PM, Anonymous kristen said...

the boyfriend and I recently took a similar trip, up to Monterey. tons of seals and sea lions and otters. really really awesome. central and northern california are amazing.

 

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