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Friday, November 06, 2009

Rompin' Around - Day Three

Another day, another romp - this time Joann and I drove on up to Grass Valley for my quarterly bio-feedback appointment (new age Cali-fornia type stuff).

My new therapy buddy, Kitie rested on my lap
while I relaxed during my appointment

While I was at my therapy appointment, Joann blew some cash at a new age Hippy shop. That was followed by a visit to the historic Holbrooke Hotel a couple of doors down where she worked off a few rows on her baby blanket project. I joined her later in the library at the Holbrooke for a cup of clam chowder and a cheeseburger. Joann enjoyed the basil fettachine - I nicked a taste - Yummy.
Joann enjoyed her visit at Grass Valley's Holbrooke Hotel

Following lunch I stopped in at the local food coop so I could pick up some much needed vitamins - blew more $ than Joann did on jewelry! Then we drove the long way home, along HWY 49 and through Auburn. There were several nice painted murals in town, some on the sides of buildings.
There was a cool mural painted over a gun/pawn/whatever shop. It depicted the giant water canons used by ambitious/lazy miners who washed away entire hills to break out gold ore. Totally the most destructive, albeit interesting method of gold mining - ever.

Nice Mural of Gold Rush Water Canons

Drive-by shot of Auburn Mural

A half hour and miles & miles of twisted mountain roads lead us along HWY 49 and over to Coloma's Gold Discovery State Park. The State Park commemorates where Sutter actually made his 1849 discovery of gold, Gold, GOLD!

Sutter's Gold Mill

Everyone knows, the gold lined a few pockets but tore the crap up out of the local Indian tribes.

And bugger all if the Gold Discovery Museum wasn't closed
forcing me to shoot this through the front doors

Cedar Huts in a Re-created Nisenan Village

We didn't exactly hike at Discovery Park, but we saw loads of interesting knick-nacks in the tiny town.
Warrior on Horseback just outside a gew-gaw shop

My favorite gew-gaw, the rocking horse Connestoga

Totally enjoyed the drive. It rained a bit, but not much. We made it back to Fair Oaks but weren't quite ready to go home yet - so we headed for the American River for a rip-snortin', river rock tearing up visit. Danged if we didn't discover the River is CLOSED! The turkey's were still roaming round, but somehow having access closed to the river was pretty sad. It's all the economics of keeping parks open these days. The river will re-open in the spring though.

Along our usual drive, we saw an adorably tiny Mule Deer buck with pitiful little antlers - barely a double pronger. He kept peering into the shrubbery, stamping a bit and looking timid, but intent.

The low buck on the totem pole

What the small buck was looking at made himself known, as a buck with sizable rack came out of the shrubbery. He was a looker! Quite handsome, the lord of the woods. The movements were all too quick for getting a decent shot, but you can see him below, his antlers were fairly large.

Grand Poo-bah, Lord of the Woods

The bucks shinnied back into the shrubbery and there was a ruckus as we realized what the confrontation was all about - a sweet, gentle doe. She did the doe equivalent of dropping a white hankie on the ground and the large buck chased off the smaller one. I thought things couldn't get any more interesting and then along came a small herd of bicyclists - a man and his children.
"DEER?" shouted the man, as his passel of mini-bicyclists rode past.

"Yes," said I, irritated beyond believe but I guess, live and let live. Off in the distance, Joann and I could see the three deer, led by the doe, who leapt so high she could have easily cleared a 6 foot fence.

As the man and his kids rode off, Joann and I did our classic, 'wise women of the village' head shakes. We know that sometimes you just have to slow down and have a look-see.

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