Thursday, February 01, 2007
A quick update before the personal tour manager arrives (Casey's found a new job!). Yesterday was wonderful, if unbelievable; a trawl through several iconic places left me feeling the movie of my life was taking over from reality. Under bright, hard-edged sunshine we visited Monterey, walked along Cannery Row, spotted Steinbeck's name appended to several locations, gawped at sharks and massive tuna in the Aquarium, drove through Carmel (where Clint Eastwood was the mayor) and walked in a coastal reserve among twisted cypress trees with the surf crashing below on the rocks and the racket of sea-lions barking from the offshore islands. A white crane balanced for hours on a mat of kelp and seals basked on the rocks.
I kept being reminded of Golding's description of the ocean around the island in "Lord of the Flies", particularly the moment of Piggy's death. There is an awesome power in these long, deceptively gentle waves; when they funnel into the bays and inlets of the shoreline they foam and swirl with a deep roar.
As we headed for the car at sunset, with a good mile still to walk, a cheerful ranger told us that there was a mountain lion in the vicinity - he'd found the carcass of a deer the other day. Suddenly, the forest seemed a threatening place. We made it, though.