William Randolph Hearst is known as a great newspaper businessman, today we learned that he got his start with his dad’s money and used his fortune to build a crazy big house on the West coast; Hearst Castle. It is every bit of what one would expect from a European castle. In fact, Hearst bought entire rooms, walls and ceilings, from European buildings and had the shipped and installed. Although the house is now a California State Park they still charge a pretty penny for tours. We could only afford to tour the upstairs rooms which included bedrooms, library and study. Maybe next time we can do the Kitchen & Cottages or the Great Rooms tours!
To balance the modern with nature we drove all morning along the Big Sur coast. One can never tire of watching the waves hit the seaside cliffs. There are numerous private homes along the path with gates – my goodness what those homes must look like and what spectacular views they have. The California 1 highway engineers need to give some advice to the Crater lake road designers. They seem to understand the importance of shoulders, and guardrails. It made for a very relaxing ride today.
Hooray! for the Elephant seal! We stopped along our route to see a beach full (at first I thought they were all dead and had beached themselves). According to the placard these big guys were thought to be extinct but in 1990 they found about a dozen of them and – voila – now a whole beach full.
Anyone want to take bets on whether we get to see the Reagan library? Let me clarify, see the inside of the Reagan library? Their website let us know that we could tour the grounds or spend our money at the gift shop and café. Too bad we can’t go in the actual library. It is disgusting how many areas we have passed that have barricades in front of them the past week and a half.