Maree & Jack do Mexico, Cuba and California travel blog

Link observatory in the clouds

Jack and Anthony freezing

Memorial to Jeanne

In the rose garden at Joseph Grant Park

Somewhat dilapated farmhouse, it has potential if someone has the money.

Grand old tree

View of San Jose from Mt Hamilton Rd

San Francisco

Anthony collected us from the hotel at 10am and drove us back to his place in San Jose. His house, in the very un-American street called Half Pence Way, not far from Farthing Way and Half Crown Way, is overlooked by lovely green hills. By now my eyes were really paining me so we stopped by a local drug store to try to get some Brolene ointment. Unfortunately no eye treatment is available without a prescription. As I didn't have a local doctor it was suggested that I see the local nurse-practitioner who had an office in the drug store. Cost would be $129 but this was better than the upwards of $300 that Anthony thought a doctor's visit might cost.

I had to enter my details into a booking computer which would then put me onto a wait list and contact me via Anthony's phone when the nurse was free. I could see that she had lunch scheduled and that I wouldn't get in till about 2pm so we decided to go to the airport to pick up our hire car. We were given a Hyundai Veloster in a painless and quick process that had us back in time for my appointment. The nurse-practitioner took my details and made a quite thorough examination before prescribing something for my eyes and something to deal with my sore throats and cough. She forwarded the prescription to the drug store, of course, but when I went to pick up the items I found that both were out of stock so the pharmacist had to call her back to get alternatives.

We next drove to the local Great Mall to see if we could find some Keen brand sandals. No luck in this regard. But Maree found another long sleeved T-shirt for herself and I found an inexpensive but nice puffy jacket for the coming low temperatures in Yosemite and Lake Tahoe. We returned to Anthony's place, had a nice dinner of salmon, potatoes and salad before retiring to bed.

Next day, Anzac Day, we set off for a drive to give me practice under Anthony's supervision. We headed to Link Observatory on Mount Hamilton about 24 miles from San Jose. The road through the hills was narrow, steep and winding and I wished that I was on my bike instead of in the car. I believe that Kevin Russell did this ride when he was here on one of his trips. Unfortunately when we got to the observatory it was in cloud and the promised great views were not there. I was very glad of my purchased puffy jacket as it was pretty cold up there as well. In addition the observatory and museum are only open from Thursday to Sunday so we had to make do with just walking around the outside. At the top there was a memorial to Jeanne Meadows who, as a 65 year old, cycled up to the top of the mountain six times. Good on her!!

On our way back down we stopped at an old farm house which is now a somewhat dilapidated state national park. There were heaps of ground squirrels and lots of evidence of wild pigs which had churned up the grounds.

Back in San Jose we stopped at another mall where there was supposed to be a shop selling Keen shoes. Unfortunately Google was out of date as that shop is no longer there. We took the opportunity to have a coffee before returning to Anthony's at about 3 pm. I found the driving fairly easy and didn't make any mistakes as to which side of the road to drive on. The roads in San Jose are nicely wide and, except for the freeways, don't have too much traffic. The only time I found myself on the wrong side of the road was on two-way sections of roads in car parks. I kept turning into the wrong direction but Maree and Anthony soon had me on the straight and narrow. I'm sure that Maree will make sure that I "look left, drive right".

We will leave all of our cycling gear and other unnecessary items with Anthony and only travel with one suitcase for our road trip which starts tomorrow.

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