I have no motivation or desire to write this post. Call it a case of the Mondays or another in a long line of blogging doldrums, but I’m just not in the mood. However, since I promised a post recapping my escapades from last week I feel obligated to write something.
So, my friend Mike attended a wedding in Sonoma on Saturday of last week. I drove up to Sonoma on Sunday and our plan was to hang out for a few days, fish, drink, and catch up. On Sunday, we hit several wineries for tastings, including Ravenswood, Domaine Carneros (beautiful location, if nothing else), Castle, and Mario Andretti’s vineyard. Mike really enjoyed himself. I had a nice time and saw some pretty country, but I’m just not into wines enough to really get into the whole tasting experience. We finished off the day at Fume, a decent bistro on the outskirts of Sonoma, and headed back to Nevada that night.
On Monday, we headed for the Walker River near the Pickel Meadows Marine Base. The USMC conducts mountain warfare training in the region, but we came for the fishing. We would have had better luck with the Marines, because the river was moving too fast and the water was too high for fishing. I did see some deer, though, and a cool yellow snake, some hawks, a pair of seagulls, and an eagle.
After the unsuccessful day on the river, we headed back to my house, cleaned ourselves up and headed to Stateline, NV / South Lake Tahoe. We cruised through the casinos and finally found a place to hang out, drink, and enjoy a nice view of the lake. We ended up at “19” the penthouse bar and restaurant at Harvey’s. Not much to say about that. It was a relaxing and potentially romantic environment, but it’s charms were mostly wasted on Mike and me – except that Mike fell hard for the bartender.
From “19” we headed to “Cabo Wabo” – Sammy Hagar’s “signature” cantina. Having an entire restaurant dedicated to the exploits of the Red Rocker is akin to having… well to having a bar dedicated to the exploits of my next-door neighbor, or Milbarge, or that guy who sells cotton candy at the county fair. It’s a bit much. Not that that stopped us from enjoying ourselves. Mike decided that we should celebrate my 30th birthday (which was almost 8 months ago) with numerous rounds of margaritas and beers – and we did so. This turned the final moments of my evening into a rather unpleasant experience, but such is life. In case you are curious, though, it’s not a good thing to have a black eye because you puked so hard you burst a blood vessel in your face. Not good at all. Not attractive either, but I digress.
From “Cabo Wabo” we headed to “Club Nero” – the “hottest” nightclub in Tahoe. Well la dee da. Color me unimpressed. I spent most of the night severely buzzed and text messaging someone very special with whom I would rather have spent the evening. Anyway, after “Nero” we called it a night and I crawled into bed around 2:30 am.
The next morning (and by “morning” I mean “early afternoon”), we decided to head back up to the lake and do some kayaking. We put in a couple of hours on the water and got a good workout. * After that, Mike convinced me to return to “19” in hopes of seeing his beloved again. Sure enough, she was there, but she would not come over and talk to Mike until I left him alone at the bar and wandered over to look out the windows. Then, the two of them seemed like best friends. Nothing came of it, from what I could tell, but Mike seemed to enjoy himself. I enjoyed my $10 Jack and Cokes and spent most of the time (thankfully) on the phone.
* Between kayaking and “19” we tried to eat dinner at “Riva Grill.” We finally got a check two and one-half hours after we were seated, two cold hamburgers and no drink refills after we ordered, a waitress who abandoned us for the first wives club party of nine, and a valet (mandatory & free valet at this place, mind you) who later threw a cup of ice on us because we did not tip him. Why no tip? Because he gave me my keys and we walked out to the car. I’m not giving anyone money for holding my keys while their restaurant gives me shitty service and a cold, plain $14 hamburger. It’s just not going to happen. Also, when one throws ice at a restaurant patron because one didn’t get a tip, one is a pussy. Say something to my face, if you feel you’ve been wronged, but don’t act entitled to a tip because you held my keys for 2 hours at a MANDATORY valet parking lot.
We left town on Wednesday morning and headed for San Francisco. Mike had to catch a flight out of SFO, but it didn’t leave until late in the evening. That left us with most of the day to check out the city. We drove through the Marin headlands and out toward the Bonita Point Lighthouse (which was closed). Good Lord was it cold out there! There was a lot of fog, so our sight-seeing was very nearsighted. From Marin, we headed to Twin Peaks, hoping for a clearer view of the city. No such luck. Still foggy, still cold. Same story at the Cliff House where we had a decent meal and much better service than the night before. We headed south for San Jose, I dropped Mike off with plenty of time to get through security, and made my way through Oakland and Sacramento and back home without incident.