Sights, roads and backpacks

Hi all! It’s been a while since we’ve written and this is why…


We’ll do a quick overview of what we’ve done so far though…

Our flight from Brisbane to San Francisco was ok. Between the three of us as we probably managed to get about 5 hours sleep. All in all, Amy did really well, so we’d say it was successful.


We stayed in San Francisco about 5 nights, having a wonderful time exploring and walking everywhere. You name it, we did it; Golden Gate Bridge, Sausalito, Colt Tower, Union Square, Golden Gate Park, piers and more piers, seals, dogs, more dogs and yes even more dogs! We also managed to track down three of the top rated coffee shops and sample their beans. YUM!



Next we headed down the coast to beautiful Santa Cruz for a night and had a lovely walk along the water where Jess saw a whale breach just off the coast.

From there we went to Yosemite (we stayed at Pine Mountain Lake) and spent five wonderful days surrounded by trees, fresh air and wildlife. It had snowed two days before we arrived in the National Park so it was just picture perfect. We had close encounters with deer, squirrels, birds of all sorts, plus cats and dogs (which Amy was most excited about). We spent two days in Yosemite National Park and did a three-hour trek. Well, it was meant to be a one hour walk, but we started from way down the park, so it took us three. Tim was in heaven and wouldn’t shut-up about Lord of the Rings while Jess may have prayed to God a few times that she would make it.


(Artistic impression of Yosemite Valley)


(You can’t see it, but there is white crayon under the trees for the snow)

And then… on our way to Santa Rosa, at a relatively busy truck stop, our car got broken into and Tim’s backpack was stolen 😦 Inside this backpack was…

  • Macbook air – with all our trip photos
  • 2 x Kindles,
  • BOSE headphones,
  • Our passports,
  • Birth certificates and marriage certificate – we need these for when we get our visas for Thailand
  • All other important documents and trip details.

County deputy sheriff Gil was called and took our statement.

Gil and Tim

The whole time we both felt really calm and that for some strange reason we felt like laughing. Not from stress, but because the situation was funny and we knew it would work out.

Deputy Sheriff Gil commented that we were handling it pretty well and Jess replied by saying she was choosing peace over stress. About 45 minutes into our ordeal, Tim got an email on his phone from a Christian couple, saying they had found our stuff (the important documents and IDs) dumped by their car in a McDonalds about 25 minutes up the road. PRAISE GOD!!! They had handed it into a police station near Sacramento. So off we went to collect what was found.

With a slight detour to Sacramento we get a new car and we finally made it to Santa Rosa. It was a long day!


(Take two – in the new car, stickers on our faces and back on track)

So, it all kind of worked out. We’re still finalising things with our travel insurance, but almost everything should get reimbursed which is a relief. Now we’re in Redding CA for a while… phew.

A few observations:

  1. Everyone we’ve met has been so friendly (apart from the people who broke into our car). Almost every day we have crossed paths with a delightful stranger who has just made our day.
  2. Americans think we’re from England. Most people think our accent is British, which makes us want to start every sentence with “G’day mate”.
  3. Amy is dog and animal obsessed and can spot any living creature within view. There have been many cute/embarrassing moments when she has spotted a four-legged friend walking our way only to squeal with excitement and scream out at the top of her lungs “Hello Doggie!”.
  4. America’s idea of a small anything (particularly drinks) is Australia’s idea of a large.
  5. If late one night you think about backing-up your trip photos to your external hard drive, but decide you’ll do it tomorrow… don’t wait 😉

So far it certainly has been an adventure with incredible moments, great laughs, amazing people and some hiccups along the way. All in all, we’re having a good ole time and excited to be in Redding for a little while.

Lots of love, Jess & Tim



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