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Trip Start Sep 23, 2010
Trip End Jul 13, 2012

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Alana and Alans

Flag of United States  , California
Sunday, June 10, 2012

Sun 10th Junecont.

Near enough bang on time, we arrived into Paso Robles where Alan was waiting for us. After loading the car, Alan drove us back to their house via Brian on the way, where we took the battery out to charge it up over night. At the house we settled into our room and after a sandwich for lunch we had a rest for an hour or so. After a nice snooze, we showered and got ready for one of Alan's creations. We were treated to ravioli lasagne with peppered asparagus, cheese bread and a lovely freshly made (by me) salad with blue gorganzola and avocado. Very nice! We then retired to the deck to watch the sun go down and chat with Alan about life and food. When it got a bit cooler, we went inside, had a cup of tea and welcomed Alana home when she arrived around 10pm. After some chatting and catching up, we headed to bed around 11.30pm.

Mon 11th June

We had a nice long lie-in after a very comfortable sleep around 9am, had breakfast and then got ready to collect Brian. Around 11.15am, we loaded the batteries and tools in the car and Alana drove us down to the property he was being stored at. After checking the oil and topping up the water, I fitted the batteries, climbed into the drivers seat and crossed my fingers. One turn of the key and a few seconds later he fired up with a big cloud of smoke that soon passed and all Alana could see was my grinning face! We left him running for a bit whilst checking a few bits and pieces and then headed off checking the brakes as we went. We stopped off at the supermarket to grab some supplies and met Alana back at the house very pleased with ourselves. Back at the house, we had some lunch and then got on with a few odd jobs around the house to earn our keep and help our hosts out. An hour or so of wood stacking and mucking out the donkeys later, it was time for some ice cream and a rest. We then did a bit of surfing the net and catching up on emails until Alan came home from work and we had chicken and macaroni cheese for dinner. 

Tues 12th June.

Got up at 9am, had breakfast and then set about the task of cleaning the van. First thing to do was to get rid of a load of ants that had seemed to take a liking to Brian which took quite a bit of hovering and spraying. That mission complete, we stripped off the old duct tape around the windows and put sealant around the gaps, in this Californian heat it won't take long to dry. Cat did a great job on cleaning the hob and fridge, whilst I clung to the ladder burning my head in the sun. After we stopped for lunch, we went shopping for meals, as we had Karen and Dale coming for dinner tomorrow night. Then we went back to a lovely meal of fish pie. After a few hours of chatting the night away, we headed off to bed around middnight.

Weds 13th June

Laid in until 9.30am, had breakfast and then gave the van another dose of ant spray which mainly blew out the dead bodies of yesterdays onslaught. Around 11.30am, Alana drove us out to Gloria (the Donkey Queen) to see her 1 and 2 month old donkey babies. They are so cute but we nicknamed one of them nibbler as she kept wanting to bite due to being in her terrible twos. In miniture donkey terms that's 2 months! Whilst there we met the father who has a rather large head compared to the size of his body, but it doesn't seem to be transfered to the babies. After that Gloria showed us the way to another miniture donkey breeder that had a stud that Alana was thinking of using for her donkey. We were met by 3 excited dogs that along with their owner escorted us to a paddock with half a dozen miniture donkeys and 3 goats. Her stud was a chocolate brown and as he had a documented pedigree, she wanted $500 to mate him. With some thinking to do on Alana's part, we left and drove to a winery that Alana had to speak to about a wine evening she is hosting on Friday. Then we headed back and had a snooze. Around 6pm we got up and were thinking of starting dinner which we should have started earlier as Karen, Dale and their friend Claire arrived at 6.30pm. Whist they dug into the snacks, we got busy making chilli and at 7.30pm we all sat down to eat, drink and be merry. Alana made a nice carrot cake with a strange orange coloured vanilla frosting on top for dessert which was delicious when complemented with plain chocolate mint ice cream. As Dale had work in the morning, our guests went home around 9.30pm then we set about the task of rinsing and loading up the dish washer before heading to bed around 11.30pm.

Thurs 14th June

Up at 9am, (it's too comfy here) had breakfast and then did some research on the internet for our trip north tomorrow. At lunchtime, Alana drove us to the local sushi bar for our first real experience of sushi which was quite pleasant. We had a few different things including a dish called California that had crab and avocado, but our favorite one was called after the town, Atascadero and had eel, shrimp and a lovely sweet sauce. Alana sweet talked the waitress into giving us a small taster of Saki for us to try which saved us buying a $7 serving that we might not like, which was good as to me it tastes like sherry and is not a favorite of mine. For dessert we had deep fried cheese cake which was delicious and a nice finish to a lovely lunch. Our treat to Alana for looking after Brian. After lunch we drove back via the drive through bank which was another first for us. Back at the house, we showered and put some washing on, then just after 5pm we drove down to San Luis Obispo to meet Karen in town for the weekly street market. We spent a couple of hours there wandering round the food stalls and watching the performers on the side streets. We finished the evening off eating a Tri-tip beef sandwich which is local to this area and then headed back to Alana's. We got back just before Alana, but when she arrived back from the jewelery store wine tasting we had smores for an evening treat.

Fri 15th June.

Got up at 9.30am, had breakfast and then finished packing the van. By midday we were ready, gave Alana a massive hug and many thanks then headed off back on the road with Brian. First we stopped off in town to get some supplies and get an oil change. Then we headed north up the 101 until we reached Paso Robles to find a hair dressers that we had a coupon for. After a bit of hunting, we found it and got a haircut. Thanks again to Alana, we managed to save around $35 on shopping, oil change and the haircut. We only had one coupon for the haircut, but on the receipt was another one for $4 off, so we both got a cut for $16.
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