My friend KL obtained two free tickets for the MetroLink train and after several aborted attempts over several weeks, we were finally able to use the tickets last Saturday. We decided to go to Oceanside, the end of the line, and hang out for a few hours with nothing in particular planned.
I took my little Canon G15 point & shoot camera to capture a few snapshots. It was a very glary day with the sun beating down on the white sand and sparkling water so I had a lot of problems controlling the exposure. But you get the general idea. Sometimes I just don’t want to deal with the DSLR.
Oceanside (population approximately 173,000,) is about 95 miles south of Los Angeles and about 40 miles north of San Diego.
As we had been riding the rails for a few hours all the way from Culver City we were both starving. A passenger on the train who was familiar with the area recommended “the restaurant under the pier.”
This turned out to be the Tin Fish and what a great suggestion it was!
My friend ordered the fish ‘n chips but (British blood notwithstanding) I am more partial to fish tacos. I figured there would be one small cut of fish in each taco so I went for the double order.
That was a mistake! Each taco was big enough to feed two people! And look at those waffle fries…
But trooper that I am, I managed to eat everything minus the second taco shell. Oh my, highly recommended if you ever find yourself hungry in Oceanside.
Southern California has been experiencing excessive heat lately. We thought we would cool off by the beach. But no such luck. It was a very warm day.
I cannot be exposed to the sun and I don’t use sunscreen (all those chemicals leaking into my body, no thank you) so I go to the beach covered from head to toe. People are always asking me, when the temperature gets up there, “aren’t you hot under all those clothes?” Actually no. I believe in the Bedouin approach to sun protection: the stronger the sun, the more clothes to protect me from it!
After our delicious lunch we strolled along the 1,942 ft (592 m) wooden pier. This is not an amusement pier, except for the entertainment provided by looking at the waves and watching the people.
Mostly it seems to be a fishing pier. And as you can see, these fisherman agree with me about sun protection… I’m not so dumb after all!
Although the fishermen were no doubt enjoying themselves, the fish, not so much…
Although I don’t eat four-legged animals, I do love me some fish… so what can I say? Fish gotta be caught in order to be eaten…
Nevertheless, I had to resist the urge to throw the poor creatures back in the ocean so they could frolick another day.
The fish were obviously prolific around the pier as they were being hauled up all the time. You would think the fish would learn. Pier = people = dinner.
The color of the water was really spectacular.
Like golf, fishing has never appealed to me as a past time. But I’m sure it’s more satisfying to catch your own dinner than to buy it at the supermarket.
I couldn’t get over all the hoards of people elbow to elbow on the beach soaking up the dangerous UV rays from the sun. In my twenties I lived at the beach, literally, and paid my dues with sunburns and heat stroke.
As we left the pier and walked along Pacific Street, we saw several young men driving up in their tricked out classic cars. I can’t remember what model this car is. Not a Chevy Malibu but a….. oh well, whatever it is I thought it was tastefully painted.
The walkway and bicycle path leading to the downtown area. The train station is just a hop and a skip from the beach.
A mural in downtown depicting Mission San Luis Rey, Oceanside Harbor and pier.
The main drag through Oceanside. It’s a very cute little town. My friend is thinking about retiring there. If so, I will be visiting. But I’m a big city girl myself and all things being equal, I intend to stay put.
Some beach front properties.
We discovered the pink cottages have a senior citizen rate if you stay for three months. Sounds tempting but I would go nuts after about a week!
Bikes, pedal cars and pickup trucks all share the Strand.
Sand, sand, sand and then water, water, water.
I was watching the PBS three-night series Big Blue Live. It is crazy how many animals live out there off the California coast (albeit the show was concentrating on Monterey). Then multiply that by all the oceans in the world. And we humans are solely responsible for polluting those oceans. Oh well, another story entirely.
Another day, another adventure. As we rode the rails, we followed Interstate 5 which was backed up with traffic all the way down. Going home it was still backed up. The train is the only way to go by land. I don’t know why people would want to sit for hours all cramped up in their tiny cars when they could travel in the spaciousness of the train, looking out the window and not having to worry about whether the car behind you or next to you or in front of you is about to do something stupid. I really don’t enjoy driving anymore.
And besides, I’ll take a train over any other kind of transportation, any day! Paul Simon was right!
With the sun still shining brightly in the background it was time for us to walk the few blocks to the train station to catch the 5:45 back to LA.
According to Wikipedia:
Oceanside is home to The California Surf Museum (we popped into the museum store for a look), and has been the official start of the 3,000 mile bicycle race, Race Across America since 2006, and has played host to The Beach Soccer Championships since 2007.
I’ve been gallavanting about a lot recently and when I am home I’m working on a myriad of projects. So I’ve fallen behind with my blogging duties. Not enough time for everything!
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