We hiked Pinnacles National Monument until we’d squeezed every last drop out of the sun, even going a little ways up the Juniper Canyon trail towards the High Peaks.
Then we needed food. Preferably not the fast variety. Judging by the ethnic makeup of Soledad, we were hoping for some really good Mexican food. And we could tell we found it at Mariscos Puerto Nuevo when the waitress brought out our beers garnished with lemon and a cocktail shrimp dipped in hot sauce. I wish I’d had my camera, it was such a beautiful sight. What’s hilarious is us trying to explain that though this was totally cool, Stephanie is allergic to shrimp.
Since I was contaminated (by the beer garnish), I decided to further indulge in shrimp, stuffed with jack cheese, wrapped in bacon, and then fried. Hell yeah. Stephanie got a massive portion of salty but tasty carnitas.
And we just hung around and talked—for like hours. We didn’t know where we were going to sleep, but it didn’t seem to matter because we had no obligation to be anywhere at any time.
Eventually we did hit the road to Monterey sometime after 10pm. We made it to Salinas, and decided to pull off at the local Motel 6 thanks to their billboard advertising rooms for $39.99. In my life I don’t think I’ve ever paid so little for a hotel room. Plus we were tired.
As it turned out, they had the kickassingest shower stall I’ve ever seen in a hotel. In a Motel 6 no less. Amazing!
Next stop: Point Lobos State Reserve