10.23.15//Day 9 – Paso Robles & Morro Bay

Since we were in a hotel, with electricity, cell phone reception, and a nice bathroom, I decided to have a slow morning. Actually, that decision was fueled by the fact I drove over an hour further last night than I had wanted, so I had less to drive today. 

I stopped at Zander’s coffee on my way out of town. It is a small-town coffee shop with a drive-thru. I was in no hurry, so I walked inside to order. The ladies that work there were sweet and made a delicious white mocha! Outside, I noticed a couple guys with their morning coffee that looked at home right where they sat. I’m not sure if they were locals or travelers, like me, but it didn’t really matter…Zander’s Coffee had an atmosphere that seems to make everyone feel at home.

Continuing on my way, I pulled down a side street to look at some farms outside Lemore. An older gentleman in an old pickup pulled up along side of me to see if I needed anything. I let him know I was just checking the map. “Are you lost?” he asked. I assured him I was not lost, just looking for the most scenic route. He asked where I was going. When I told him North  Carolina, he let out a hearty chuckle and said “you’re gonna need a map, baby.” Ain’t that the truth. 😊

Paso Robles was to be my big destination for the day. It had been strongly recommended by a world-traveling-wine-drinking friend of mine. With temperatures in the low 80’s, I had to find dog-friendly everything. A quick Google search resulted in a few pages of dog-friendly wineries, vineyards, tasting rooms, and restaurants. I picked Frolicking Frog Winery, solely based on the name. 🐸 I chatted with the owner, Stu, while sampling the different wines. He also has a chocolate lab, so he could relate to Charlie’s endearing ways. I learned that he has been making wine since ’89, has been producing it commercially since 2003, and how he picked the name “Frolicking Frog.” Unlike some tastings I’ve been to, I genuinely enjoyed each variety I tried. I still had my favorites though.

For a late lunch/early dinner, we meandered over to Pappy McGregor’s to eat on the dog-friendly patio. Shortly after we took a seat, a waiter brought out a huge bowl of water for Charlie & gave him some love. If you want to make this girl happy, make my dog happy. It’s really that simple & Pappy McGregor’s had that down pat! I had the meal I’d been envisioning the whole drive from Yosemite: a cheeseburger, fries, and a glass of Cabernet. Can’t explain the craving or the combo, but it was delicious!

Tonight, we are camping in Morro Bay. It was the second campground I picked, but it’s proximity to the beach made it far superior to the first. Plus, once again, the first campground was full. After frolicking in the waves ourselves and witnessing an incredible sunset, I’m going to chalk that one up to divine  intervention.

~malama pono~

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