SoCal Car-Lite Trip, Day 0

Have long-discussed taking a trip down to LA for work.  As part of the planning process I came across a “travel tips” document that said something to the effect of, “of course you need a car.”

Me, replying to inanimate object: “Challenge Accepted.”

My thorough 5 minute test run before setting off on this journey, with rental car in the background

Ironically I started this car-lite trip with a 250-mile one-way drive in a rental car.

You, replying to inanimate object: “WTF?”

To make the trip work, I also am stopping in Santa Barbara.  The air travel options from San Jose to Santa Barbara are not good and by the time one accounts for driving or otherwise schlepping to/from SFO, driving is only a bit longer time-wise than flying, plus you get to see a whole lot of California.  A train trip also gets you scenery, but unfortunately the one and only rail option (Coast Starlight) looked fun but was a significantly longer trip.  I’m already missing a lot of days at home so I didn’t want to eat up additional hours on a train.

Also, to be honest I try to avoid flying (spoiler alert, I plan to fly home though).   It’s a lot of hassle even without kids.  Also, it’s a ton of pollution-spewing to save a couple hours.  Still planning to fly home, though.

So, here I am at the moment of truth–safely ensconced in a hotel that is clean, friendly-enough, and remarkably similar to every other hotel everywhere else, I’m about to go turn in the rental car and ride back on my bike.

Words above were written the morning of Day 1.  See here for details of Day 2, Day 3, Day 4 (Part 1), Day 4 (Part 2, bike to LAX), and the thrilling conclusion.