I caught a wild hare this morning and ended up in Santa Cruz. It's the end of the season. Most of California's children went back to school a couple weeks ago. But the Boardwalk in Santa Cruz is open at least through Labor Day. You will have the place substantially to yourself if you go now during the week. None of the rides had any lines.
The arcade is full of vintage games and pinball machines, but you can play some of the new stuff too. Your camera flash will put the whole shooting arcade in motion for 3 seconds. It's kinda awesome.
There was a time in college when a friend of mine was hanging out a lot with Jello Biafra. I was hanging out with them one night and Jello told me about taking Diamanda Galas on the bumper cars here. I don't know if any of that means anything to you, but it's a pretty good story if you know who those people are.
I have never had garlic fries or funnel cake. My favorite food at the Boardwalk is Hotdog-On-A-Stick where I get a corndog. Or two. I did not have a corndog today tho' because I had two pieces of pizza downtown and couple day-olds from the Pacific Cookie Company.
The Boardwalk is most famous for the Giant Dipper, a classic wooden roller coaster. I did not get any good pictures of it.
I have only two bits of Boardwalk-related horticulture to share with you...
Number 1: Garden writer and blogger Amy Stewart writes about planting her very first garden in the neighborhood across the trestle from the Boardwalk in her fine book, From the Ground Up: The Story of a First Garden. It's a good book!
Number 2: These very root-bound, container-dwarfed specimens of Philodendron selloum.
I think they're amazing!
However it occurs to me that you might not feel the same way about these grotesquely cramped plants, and I don't want to send you away on a down note. So let's go to the beach.