Day Two in the Wine Country: Slantways
- The marker-bell for Mission Santa Ines, founded 1804. In the town of Solvang.
- The bell tower of the Mission church, with the ever-present cactus.
- A statue of Fr. Junipero Serra, controversial missionary, in the courtyard of the Mission.
- The Mission is an acting church, and the people who belong to the cars are here for 9:30 Sunday mass. To the left of the
bell tower is the entrance to the church - but it stretches back, not to the left. To the left is a long building hosting many other offices and rooms and so on.
- Solvang, the improbably Danish village in the middle of the baked central Californian coast. Settled by Danish settlers around 1811. Apparently they have an ordinance requiring building owners to paint cross-hatches on all buildings. There are 4,000 Danish bakeries in town.
- A rather cute restaurant, with coats of arms, and storks grafted to the roof.
- Tell me if I should stop now, with the quaint shots of Olde Denmarke. Note wrought-iron sign, Danish flag (red with white cross) and in the back - could it be arms of a windmill?
- Yes! A windmill! Someone clarify for me if the Danes use windmills or if that's the Dutch.
- The countryside is gorgeous, untamed, natural - it looks like wild California the way it looks all across the state (or as the Senate would say, "up and down.") Only 5 minutes outside of town, you're in pure country. Usually there was no one before me or after me on the road as I drove from small winery to small winery.
- The view you get when you clamber up a short but steep path in back of Zaca Mesa winery (recommended, both the scramble and the winery.)
- A huge and tall cactus in Los Olivos, a small town also known as the home of Michael Jackson's Neverland ranch. Note: there is no evidence of this, and I only know it from random internet searches on "Los Olivos" before I left, planning my trip. Los Olivos is full of art galleries and upscale cafes and restaurants and at least six wine-tasting storefronts.
Last modified: June 21, 2005