Friday, May 12, 2017
Crossing Over...California's Delta
Well, it was a fun but hectic couple of days in the city. Crowded bar hopping and people watching in San Francisco, then a fun baseball game in a decrepit stadium. We won't mention the inadequate hotel accommodations...
Now it's time to hit the road for more bucolic locales but first it's a race against time as we have 100 minutes to drive from O.co Coliseum in Oakland to the Jelly Belly factory in Fairfield.
It's a jam trying to get out of the ballpark's lot but when I see a couple of cars peel off in a direction nobody else is using, I take a chance and follow along. A minute later, we're whizzing off on Interstate 880 and we make it to the Jelly Belly parking lot at 4:55 when they close at 5:00.
No worries, we're not there for the tour...which is fascinating, by the way...just to run in a get a few bags of Belly Flops.
The Flops are the jelly beans that do not meet the rigid quality control standards of the company. The seconds, if you will. Supposedly, only sold at the factory (but I've seen them online, at Costco, and the 99 Cent Only store), they are just as good as the others, just oddly shaped sometimes.
As I enter the door, I here the announcement: "attention Jelly Belly fans, our facilities will be closing in two minutes." I've been here so many times, it's not a problem. I know just where they store the Flops in the bins, pick up 5 bags (buy 3, get two for free), and head to the counter.
Just a couple of blocks away is the entrance to Highway 12, the route across the Delta. It's a leisurely hour drive through this scenic and endangered outlet where the Sacramento and the almost-gone San Joaquin rivers converse and meander across the flatlands heading for San Francisco Bay.
Occasionally, you'll see large tankers navigating the narrow channels, causing the drawbridges to rise.
It's on to Interstate 5, where we pass the hotel where we got stuck outside of Lodi, then into the city itself. Today, though, we're continuing through to the hills beyond.
That will be another adventure for another day.
Copyright 2014 - Darryl Musick
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