Weekend before last, my bf and I and our two little puggymen drove down to “Gorn Rock” near Santa Clarita, CA. Google said it was a five hour drive, but we took the scenic route down the coast to absorb the beauty and natural wonders that are California. I love going just about anywhere with my guy, but traveling together is extra fun since he’s only been in the U.S. a bit over a year and everything is so new and exciting to him. It makes it all fresh for me as well. I get to share the silly and fun facts I know about stuff and he gets to be all impressed with me or whatever. Ha-ha! Our dogs had never been on a road trip before so we didn’t know what we had in store for us.
Can I first whine for a moment about how I don’t know what the fuck is wrong with me that I always have to be late for everything always and forever?!?! I set my alarm, even a second and somehow still didn’t get up until my little puggo woke me up to pee. D’oh! I panicked and text my guy that I was jumping in the shower and would be there shortly. I did that but also had to pack my stuff and Marius’ too! Due to this we didn’t get to the car rental place on time and thus ended up with a black Ford Crown Victoria. Ugh! Don’t know what a Crown Vic is? It’s a cop car. No, really…look at a cop car, 90% of ‘em are Crown Vics. I was so bummed and so upset with myself for being so late that we ended up with this boat of a car. I cried, “I feel like I fucked everything up!” and hugged my fella. He assured me everything was and would be fine and we were going to have a great weekend. He was right about that. Plus, I was emotional and had a lack-of-caffeine headache.
We stopped by the pet store, packed up the car and strapped in the pooches and hit the road! So, my puggo is four years old and his is only six months, but by their behavior you’d think the reverse was true. HIs pup was so fucking well behaved in the car! He is the cutest little thing, too. My puggyman was, well, a bit of a pain in the ass. *Sigh* He tries to be so good and generally he is, but he’d never been in the car so long and he just gets so excited you’d think he was about to burst! For real, he screeches and squeals and screams whenever you stop or slow down or pull into a parking lot. There’s no calming him down, or so I thought. But when I was driving my boyfriend said, “Is it okay if I be firm with him and get him to calm down?” I said, “Yeah, just don’t smack him around or anything.” I mean, of course! And he never would. He was so good with my little guy I was beyond impressed. He figured out how to distract him and calm him down. *Beams*
The coast was so beautiful! There really are no words to describe it that would live up to it’s beauty, but I’m biased in that I grew up in CA. I have rarely been down the coast and can count on one hand how many times I’ve gone down to “SoCal” as I call it. I very famously amongst my nearest and dearest (whilst very drunk) exclaimed, “SoCal is No Cal for me!” but I gotta admit, they have some cool stuff down there. There was one part of the highway where the only thing between the road and the ocean was a short cement divider. It was dark but I could see the waves lapping at the skinny strip of beach next to the road. The ocean at night is just breathtaking!
We took lots of breaks to walk the dogs and keep everyone hydrated. Our second stop was near San Simeon (Hearst Castle is there, if you can you should visit it’s gorgeous!) because there is a beach so packed with elephant seals lounging about that you can barely see the sand. We were convinced the dogs would love it, but to be honest I don’t think they even noticed the seals. They did, however, enjoy the people who all went nuts over those two adorable babies! I guess I’m slightly desensitized to their ridiculous-cuteness. Ha-ha! But then as we were checking out the seals and talking to the people the wind picked up so fast and so hard that we had to run back to the car. Sand was whipping us all in the face and while we were laughing and the dogs enjoyed the running, it was intense! We had to check them and clean out their eyes and face wrinkles with all of the sand they got hit with. They were troopers though.
We made it to the hotel in Santa Clarita at 10pm. The dogs had never stayed in a hotel before and we didn’t know how they’d react. They were into it though. While I was checking us in Marius somehow managed to unhook his leash and took off in the lobby. My fella grabbed him and I reattached the leash, but that little monkey did it again! I never figured out how he did it, but after that he didn’t do it again and everyone in the lobby thought it was hilarious! We got into our room and they of course went into sniffer-mode. Then they relaxed and played as we both collapsed onto the bed. Whew!
About every thirty minutes or so my puggo would hear or see someone walking in front of our door and bark. Ugh! None of us slept well. Finally my bf had the idea to put him in the bathroom (with his comfy bed, don’t worry) so that he couldn’t see or hear steps in front of our door. This gave us all a reprieve from the stress of my little watchdog. He really is just trying to protect us and let us know there were “strangers” afoot. The puppy was a little angel until the sun came up. Then it was “I’m going to jump on your faces until you play with me” time. He’s a puppy! Then he and my puggyman started to play and I was so happy because they hadn’t really bonded before that. It was so funny to see them chasing each other around our room.
Once the dogs were walked and fed and us showered and all, we headed straight to the nearest coffee place (Peet’s) for the vital espresso needed to truly start our day. Even at 9am it was starting to warm up. I went in to get the drinks while the bf took the dogs for a little exploring of the strip mall we were at, or so I thought. When I came out I saw them all running full speed around the not yet open storefronts. I couldn’t believe my eyes! They were really cookin’, too! Ha-ha! When they got back to me and the car they were all winded. Next was some food and juice and then onto Gorn Rock!
When we got to Vasquez Rock (as it’s properly called) it was warm but nicely breezy. It’s basically the desert with these huge craggy rock formations everywhere. The pugs enjoyed exploring and sniffing and peeing on just about everything. It was hilarious and awesome to see these funny little creatures climbing these giant rocks and rugged terrain. My fella was all too keen to scale the tallest of them on his own while I watched the babies and him from below. I don’t care for heights, thanks. This site was originally a hideout for this outlaw Vasquez and later famous for the 1967 episode “Arena” of the original Star Trek series where Kirk must fight a Gorn (humanoid lizard thingy-guy) and even makes his own weapons. It’s also appeared in Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure, The Flintstones Movie, Austin Powers and The Big Bang Theory. My guy is a Trekkie…’nough said.
It was super cool, though, I have to admit it. I’d never really been to the desert and certainly never climbed on these cool rock formation things before. After a bit of a hike and climb Marius was pooped. He let me know by finding the nearest shade under and bush and just plopped. I was dying with laughter but sympathetic to my little guy’s plight. Some other hikers remarked, “Ah! He’s found the best place in the park!” He did seem quite happy to stay where he was. I had to coax him out again to head back to the car and more importantly WATER! Ha-ha! Ohmyglob! Those two little pugs must have drunk a gallon of water when we got back to the car. We were afraid they’d get sick, but nope, they were just mega thirsty. Then we piled back into the car to begin our journey back home.
It was hot and dry. It was 85 degrees most of the day and we were blessed with a powerful air conditioner in our cop car. And if you think it’s funny we ended up with this Crown Victoria, imagine driving down the highway for hours and hours and nearly every car in front of you thinks you’re a cop and slows down. Ugh! Infuriating! As much as he joked about getting us black baseball caps and hand signaling people to pull over, we never abused this non-power of ours. It was more a burden than anything else, though it was also roomy, so whatever. Poor Marius was not happy for most of the drive home. He was hot and anxious and later in the day the sun was roasting his little rump no matter how he lay in his safety seat. Finally at a gas station I rigged some brochures into the window to block most of the sun. He slept like a noisy little log from there on out.
We made it back not only in one piece, but we also made pretty good time. We got back in time to return the rental car and drop everyone off and get settled in before the Simpson’s were on! Priorities, man! Ha-ha! We had such a fun time, it must seem silly to others that we’d go through all of that to visit some silly rocks. But you know what? We had a blast and the dogs did too! It was this big adventure for all of us. I love how my guy is so spontaneous and I think it’s good for me to resist my over-planning instincts and to just go with the flow. I fight it occasionally, but we always have a blast!
Rest Stop: ME & My Puggyman
Baked Potato & Tater Tot
“I shall go no further!”
BF & Puppy at the top, Marius about 6ft, me at the bottom with the camera
Sounds like an awesome trip! I hope we get to go to Hearst Castle again someday! Another place you and the dogs might like are the trails by pebble beach. Park at pebble beach and head north. There are rock formations and tide pools and seals. Also Point Lobos is great.