Big Drive, Smaller Swim

        It's a big drive most of the day: Santa Maria to near Yosemite National Park. I sleep much, so it's not the most memorable of affairs for me. A highlight's driving a section of the scenic, twisting Coastal Highway 1. It's made a bit mellow because I'm in a minivan, but I still drive aggressively enough to get complaints from my passengers. With what may be narcolepsy, I've had enough after about an hour.
        Enjoyable evidence of different travel preferences occurs for Pebble Beach's 17-Mile Drive. I have no desire to do anything involving golf, especially ride in a car around a course when I've been cooped up in a vehicle all day. I crack at some scenic point, called Bird Island or something equivalently descriptive and boring. "That island's near the short. Pull into this parking lot: I'm gonna swim to it." The bird-infested and heavily poop-colored island isn't far, but I have to pass through a veritable seaweed forest. It also doesn't help that the water's surprisingly cold: it really sucks my energy right out. Regardless, I make it the few hundred yards there and back without incident, even sharing the rock with a seal. According to my buddies shoreside, I attract an audience. "Psycho," "he should be a Navy seal: they get paid for stuff like this," "are those (sea foam chunks floating near me) ice cubes?" and "hold on, honey: he's almost back to shore" are some of my favorites. I'll consider this evidence that I'm more exciting than a hold of gold in the suburbs. Unfortunately, I might not be too smart: it's only as I begin to return from the island that I realize my tattoo, fresh from its bandage and immersed for the first time, is probably bleeding at least a bit and just maybe attracting sharks. For everybody around but me, that'd certainly be a better show than the PGA tour.

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