Starting June 20, 2012 - Cathy Pritchett and Laurie Little will start an "American Pilgrimage" and ride 887.1 miles in 26 days. They will ride their bikes to all 21 of the California Missions, starting north in Sonoma and moving south, one mission at a time!
Wednesday, July 11, 2012
Santa Barbara Sunshine
Reluctantly we left Refugio Beach. From our beach front campsite we'd been hypnotized by rhythmic surf, watched dolphins dive and jump, and marveled that pelicans don't bend their beaks when they fold their wings and splash into the water with such force. Despite all this marine entertainment we packed and left. Most of the day we rode on coastal bikepaths, some old but scenic, others more urban without a water view. As usual google bike directions failed us on UCSB campus, but a student directed back onto bike trail which took us to within 2 miles of the mission.
Unprepared for the last 2 miles of uphill through heavy traffic and narrow streests we arrived at the mission, in an urban induced state of seni-conciousness; thirsry, sweaty and flustered. Sitting in the quiet, cool church surrounded by the unique blend of catholic icons and native american sensibility which are the hallmark of the california missions I felt like a true pilgrim. Sanctuary. Retreat. Succor. Peace. I think the Padres achieved their aim.
Fortunately the final 2 miles to the hotel were downhill and although crowded, and noisy the thought of showers and real beds with real sheets infused us with unstoppable forward momentum.