An hour from San Jose and I arrive at Santa Cruz!

I like the name of this cafe!

This building looks like a bank but would you believe it's a supermarket! Though sometime in the history of Santa Cruz, this used to be a bank. That's why it looks so imposing.

I am spending way too much time in the stores especially Urban Outfitters. It's becoming an unhealthy obsession. I put back everything I picked up and head for the ocean. Hmm.. there is nothing to indicate that this is the way to the ocean and the whole way looks so un-resort.
Am I going the right way?

Aha! I see it now!

I arrive at the wharf!

A school of fish?? No! They are ...

SEALIONS! They are mostly males and the wharf is their resting point along the migration route. I see more sleeping sealions than moving ones and they are enjoying the sun so much I am not sure they are migrating anymore. Plus I see many people fishing so the fish supply must be good. What a life! Ok la, these sealions are super noisy, going 'Ug, ug, ug' the whole time. But but aren't they cute?

I need to build some sandcastles later!
The sights and sounds along the wharf. From top left: Seagulls feeding, a man fishing, sea birds queuing for something and a man strumming a song on his guitar.

Strolling along the beach ...

Isn't he hunkalicious? I sat on a bench to watch them for a while. Makes me want to play some beach volleyball too!

The Santa Cruz Boardwalk is 100 years old! I spent so much time at the wharf and beach that the theme park had closed by the time I got there.

My bus back to San Jose was scheduled to leave at 6pm so I left the Boardwalk and headed downtown. Today has been pleasantly warm and sunny so much so I am reluctant to leave. Hehe, I might as well catch the 7pm bus! I wandered around town and was soon busy trying on clothes in Roxy. Gosh, I nearly lost track of time. It's now 6.45pm! Run!

I made it to my bus station ontime! Thank God! Weirdly, all the passengers were completing survey forms for the bus company. It immediately reminded me of how we avoid the people on Orchard Road waving surveys in our faces and asking for '5mins of your time'. Well, people can be helpful here because they aren't bombarded by requests to do a survey, take a flyer, buy insurance, buy tissue and make a donation everyday in every 5 steps they take.

Santa Cruz is so beautiful - the ocean, the beautiful tanned bodies, the old Victorian style buildings, the shady shopping street. Weirdly though, the relaxed vibe of this place seems to attract a lot of wackos! I saw this guy dressed as a clown walking down the street slowly and smiling. He painted his face pink, wore pink clothes, had pink fluffy balls on him and carried a pink cane. Completely beating the many other wackos and punk kids 'pink' hands down! Kelly says Santa Cruz has a reputation for attracting 'free-minded souls'. Whatever that means, I guess you could say they add local flavour. I hope to come back soon.
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