A group of old and new BAMA friends gathered early on a Saturday morning in Pleasanton for a day of backroad adventures on California’s scenic highways and byways. A total of 21 Miatas and 30+ people joined in on the fun-paced journey. We got started with conversations and coffee at Starbucks while welcoming new members and catching up with longtime friends. We were delighted to see serveral established members participate in the day’s drive. Gary (VP) presided over the driver’s meeting reminding everyone of the rules of the road, no speeding, arms up when spotting a bicyclist, lights on, and how to follow the leader and sweep car when pulling out onto the road after a regroup stop. Matt and David the first time leaders of a BAMA drive gave a brief overview of the days events and we were off on the day’s adventure.
We survived the freeway traffic and once off the main highways were treated to vistas of rolling hills of golden grasses that help give California the name “Golden State”. The rolling hills gave way to beautiful lush green trees, farmland with saplings and vineyards full of grapes not yet ready for harvesting. We saw sheep, dozens of goats along a highway fence, many cows, and enjoyed the special aroma of farmland. We passed the slowly churning wind turbines generating electrical power for the state. Every now and then we spotted a palm tree or two just to let us know, yes, we’re still in California.
Our first stop was in Rio Vista for a pit stop and a visit to a bakery, but the town decided to have a carnival in its center that left little parking for our large bevy of cars. We regrouped and headed to our lunch designation in the small town of Isleton. All 30+ of us lined up outside of the My Sweet BBQ to place our orders. A neighboring establishment opened its doors to accommodate our crowd. We enjoyed touring the little town and visiting small unique shops while waiting for our lunch. Conversations led to learning about summer vacations in Bryce & Grand Canyons, cruises to Cabo San Lucas and droning and scuba diving in in warmer waters off the coast of Mexico as well as future vacations to Portugal and beyond.
Matt and David the dynamic duo pulled double duty and helped My Sweet BBQ staff pass out our lunches. We were delighted with delicious Tri-tip and Chicken BBQ plates, as Gary said you could cut the meat with a spoon. The BBQ was served with ample sides of potato salad, macaroni salad, cole slaw, range beans & collard greens.
Fueled by happy stomachs full from a delicious lunch we headed off to have dessert at Mel’s Mocha & Ice Cream in Walnut Grove. Enjoying more spectacular scenery we feasted on delicious ice cream and shakes. Our dessert cravings satisfied we headed to our next destination in Clarksville, the Old Sugar Mill. We were treated to live music, and an array of shops full of olive oil & wine to purchase and enjoy at home. There was a couple of enticing food trucks, however we were so full from lunch and ice cream we just couldn’t.
We decided to save the Grand Island Mansion and the Western Railroad Museum for another drive and all headed to our homes happy from a wonderful day of driving top down and enjoying the fabulous weather and food that California has to offer.
Many thanks to Matt & David for putting together a fun and adventurous drive through the Delta region of California. We sincerely hope this is the first of many adventures from this dynamic duo.