Change of Scene

I joined my friend Anne in Davis, California. It’s a spur-of-the-moment trip.

Flying south usually brings one to a warmer place. People are more open, wear less clothes and have fixed grins  from squinting at the glaring sun.

On my flight from Seattle to San Francisco, I sat next to a couple of newly-weds on their way to Mexico for their honeymoon. They are in the sixties, a pair of love birds starting life together.

At BART Civic Centre, a crowd of Bay to Breakers runners in coloured wigs and odd costumes filled the car. A threesome of fairies took the seats around me and started talking about running brides, a team of wrestlers within a 4-man ring, people in salmon suits running the opposite direction and those running in the buff.

Moving eastward towards Sacramento at the Amtrak station, a die-hard 70s rocker plugged to her music was wailing out Hotel California to her own delight.

An endless freight train passed. The elderly man sitting on a bench nearby told me there were at least 200 container cars, 50 from or to China, rest to Chicago. How does he know? He comes to the train station every day and can tell when the economy is picking up by the length of the freight train and the frequency of the trips.

He is a retired fisherman from Alaska. Told me they don’t like to eat cod and use the fish as bait for crabs. Ugh! In Singapore we pay premium for cods.

It was noon when I arrived in Davis to an overhead canvas of clear blue sky and a backdrop of tree-lined cyclist haven. It is picture perfect.

Checking in the hotel can wait. I roamed the pretty university town and explored the streets filled with eclectic shops and restaurants.

The next day I walked with Anne to the university, cycled along the Arboretum, browsed the book stores, binged on cookies, cakes and ice-cream and had a nice siesta.

Anne is right about Davis. Glad she convinced me to be here.


UC Davis Arboretum trail

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