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don has relatives!

Don’s cousin Lynn was in town for the day on Saturday. She’s working on assignment in Sacramento for a while, and stopped by so her cousin could show her the sights of Bay area. She’d already seen the City, and taken the tour of Alcatraz, so Don and I decided to take her on a tour of the south Bay. First stop: Big Basin Redwoods State Park.

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We walked around the short loop trail near the Ranger Station, in the grove where the Mother and Father of The Forest grow.

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The Coast Redwoods can grow up to 350 feet high! (Look for Don in the picture below :-)

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We headed back over the hills to visit the Hakone Japanese Gardens. There’s not much to say; it’s a beautiful place! This was my first visit, but it won’t be my last.

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Later in the afternoon, we headed north to Palo Alto, to the outdoor Stanford Shopping Center. After an hour of strenous window shopping, we sat down outside Madame Paulette’s (a bakery / coffeeshop / sidewalk cafe) and rested for a while, sipping ice tea.

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This part of the shopping center has the decor of a small Parisian alley. The wall opposite Madame Paulette’s is the back of another store, but it has a large mural painted on it to look like small French shops or apartments. It’s a very realistic painting, with some real hardware like doorknobs, lamps, and hanging plants. Children walking by often try to open the doors!

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The street sign reads “Rue du Chat Qui Peche”, which I’m guessing means “Street of the Cat with a Fish”, since around the painted corner is a painted cat guarding his painted fish. :-)

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