Monday, July 28, 2008

Tour Diary Part 3!

Can you believe I have more to tell you about this trip? I do! I only covered one city so far, it just took two blog entries to do it! Next up was Monterey. We took the scenic route up there along the Pacific Coast Highway. I recommend that everyone take PCH at least once in their life (well, if you can handle driving twisty, turny roads or have a significant other or friend who will do it...) and in fact I would have liked to take it farther, all the way up to Washington if I could, but they would have charged me an arm and a leg for the rental car. Anyway, it's gorgeous, it's scary, but in that fun I'm-living-dangerously way, and it was just a nice experience to share with the boy who likes driving. You go along coastline, up big hills, and through Big Sur. There are about 100 pictures of the road on photobucket here if you want to skim through them. But here is mainly what it looked like:

Scott experienced the In-N-Out Burger for the first time and even though I don't really condone meat, I had to document his experience because he was excited. At least my friend Tai said they received the best rating in Fast Food Nation:

The best part of the drive was when we stopped at an "Elephant Seal Viewing Point." At first we didn't see the seals, we saw some adorable little chipmunks who I noticed weren't running away in fear when we approached. Then I noticed there was one sitting on a lady's shoulder? I wanted to play! And there was trail mix in the car so:

And this was the perfect shot:

But oops:

Umm onward to the seals, mostly they were lazy:

But these two were frolicking in the water:

And I thought this one was gonna pick a fight but maybe he was just yawning:

I wasn't sure why he was all peely and some of them looked scarred up. Scott's theory was from boats which made me a little sad. But mostly these seal and chipmunk (they are chipmunks, right? Or are they squirrels?) pictures make me really happy. I had kinda a sad day today, but laughed hysterically at the chipmunk pictures.

Anyway there was a purpose to our journey to Monterey. I wish we'd had time for Cannery Row and the Steinbeck Museum, but we didn't because the reason for the trip was SIGNING WITH KELLY PARRA!!!!

We signed at a Borders Express so no time for a reading/Q&A, but they had such a lovely table set up for us with flowers and everything. They even managed it in a rush because somehow things got confused and our promo stuff was sent to a Borders in Minnesota. Kelly was smart enough to put together a cool gift basket for one lucky winner (Nathalie!) who bought either of our books that day:

It was small, but spirited group of visitors we had, especially Randal who talked to us for quite a while. Kelly got some pictures of signing in action and wrote a great blog about the event too, so check that out here.

Meeting Kelly really was one of the highlights of my trip. When I first signed with MTV Books, I got her book Graffiti Girl and sent her a shy MySpace message, she wrote me back right away and has been answering my questions about learning the ropes of publishing ever since. She was just as sweet in person and hugged me right away. Her kids were totally adorable, too! Best of all, she gave me a signed ARC of her newest book Invisible Touch, which is a prize in my latest contest and believe me, you want to enter because I'm reading it right now and it is REALLY good. I'm digging it even more than GG and I loved that book!

Well, so that was basically Monterey plus PCH, tomorrow onward to San Francisco!


Kelly (Lynn) Parra said...

Yay, Steph!! We had such a fun time even though it was a slow night. haha! I'm glad you're enjoying Touch!! I'm off to SF tomorrow!

Stephanie Kuehnert said...

It was such a blast and IT is sooooooooo good! Enjoy SF!