Friday, April 23, 2010

Day 4: Kelley Park VW Show

Kelley Park is a really cool venue for a VW show. I don’t know much about its history but here’s what has to say about it. “With 27 original and reproduction homes, businesses and landmarks History Park [in Kelley Park] highlights Santa Clara Valley's past. Complete with paved streets, running trolleys and a cafe, this 14-acre site has the charm and ambiance of times gone by.” I would add—is especially spectacular when lined with beautifully restored Volkswagens. For me, it just doesn’t get better than history, Volkswagens, and sunshine (well, my husband too, but I don’t want to get all sappy on ya) all together.

I think this is going to be best described in pictures. Here it is: Kelley Park 2010. (oh, and thanks to my friends for letting me steal about half of these pictures…I don’t usually worry about photo disclaimers on this site but if you are going to use any of these pictures for monetary gain or something like that, then um…ask me first or something like that. Whatever you’re supposed to say.)

After the show ended, we headed home. Again, it was a long drive, but so much fun.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Red Barn: Days 2 and 3

Friday night, we headed to the Red Barn campout and swap meet. On the way there, we (sadly) spotted our club President’s 21 window bus pulled over on the shoulder of the freeway. This is the 2nd time our President has attempted to take this bus to an out of state show and the 2nd time the bus has broken down before arriving…actually barely after embarking. Sad, yes.

The property where Red Barn takes place is a flea market parking lot which annually fills up with VWs, their owners, their dogs, and swap stuff. This was a seriously old school group. The 1970 bay window that was with us was probably the newest ACVW at the campout. The swap meet was fun and of a pretty decent size. We picked up two hubcaps at $5 each as we had lost two.

Upon leaving Red Barn, our group headed over to Santa Cruz where we walked around for what seemed like hours trying to agree on a satisfactory restaurant for lunch. Eventually the 14 of us got hungry and cranky and ended up at three separate restaurants. (Everyone made up after eating.)

California is beautiful this time of year.

Up next: Kelley Park

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Kelley Park trip: days 1 and 2

We started out bright and early last Thursday morning for our trip to Kelley Park. We were three ACVWs and some other car (I believe it was a Mitsubishi Montero).

Our destination for Thursday night was Sacramento. I’ve made this drive several times in my life but I have to tell you, it is a LONG drive from here in a VW bus. Having said that, it was, of course, a relaxing and wonderfully fun drive.

Friday, morning we spent some time in “Old Sac”. I wish I would have known a little more about its history before visiting, but it was excellent nonetheless. Old Sac is pretty much what you’d guess it is—the buildings and area of town where the modern city of Sacramento began. The buildings date to the mid 1800s and now contain entertaining little candy shops, gift shops, hat shops, and the like. Our favorite was Evangeline’s—an awesome novelty gift shop where we all spent a little cash and time.

Once the money in our parking meters had run out, we headed down to Mark Merrill’s shop party. On the way, a couple of things happened. First, I was navigating in my atlas as I regularly do and could see the shadow of our antenna which I could tell had something on the top of it—unusual. I finally looked out the window…you can see the reflection on this photo.

I’m not going to tell you what it is--or what I yelled into my radio at my friends in the other cars. If you were at Kelley Park, you may have noticed this object on all of the Idaho VWs. So classy.

The second memorable event on the way to Mark Merrill's was as follows. A semi passed our caravan (which happened a lot) and as it did so, it ripped a cooler and small grill off of the top of the luggage rack of the white Westy that was with us and came bouncing down the freeway at our bus. Fortunately, the cooler made its way off of the road just in time and the grill causes minimal damage to our bus' nose. Whew. It was scary. Note to self. Keep only low profile objects in the luggage rack of our Westy.

Back to the shop party. Astonishing. Breathtaking. Indescribable. Sacred. Mark has an amazingly incredible shop/museum where he houses some rare and perfectly restored VWs. I'll let the pictures talk.

Also in attendance was a double cab that was once owned and operated by the California Highway Patrol. Suposedly black is its original color. Sweet, eh?

…and here’s my first look at a Hebmuller. Ooooooo, it was so fantastically beautiful.
Mark also had a room filled to the brim with VW toys, a library full of more VW literature than I’ve ever seen, and a hallway lined with VW ads. Words can’t do this place justice. Seriously, it was astonishing and completely worth the 15 hours of driving it took us to get there.

Up tomorrow: Red Barn.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

New Curtains--office geek style

A while back, I read this post about hanging curtains in your bus "ghetto style" using springs which I thought was a sweet idea and I said to myself--nice. I'm all about rocking ghetto style curtains.

When we were camping at Miracle Hot Springs last month, we needed curtains so we took a bunch of towels (ahem, speaking of ghetto) and hung them up with binder clips which worked fantastically and I've now dubbed this--hanging bus curtains office geek style.

Our bus does not have a headliner which leaves available for our use a couple of really nice ridges all the way around (except on the rear hatch where we've got to use the hatch hinges).

I believe in our mess of a garage we do have the necessary rods for hanging the curtains correctly, but I'm really digging this new method for a few reasons. 1) In theory, the curtains will take longer to get dirty. 2) The curtains won't ever get in the way of the windows while driving (not that this is a huge issue, but it did happen on occassion in our Vanagon). 3) The curtains were beyond easy to make as I didn't have to sew cuffs for the rods to go through or hem them at the bottom. For that matter, I didn't have to be very careful about the size as they won't be hanging all of the time. It was a sweet deal--just surged the edges, made a bag for storage and we were good to go.

The major disadvantage is that fewer people will see these curtains. Okay, come on, they're cute, right? I'm crazy about that fabric.

TOMORROW WE'RE HEADED TO CALIFORNIA!! We're caravaning with some of our ACVW pals and our final destination (please cross your fingers for us) is the Kelley Park show in San Jose on Sunday!! Also, deserving of multiple exclamation points is our plan to visit Mark Merrill's garage on Friday night!!! I've been dreaming about his library for several weeks now.

Adios for now and I'm sure (assuming all goes well) I'll have more VW pictures to share on Tuesday than you'll ever want to see in your life.