Ugh – feeling like I’m going to fall asleep any minute, and it’s only 18:20 here (but that’s 2:20am at home, so I suppose that’s why)

I spent a nice Sunday here in the Bay Area – like Jim, I too was up really early (damn jet lag) – so I took the opportunity to get myself lost in the Bay Area. One of the things I love about travelling are the joys of exploring a new area : heading into the big wide open, armed with a (in my case, pretty crappy car-rental) map and a vague sense of direction, then getting yourself completely and utterly lost, finding your bearings and finally getting home again. Great fun, provided you’ve got the time to get lost and aren’t under pressure of course…

This morning, I drove out towards Fremont, looking to find a road through Niles Canyon that I’d head about. Found that okay, but then managed to take a wrong turn somewhere, which led me through Sunol, and along an amazingly twisty road which ran around and over some hills with spectacular scenery along the way (I think the road was called Sierra Road). I’d love to have been able to stop to take photos there, but the road was pretty narrow – thankfully, I only had to share it with cyclists and bikers, all of whom seemed to be shocked to see me “What, a car, on this road !?” : I pulled in as much as I could to let them pass – with 5mph corners, I was taking things a lot more slowly than those guys. Encountering anything larger than a bike might have been scary.

After that, having had a go at little roads, I thought I’d try my hand at some much larger ones. I headed back out of Milpitas up to Berkeley, and Oakland (which took me a while to find my way out of) and then over a toll bridge towards San Francisco, and back along the 101 to my hotel here in Newark. My plan this afternoon was to head out again and explore Muir Woods, but on finding that sleep was catching up with me, I figured getting behind the wheel again would be a bad move – jet lag and driving (in the Bay Area, or anywhere else for that matter) don’t mix kids.

Instead my afternoon was blue tortilla chips (why can’t we get these in Ireland!?), Discovery Channel, and my feet up on the sofa)

Freeways are nice, but I much prefer twisty roads (which would have been infinitely more fun with a manual gearbox!) It’s into the office tomorrow with a full schedule – hopefully I’ll not look too undead, but if my eyes glaze over at any stage, I apologise in advance, just point me at the nearest coffee machine and I’ll be fine.