Cruisin’ California and more (cont.)

         Incroyable! Our Southern California summer has turned out to be a strange one. Only yesterday did I sample the first vine-ripened heirloom tomatoes my friend Andrea grows on her organic farm/B and B (www.BlueHeronfarmBandB.com.) There was never quite enough sun for them to ripen earlier.

         But I digress.

         My last post told about a wonderful road trip to Ashland OR. A word of caution to anyone in CA: We initially decided to rent a car, and did so through Enterprise Rent-a-Car. I made the reservation over the phone, and everything went well until we presented ourselves at the company’s front desk to pick up our vehicle.

         We were bantering back and forth with the agent, when he asked:

         “What’s your destination?”

         We answered innocently that we were heading to Ashland for 2 days, and would make our way down the California coast soon after.

         “Then I need to add a fee of $10 a day if you cross the state line into Oregon,” was his reply.

         My husband and I were shocked since I had read nothing of this on their website, nor had I heard anything to that effect from the agent who confirmed my reservation over the phone. Renting the car would have added about $100 to the price of the rental, something we were NOT prepared to do, feeling like victims of a bait and switch. Off we went to Oregon in our own car. Later, a call to Enterprise headquarters confirmed this was company policy (though you can take a rental from California into Arizona and Nevada). Go figure.

         One of the purposes of our trip was to drop off copies of A Biblical Feast in independent bookstores along the way. Though this was certainly labor intensive, it was wonderful to meet store owners and managers acting as determined Davids against the Goliaths of the publishing world–from Chaucer’s Books in Santa Barbara .

 

To Avid Reader (www. avidreaderbooks.com) in Sacramento, to Lyons Books (www.lyonsbooks.com) in Chico, Book inc. (www.booksinc.net) in and around San Francisco, Terra Firma (www.terrafirmahome.com) in Jacksonville (OR), Book Passage (www.bookpassage.com) in Corte Madera, and Not of This World (www.notofthisworldbookstore.com) in Santa Rosa. You can peruse the complete list of stores and California Missions like Santa Ines, on my Biblical Feast page. 

Thank you one and all for taking me in and placing my “independent” book on your shelves.

         Foodgal.com’s Carolyn Jung (whose address is on my blogroll) has just been profiled in a book titled Cooking for Geeks. She included my recipe for preserved lemons, and wrote about it on her blog. Her article on attending one of my classes and learning how to make preserved lemons is on my preserved lemon page. You’ll love her sense of humor!

         Linked In introduced me to Deena Montillo, of Montillo Italian Foods (www.vinocotto.us). I was particularly interested in her product, Vino Cotto (“cooked wine”), which is similar to the biblical ingredient I call “grape syrup” in A Biblical Feast (I also give the recipe.) The Montillos make theirs following a family recipe from Calabria, Italy. My husband loved vino cotto mixed in with his oatmeal!

         Another chocoholic friend maintains the blog: http://DivineFudge.blogspot.comhttp://divinefudge.blogspot.com/

 Look at what I found at the Vista Farmer’s Market! Can you guess what they are?

          Have a flavorful end of summer! Keep in touch!

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