By John C. Dyer, UK Correspondent
(This is the second of a two-part photo story by John C. Dyer. The first can be found here.)
The City of Davis is best known as the home of the University of California, Davis a world class institution. But it is also a marvelous place to visit in its own right, especially appealing to those who like a traditional city center and village atmosphere. (Photos left: "Village House" and "Detail Village Garden" by John C. Dyer, August 2011). (Photo right "City Street" by John C. Dyer, August 2011)
Davis is the home to a busy Farmer’s Market, one of the first in the modern Farmer’s Market movement, featuring entertainment as well as veggies for its many customers. But of course, the University is never far from sight. (Photos right: "Uni student" and "Farmers Market Scene by John C. Dyer, 2011).
You really could not make Davis up, but to the English eye it offers all that a town centre should, small local shops and restaurants, walking and biking the norm and the Unitrans double decker, vintage, iconic London Routemaster buses. The farmers’ market is very impressive after the cholesterol loaded offerings of a much smaller market in St Annes.
University of California, Davis
The campus of the University of California is a delight to visit. Cork Oaks shade its central square . Multiple sculptures intrigue the walker (Photos left: UCD campus and photos right: Intrigue, Using Your Head and Shoe by John C. Dyer, August 2011). The campus consciously connects with England, using London buses for transport and decorating the station with an old Telephone Booth. Putah Creek winds through campus. (Photo left: "Phone Box," by John C. Dyer, August 2011.
UC Davis' Horticultural Heritage
(Photos above: "Beezy," "Purple Whisps," "Pink on Pond,"by John C. Dyer, August 2011)
Labour Day saw a handful of students and very little bike action. Two days later it was no longer safe to walk in a daydream for cyclists asserting their right to the cycle paths and young people swarming around the town and campus. We bid adieu as the students began to arrive for the Fall.
I lived in Woodland for many years. It has its share of memories, some happy, some not so much.
Woodland does have its busy bees (Photo left "Busy Bee" by John C. Dyer, August 2011). But the town seems to me to be in character with what one would expect from the unseen bedroom community to Disneyland’s Main Street. Dogone, it even has a Dead Cat and a Dogone Alley.
(Photos right "Gable Mansion," "Pendergast," "Third Street," "Victorian," "Lattis," and"Gingerbread," by John C. Dyer, August 2011.)
People from miles around come to tour Woodland’s historic buildings early character homes, and flowers. (Photo right "Opera House" by Victoria Buchan Dyer and photo right "Newport style home" by John C. Dyer, August 2011.)
Fantastic homes, which would sell for over £1 million in the UK can be picked up for moderate amounts ($259-600,000 range for the eight we priced) in a safe community with good schools. Walking Woodland’s central area was a great way to see the fabulous architectural details. The fact that we were walking there and not just on “Historic Stroll” day may have been remarked by locals for whom the car sometimes seems to be their legs. (Photos left: "Catching the Sun" and "The Stroll" by John C. Dyer, August 2011.)
Of course, we had to eat. We enjoyed the Rio City Cafe, the River City Brewing Company, Ludy’s BBQ (home of the calorie starved lover of all things BBQ), Steve’s Place Pizza, Applebees, and two of my long time favourite restaurants. These are found in Davis and Sacramento, respectively and are both Crepeville (Photo left: "Crepeville Davis" by John C. Dyer, August 2011) and L Street Crepeville.
Family owned and operated, the two Crapevilles offer fantastic value for money, especially the half salads. Our favourite half salads were the L Street half salad and the Garden Salad. (Photos left "L Street Salad" and Garden Salad" by John C. Dyer, August 2011)
But we shouldn’t neglect to mention the skinny double Cappuccinos , the Strawberry Crepe , or the delicious Black Bean Soup . Yum. (Photo left: "Black Bean Soup" and Photos right "Strawberry Crepe" and "Cappuccinos" by John C. Dyer, August 2011)
No need to worry about what to eat with Crepeville close by. Managing two weeks in the US with no car and not once resorting to junk food might have been a major challenge without this local knowledge. Between them Sacramento and Davis must offer every kind of cuisine imaginable and all looked and smelled delicious and tempting, but dietary requirements kept us on the straight and narrow.
But in the end, it was a time to forge new connections and renew old ones, create new memories for the future and recall old times with family and friends. Those photos we will keep to ourselves. We are sure you understand. Two weeks passed like a weekend. But the memories will remain with us forever.