DAY 108 (9/26/05): Rest Day, Palo Alto, CA.  This
morning we dropped our bikes off at a bike shop for a
few minor repairs and new chains.  This should be the
very last new chain of the trip for me.  As an
interesting side note, usually cyclists save their old
toothbrushes for cleaning their chains.  However, on
this trip I have gone through way more chains than
toothbrushes.  In any case, after the bike shop we
rode Caltrain into San Francisco and took Muni (SF's
version of the T) to Golden Gate park.  We walked
around there, looking at the Botanical Garden and the
Rose Garden.  My favorite rose was named after Julia
Child, and had lots of yellow-orange flowers.  We had
borrowed a San Francisco guide book from Jason (who,
like Angus, has to work for a living and so couldn't
join us today), so we did a self-guided walking tour
of the Haight-Ashbury neighborhood.  This neighborhood
was an epicenter of the hippie movement and most of
the landmarks on the tour reflected that.  We saw
houses whose former occupants included Jefferson
Airplane (although I think they were Jefferson
Starship at that point), the Grateful Dead, and Janis
Joplin.  Haight Street itself has lots of shops with
hippie attire and accessories, as well as some people
who are clearly living in their VW Microbuses 40 years
later.  The neighborhood also has lots of old
Victorian-style buildings in a variety of bright
colors.  After the walking tour, we walked across the
city and met up with Angus, and we all took the train
back to Palo Alto together.  Jason made an excellent
dinner, after which Tobias and I made some plans for
tomorrow and then we all watched a movie together.

DAY 109 (9/27/05): Rest Day, Palo Alto, CA.  This
morning, Tobias and I picked up a rental car (a
Pontiac Sunfire), and drove off towards Napa Valley. 
On the way, we stopped for a tour of the Jelly Belly
factory, where the famous jelly beans our made.  One
interesting historical note is that these jelly beans
were made famous by none other than Ronald Reagan, who
kept them on his desk while he was trying to quit
smoking.  Reporters found out what kind of beans they
were, and the business took off.  On the tour we
learned how the centers of the beans are formed: a
machine stamps thousands of bean-shaped depressions
into a huge tray full of corn starch.  Another machine
squirts a bean-sized drop of syrupy goop into the
depression, and then the syrup is cooled and dried
until it solidifies.  The trays are then inverted over
a sieve, so the bean centers are trapped and the
cornstarch falls into a collection bin below for
re-use.  The centers are then coated with more sugar
and shiny stuff.  Finally, another machine stamps each
bean with the Jelly-Belly logo.  The whole process
takes about 10 days with all the drying steps in
between.  We got some free samples and I bought a bag
of "belly flops" (beans that weren't quite perfect
enough for sale).  Jelly-Belly has also hopped on the
Harry Potter bandwagon, and offers a special flavor
assortment that includes dirt, bacon, spaghetti, and
garlic, among others.  After all this confectionary
excitement, we moved on to Napa Valley, where we
visited a half-dozen or so wineries.  The area itself
is very scenic, vineyards everywhere and the mountains
clearly visible on either side.  Unfortunately, we
didn't like the wineries nearly as much as those in
Oregon.  The wines were all quite expensive, and the
quality was good but not exceptional.  The atmosphere
of the tasting rooms was definitely snobbier than the
wineries in OR as well.  At one place, we walked in
and stood at the counter for 4 or 5 minutes while the
guy behind the counter totally ignored us and
continued his conversation with some much more well
dressed customers.  So, we left.  Most of the places
also charged fairly high tasting fees as well, so
Tobias and I shared a glass everywhere that we went. 
We only made one purchase the entire day: I bought two
bottles of a really excellent Cabernet Franc vinegar
from the Dutch Henry winery.  We drove back to Palo
Alto, where I cooked dinner for the guys.  In doing
so, I introduced Jason and Angus to the joys of
artichokes with garlic butter.  So, although our stay
with them has been brief, I may have left a lasting impression.