The scenery here partakes of a bolder and more varied character.At sunset we called a halt and leaving our wagons in close proximity, untackled the weary cattle to graze at freedom on the surrounding herbage, carefully staking our horses for a similar purpose for the night.
We saw these rockers of different sizes, some quite small and tended only by one man, who first digging and carrying the earth to the rocker alternately supplied it, and then with one hand kept it in motion, while with a tin pan he poured the water in from the stream.Their hospitality and kind attentions will ever be cherished by us with the liveliest satisfaction.Vast quantities of merchandise, unsuitable, useless, and worse than valueless, had been landed on these shores from all the ports of the Pacific, from the Sandwich Islands, and the East Indies.Seeing a ladder at one end, we ascended to the roof, which is flat solid masonry, of astonishing strength and durability.The buildings are said to be much dilapidated, and the good padres.Near the west end hangs three antique looking old bells on rude cross timbers.
The level basin of the valley is of common yellow sand and pebble, entirely different from the composition of the mountains, and is covered only with a sprinkling of poverty grass.Should this be accomplished, time only can determine whether or not a railroad from San Francisco to New York will be able to compete, either in celerity or economy.The convent, on the mountain, on one of these occasions, was turned into a fortress by the 277.Many of these we visited, and found them well stocked with merchandise from America, Europe and China.
They were much dissatisfied with the climate and country of California, and avowed their determination not to settle here, but to return to their beloved Oregon, of which they gave most glowing accounts.After fairly entering the mountains, much of the road is a deep ravine, often thirty feet high on each side, cut or worn through soft volcanic rocks or black sand clay, just wide enough for the passage of a single mule, or sometimes two abreast.Completing these arrangements, it came our turn after supper to wash the dishes.
He gave us much interesting information about the Indians in the valleys of the Sacramento and San Joaquin.Sailing almost continually in sight of the shores of this peninsula, we had an excellent opportunity to observe their formation.On our way through the village to this scene, we came upon a smaller affair of the same description of amusement, which was going on in front of one of the liquor shops, and with proportionate noise and confusion.Gambling prevailed to an extent heretofore unheard of and unknown.On some of these, boats or scows are used, to float the sugar, rum and coffee of the more distant plantations to market.At the junction of the rivers, however, are built the most of the houses and shops, at the time of our visit, some fifty in all.Strolling through the town as evening approached, we saw two Mexican gallants busily employed in preparing their guitars for a serenade.
The largest of these on the northern side is called the Creston, and is a conspicuous landmark to vessels, in making the port.A small stream of pure water trickles by the door down into the adjoining meadow.One little isle nearer the main, looked like a pyramid of flaming fire, while over all floated the purple clouds crowning with beauty the scene.Vincent--Midnight View of Monterey--Arrival at San Francisco.