Thursday Doors: El Camino Real, Mountain View

El Camino Real is 600 miles long, linking cities up and down California. Sometimes known as the “Royal Road” or the “King’s Highway,” it has a storied history: between 1683 and 1834, Jesuit and Franciscan missionaries established a series of missions from today’s Baja California and Baja California Sur into what is now the state of California. Today’s El Camino links those 21 missions.


In present-day Mountain View, however, El Camino a busy road with a lot of cars. I’ve done some Thursday doors posts about Mountain View before, highlighting it’s history as the geeky ground zero of Silicon Valley: Self-driving car, NASA Ames, HP Garage, Steve Jobs’ house, Stanford Medical Center. This post shows another side of the city.

Last weekend when I was at a friend’s house to play some string quartets, I drove my car into a curb. The tire didn’t go flat, but the rubber was damaged and it looked like there was a bite taken out of it. I could see some nylon. Another friend recommended a tire place on El Camino, and I took my car there this morning to find out that yes, the tire needed to be replaced. It would take about an hour and a half, during which I wanted to meet a group of geocachers for lunch at Panera Bread, a little over a mile away. I left my car there and walked.

“Caminar” is the Spanish verb for “to walk,” and as I walked down this camino I had a very different view of what I passed than I did when I drive every day.

First I passed this motel. Not sure I would want to stay there, but I probably would if the price was right.

Budget Motel

This looked like someone’s house. The door was set back from the street and protected by bars and a gate.

Private Home

One of several medical offices and dialysis centers.

Medical Office

An old-fashioned hardware store where you can find a lot of good stuff.

True Value Hardware

Supposedly a personal trainer works here, but the building and parking lot are empty.

Abandoned Personal Trainer office

Never been in here, or seen this before:

More Vaping

A restaurant that delivers


Buy a new vacuum cleaner or get your old one fixed!

Vacuum cleaner purchase and repair

Sit on that weird bench while waiting for your car to be done?

Foreign Car Service

Upscale apartment complex

Guest Parking Only

Even more upscale. We lived in a place similar to this one the first month we were in CA while we waited for our furniture. The balconies are either mind-numbingly or comfortingly similar.

Balcony Doors

The pool is visible from the street but no one is swimming today. Probably it’s too cold.

Pool: Keep Closed

Painting a teddy bear blue makes me think of getting my hair cut, how about you?

Kids Hair Cuts!

Thursday Doors is a weekly feature allowing door lovers to come together to admire and share their favorite door photos from around the world. Feel free to join in on the fun by adding your post to the link over at Norm 2.0’s blog!

6 thoughts on “Thursday Doors: El Camino Real, Mountain View”

  1. It’s really amazing how much more you see and how much more intimate you become with a neighborhood – when you are on two legs and not in a car. Enjoyed my virtual walk with you through this area. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi Karen- fun to see as you walk … we’re taking the car in today – so will travelling some other route when we get down to Victoria … I’m not surprised your eyes skated over a few of these ‘doors’ … cheers Hilary

    Liked by 1 person

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