California Dreamin’

The Gnome and I recently returned from our very first trip to California, where we were guests of dear, decades-old friends. It was phenomenal, and the best part is that even after being in each other’s pockets for nearly every waking hour of our two-week visit, we’re still tight (I hope!).

We visited the south, the north, and in between; we saw the coast and the desert; we went to Indio, Oceanside, San Diego’s Balboa Park, San Simeon, Chico, San Francisco, and Berkeley. We saw three amazing plays, toured museums, rode the cable cars, and spent a few hours at Fisherman’s Wharf. We explored a national park, a national seashore, a national maritime historic park, and a national monument. We marveled at the cacti, animals, palm trees—lots and lots of palm trees, snow-capped mountains, and wildflowers.

We listened to the the sea lions and roamed around Hearst Castle. We drove past hundreds of wind turbines and miles and miles of almond trees; we hiked into a canyon and up a mountain, around a lake, and through the woods; we played Phase 10 and Pandemic (now, that’s a brain strainer). We traveled to Point Reyes (the only foggy day of our journey, so we could barely see its lighthouse), and we stood in hushed awe among the mighty redwoods in Muir Woods.

We had good times with our friends’ very grown up children and their fine partners. We bought groceries together, we cooked together, we ate great food and drank fine wine together, and we shared hours of light banter and deep conversation.

It was a busy couple of weeks. Words can’t do it justice. Neither can photos, but I can’t resist the urge to share. There are far too many to put up on one post, so I’m planning a follow-up in a week or two. (Except for sunsets, photos courtesy of the Gnome)


Looking up down in Palm Canyon

Joshua trees in Joshua Tree National Park

Joshua tree in bloom

I’ve seen sunrises over the Atlantic, but this was my first Pacific sunset. It did not disappoint!

Another Pacific sunset

Around San Simeon

Pt. Reyes National Seashore on a foggy day

Redwoods at Muir Woods National Monument

Redwoods at Muir Woods National Monument

Golden Gate Bridge

San Francisco from across the bay

Grabbing some rays

Moon jellies, Aquarium by the Bay

California poppies were popping up everywhere.

It was a kick watching the cable car turntables and the grip operator at work. We were lucky to snag outside seats. We held on tight!



9 thoughts on “California Dreamin’

  1. Pingback: The Grand Road Trip, Part I: Kentucky to South Dakota – Living on the Diagonal

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