Back from Sunny, California (Part 1)

The end of the trip was just as wild and hectic as the entire weekend since our plane actually landed this morning at 6:00am (over 3 hours late!), but our “spontaneous” trip to California was more than worth it, especially for a girl who grew up inland in the ‘burbs of of Columbus, Ohio. Until I saw the coast for the first time when I was a young girl, my idea of the ocean was hanging out int the neighborhood swimming pool with Malibu Barbie.

I’m still in awe of the nartural and stunning beauty of the Pacific Coastline. I remember in elementary school when teachers would say, “California is so big that you can ski in the morning and then drive in your convertible in another city by the afternoon.” My little pea brain couldn’t comprehend that one state could have four seasons in one day!

We flew into Orange County on Saturday at 11am and spent most of the afternoon doing the cheesy touristy Hollywood, Beverly Hills, Malibu thing…a stroll down Rodeo drive, lunch in Beverly Hills, a closeup view of the “Hollywood” sign, the Hollywood Walk of fame, a self-guided tour of stars homes and then the infamous “death” tour–Chateau Marmot (where John Belushi died), the Viper Room (where River Phoenix died), Rockingham and Bundy (streets of the infamous OJ/Nicole Brown Simpson debaucle). We really didn’t actively seek those out…They were just there as we drove through Brentwood on our way to Malibu. Damn, I sound so freaking L.A.

After a couple of hours in L.A., we began our drive up the Pacific Coast Highway through Malibu and beyond. We stopped for the night in a little town called Oxnard..yikes! There’s a reson this city isn’t in the Fodor’s Guide.
We woke up Sunday and went for a quick run in Oxnard and then began our journey to some of the most beautiful sites. We ran outside for about 30 minutes and then I hopped on the treadmill and did about 20 more minutes. We made it to Santa Barbara in time to hit 9:00am Mass at the Mission Santa Barbara. Absolutely stunning. You could see the mountains in the distance and everything was so lush and alive. We stolled the streets, grabbed our Starbucks and then headed to a harborfront restaurant for lunch overlooking the Pacific. I wish we could’ve extended our stay, but we had other sites to absorb…the Hearst Castle, Monterrey and finally Carmel. We got to Carmel in just enough time to put on jeans (it got cold!!!) and walk down to the beach to see the sun set over Pebble Beach. Dinner in Carmel was followed by a night of rest as the whirlwind tour of California was to continue of Monday.

More to come…

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3 thoughts on “Back from Sunny, California (Part 1)

  1. Glad to hear you had a nice time! I’m headed to LA tomorrow morning, I hope you left some good weather for us there!Speaking of weather, it has been very moist and hot here over the past week, you havne’t missed much.

  2. Aha! If you go back to Santa Barbra, there’s a really nice Italian place (I forget the name) on the main street leading away from the water – er, its on the right if you’re heading inland, near the beginning of the “strip,” so to speak.And they’ve got some great bed-n-breakfasts, too.But it sounds like you had a great time! Now… how ’bout those tacos?

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