Monday, March 9, 2009

Greetings from the California coast!  I am taking a road trip with my 2 best friends from KS, Billie and Karen.  Karen and I took this trip together back in 1987, and I've been lobbying for a "repeat" since 2007.  We needed Billie along for this one.  We decided to do the trip in reverse so we could end up in Los Angeles to celebrate Karen's daughter's 31st birthday next weekend.  We arrived on 3/8 into San Jose, where we picked up our car and headed toward Pacific Grove and our first hotel.  We decided to stay in the area of Pacific Grove and do some day trips from here.  
Yesterday we drove to Point Lobos, where we hiked out to the rocky shoreline and gazed out at the sea lions.  The wind was fierce, and it was quite chilly.  I was fascinated with the way the wind carved and packed solid the sand and rock along the shore.  I could have stayed there for many hours looking at all the patterns carved into the landscape.  What a breath-takingly beautiful place.  
We drove on to Big Sur, stopping frequently along the roadside to stare out at the vistas.  We drove as far south as Nepentha, a favorite spot for Billie.  We arrived just in time to find a place outside and watch the sunset.  Although it was chilly we were warmed by the propane heaters placed near our table.  A bowl of soup shared with friends while watching the sunset (and I even saw a whale spouting!):  it was the end of a joyful day.  
For us, this time is precious.  Since I moved to Texas, our time together is infrequent.  As we move through life, we are trying to prioritize our special times together.  For Karen and I, the 1987 California trip cemented our friendship, occurred before big changes in both of our lives, and has represented a little "freeze-frame" magical spot of time that we both refer back to when we need a little place to escape in our heads.  So, for us, this trip represents a celebration of the depth of our friendship.  We are enjoying the luxury of having time together to reconnect, as well as making new memories.  I am a very fortunate woman to have this gift.

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