Saturday, July 19, 2014

The days are drifting away....

Summer break has been extra long this year thanks to furlough days.  I traveled to California's Central Coast in early June. We saw the elephant seals at Piedras Blancas (and I either made a life long friend or was being yelled at---I am not good at deciphering the body language of the elephant seal.)

We made it to Cannery Row in Monterey.  It was a beautiful day--gorgeous sky, delicious lunch, and not overly crowded.  It seems that the older I get, the less I enjoy being jostled into strangers.  ANyone else feel that way?  We didn't have time to visit the aquarium, so I had to be content with looking out at the bay itself.  While I didn't manage to spot any sea otters in the water as I had hoped, my husband pointed out the wildlife on the rock.  At first I thought he was just showing me the birds, but then I noticed the seals.  Can you see them?  They blend in well.

We made our way back down toward Cambria via the 101.  Somehow I managed to convince him to let me take a quick detour to one of the few California Missions I had never seen--Mission Soledad.  Back when I taught 4th grade, in my much younger single days, I took an extended trip and visited all of the California Missions.  However, Soledad was only open a few days during the week at that time, so I wasn't able to see it.  Driving by it is not the same as stepping back in time as wander the grounds.  

On Moonstone Beach in Cambria, we saw vultures. Unfortunately, I touched the wrong button on his camera (I am much better with just one button--like the one on my phone) and all of the pictures ended up being black and white.  I was truly surprised by how red their heads are--not that you can tell in the photo.  We never figured out why they were hanging around, although, in hindsight, it is probably better not to know.

Our final stop on the way back home was in Pismo Beach.  More wildlife at our hotel--pelicans!  It seemed like this vacation had turned into an animal expedition.  We had a great view of the pier from our room.  In the morning, I picked up some cinnamon rolls from a place in town a fellow teacher had told me about (it is called Old West Cinnamon Rolls.)  She told me to be prepared for a wait, but I must have arrived at just the right moment--got a parking spot and the line was super short.  Isn't it the best when that happens?!?!  And the cinnamon rolls--they were even delicious hours later when we finally reached home.

I had a giant list of things that I wanted to accomplish this summer, but I haven't been as productive as I would have liked.  However, the most important thing that I have ended up doing wasn't even on the list.  Usually I have a plan for our vacation:  where we will eat, what we will do each day, etc.  But this year, I went without a plan (except for the hotel reservations) because we left right after school got out, and I didn't have the time to do all the research.  And not only did we survive, but we had a great time.  It made me realize that I really need to spend more time relaxing and to enjoy the moments as I am in them.  So I have been reading more, experimenting in the kitchen, seeing old friends, exploring Southern California, etc. The list will always be there......the moments are fleeting, and if you miss them, you can't get them back.


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