Wednesday, February 12, 2014

We'd planned to travel on up to Oregon...

but my heart was hurting, still, 
and I feel God's peace at the sea - so my sweetie and I changed plans
 and we headed back to the coast... 
But first we took a little walk 
by the edge of a creek near our hotel and found these - 
wild raspberries!
Then we were on the road again ---
Love how the mountains just OPEN UP to the sea --
amazing views!
Wonderful rocky cliffs and a road that takes you right along the winding coast...
 I can't really put into words the peace I feel when I'm near the sea -
The constancy of God's love and goodness is just SO APPARENT to me when I'm there...
 We saw this gorgeous camp ground - right on the cliffs - no electricity or facilities...
[they had solar panels to run their rigs - lol]
And then, this beautiful lighthouse that we saw for miles - just such a  beacon of hope to me. So fun to see it since the Port Reyes Light House was closed earlier in the week due to the Government shut-down. 
And we stopped, walked along cliffs to enjoy it and 
then down to the beach a bit -- so full of pebbles - everywhere!
... and misty fog with the sun shining through.
Again, just wonderful.
Good for my soul.
Then we headed through some little towns -- had lunch at a local - delicious - Mexican place in Fort Bragg - recommended by a shopper we met in a thrift store - lol.
We'd planned to head back across the mountains to The 101, but realized we'd be driving those crazy curvy roads with free-range cows [literally] in the dark,  so we opted to stay on the coast a bit longer and found a local lodge [reminded me of a Gatlinburg cabin] to enjoy -
 It was set right on the cliffs and you could hear the surf from our room - pretty neat.
The problem with Highway 1 up that way is that the little towns are few and far between... and there are few places to eat along the way - so we were VERY happy that we still had some of our groceries and could enjoy a tasty meal of apples, turkey, etc.
 The view from our room was wonderful -- 
breath-taking -
 It would be nice little place to stay if you were hiking / biking in the area
[there were some SERIOUS bikers on the roads, y'all...]
Next we decided to head down to Carmel.
But first on the agenda was finding breakfast - not an easy task in this sparsely populated area... We finally drove through a tiny town that had one place that served food of any kind - 
And had one of the best meals of the trip -  
Poached eggs on toasted basil focaccia with crab meat and avocado - 
Enough to share...
And right on a little inlet.
A very nice way to [officially] start the day - 
we'd been on the road an hour or so when we found it - ha.
We realize it was all 'out-of-order' to go to Carmel - but we had the time and wanted to see the coast down there too - Our navigator took us AROUND The City and Oakland, down through San Jose, etc.. We stopped and shopped thrift stores, and markets, 
and fruit stands along the way...
We got to Carmel mid-afternoon and stayed in what may be one of 
my favorite hotels of the trip - 
Yes, it's a Choice - with less than 70 rooms, just blocks from the beach [with the hills, you could see the waves from our window!] And I LOVED the dutch doors you could open for the breeze! [No air conditioning - not that we needed it...]
And, yes, I look weary - but I was having a wonderful time!
We walked down to the beach [no pebbles!] 
And what did we see?
Bucket List:
Yes, they look tiny from our vantage point - but still...
wild whales, y'all!
[My little nikon has a super zoom lens... ]
The sunset was spectacular!
And just what was needed to soothe our souls...
Love the banyon tree that was growing right on the beach 
[up the hill a bit.]
 I just enjoyed being with my sweetheart 
doing nothing but being together --
I am so glad we took the time to travel south a bit. 
Carmel is beautiful - we enjoyed shopping and had a lovely dinner.
A nice little respite before heading into the hustle and bustle of The City...

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