Ocean and more Ocean (Day 6)

yep, I've got two rides these days
Things I've done today:
  • drank many many cups of coffee
  • had my first BLT in a week (I know this seems odd)
  • saw some killer views
  • taken two bubble baths
... and jumped up and down on the beach frequently.

As a testament to how great this bed was last night, I didn't wake up until the room service lady knocked on my door with breakfast. I'm pretty sure that I didn't have both eyes open as I reached for the breakfast basket. It was pretty great though to have breakfast already for consumption. How did I enjoy it you ask? Oh, I made myself a bubble bath and drank a hot cup of coffee.

After starting my day off right, I also finally booked my return flight to Boston. So this grand adventure has an end date unfortunately... but I did also book my first work trip to DC for two weeks from now. In the meantime... today I drove the coast and saw some killer views. It was great.

Since this was the first time I was going to stay two nights in one place it felt a little weird to leave for the day without my suitcase. I actually had to think about what I wanted to wear, layers, etc. Unfortunately, I polished off the cheez-its last night while I was waiting for my children's burger... so I didn't have to bring those with me. What did I bring? The Mentos obviously.

Stops on my list for the day:
(1) 17 Mile Drive
Honestly, I had never heard of this before. What I had heard of before? Pebble Beach and apparently they are the same? or something? Anyway. Entering this "gated" community costs $9.50 which is totally worth the views. It's like a recipe for your next family Christmas (or Kwanza) card. Although, I'd like to try and understand who gets the cash money from entrance fees because all of these homes are seriously gorgeous and I can't imagine the owners are needing a cut of my $9.50.
yep, those are seals!
Great points?
  • I saw some seriously big seals. Wait, let me clarify. I saw them from a great distance through the binoculars that I took from my hotel. But, from a great distance .... those seals are still super loud... and cute.
  • I can't wait to watch the next golf tournament at Pebble Beach. Its probably the only time that I'll be able to say "I was there!".
  • I really wish I had measured to see if this loop was actually 17 miles. It seems like such an arbitrary number.
(2) Route 1 / Big Sur
In doing some research for this leg of my adventure, I knew that there were benefits to going North to South or South to North. Some people complained about feeling too close to the edge going North to South. Honestly, I didn't get that at all. Maybe I'm just a daredevil, but it didn't even feel close.

However, as a driver.... you get a much better view going South to North. So interweb, keep that in mind when you are planning your next adventure. Confession? I originally planned on driving a whole lot more than I did. I did like 40 miles-ish of Route 1 from Monterey area to whatever state park was after Big Sur (see how important it was). I'm sure the views would have been super great if I kept going.... but I had seen a solid amount.
Great points?
  • I found my Mentos about 5 seconds into this drive.... and finished them within 15 seconds. It felt out of place and natural at the same time. I had spent so much of the week looking for the Mentos.
  • I kind of bailed on Big Sur. I got there, paid my entrance fee, but it was kind of empty. While it would have been great to check out the trails, and I'm sure it would have been safe.... I didn't feel great about it. (See Mom, I can make decisions about safety) Plus, the lighthouse wasn't open for tours... and I would have loved a lighthouse tour.
  • There were all of these people that were biking this insanely hilly road. Really guys? Nuts. Not only are you crazy for doing this, you are also taking up some of the road which makes it more dangerous for the drivers. These road are narrow yo.
(3) Carmel
On the way back from Route 1,  I was considerably hungry having finished the Mentos and the Cheez-Its. Carmel seemed like a great option... even though I kept wanting to pronounce it "CAR-a-MEL" like the ice cream syrup topping. 
  • I ended up grabbing lunch at this cute place called the Village Corner Bistro. I found it by searching for "lunch" on Foursquare and certainly wasn't disappointed. I got to sit on a covered outdoor patio... near.... a ..... fire pit! Perfect.
  • I spent like 13 minutes trying to find the store "Diggity Dog". It promised to be a "dog and cat boutique" and I really had to see what this meant. There was nothing for cats... so I highly recommend they change their subtitle. However, if you are a dog owner and in the area.... it's probably right up your alley. Doesn't everyone need a designer collar, raincoat, and "snack bar"? 
  • This place is filled with art galleries and real estate establishments. I'm not really an "art" person, but baby sister would have been in heaven.
Post driving activities I was pretty beat. It was pretty overcast but I was really hoping the skies would clear in time for sunset. I decided to head to the beach and work on my jumping in the air shots. I'm not joking. I saw this picture on Pinterest over the summer and always wanted to recreate it.... since I had a tripod it seemed possible.... plus this beach is gorgeous. Well, after 30 minutes of running and jumping in the air... I managed to get a few shots. But, I literally look constipated, well my face does.

So goal for tomorrow. Since I've "perfected" the self-timer / jumper shot, I'm going to work on that in the morning again... but with better face. I figure I'll have a leisurely morning at the beach and then head back to San Francisco. 

Next stop? Los Angeles! I'm super excited to see two of my great friends from grad school. I'm actually hoping its a friendship connection for both of them. No pressure though. These ladies have been pretty patient with me this week as I have failed to figure out my plans :).

Bonus Pictures:
breakfast in a basket. loves it. there is coffee hidden under that USA Today
it looks like I'm falling over... but this is really my attempt to jump in the air and take a picture.
 this seaweed is terrifying. seriously. I may never swim in the Pacific Ocean as a result.
My 2nd of two baths that I took today


Update:
Oh, and they've closed two of the roads I was on in Yosemite Park due to impending snow. Another point for my stellar (and just lucky) timing:
Although, I'm pretty sure nobody will miss out on the Mariposa Grove and their terrible maps. Glacier Point is a bummer for sure. At least my friend the bear will be able to play in the snow in peace :)

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