Thursday, May 6, 2010

Big Sur

About a week and a half ago I returned from another trip to California. I love it there for many reasons: the weather, the scenery, rolling hills, steep cliffs, beautiful beaches, the weather, the weather, the weather. Why the weather? The humidity is virtually non existent. For those of us plagued, I mean blessed, with arthritis (no, it isn't that bad!), humidity is like the devil. I do try to think that the devil is in the humidity when it causes me pain. Keeps me going...hallelujah!

A few friends from the running group went to Monterey for the Big Sur Marathon (and other races) weekend. I ran the 10.6 miler and it went great - thanks for asking :o) On Thursday, we drove down Highway 1 to Santa Cruz for lunch, then onto Monterey to check in the hotel. We stayed at the Hyatt in Monterey. Very nice!
I spent some time on the beach at Carmel by the Sea. Words cannot describe how powerful the waves seemed to be! No one was swimming...and I can only assume the undertow is horrific. It was beautiful, though.
Seal pupping season was going on while we were there. We saw several seal pups. This one is nursing. Isn't it adorable?

These seals were sunbathing. Notice the one "looking" at the camera!

This is the bay area at Monterey.

More seals...this time at Monterey.

Waves crashing on huge rocks at Monterey.
Along the drive on Highway 1. Tracey was kind enough to stay behind with me and take some extra pictures.
Big Sur/Carmel down Highway 1.

Here is the infamous Big Sur bridge. It is was not as large as I thought. Not by far the Big, yes Sur!

Isn't it amazing how the mountains just burst out from the sea and the beach. I wish you could see it in person!

The view from the top of "Hurricane Hill" around Big Sur.
In Carmel by the Sea, we saw candy shops and lollipops.
And boots galore...
And some people with ulterior motives..
And alligator surprises.
Cute candy shops with moss growing from the rooftops.
Along the 17 mile drive at Pebble Beach. This "pebble" looks like an egg. I'm sure I didn't put it there.

The Lone Cypress. This tree, along with any photographs of the same, is copyrighted. Isn't that amazing? I know you want to buy this photo - sorry Charlie! It's illegal. Wow.

And we saw men practicing putting at Pebble Beach Golf Resort.

But we were able to visit the 18th hole at Pebble Beach. The big game doesn't happen until June but people were already setting up stages and tents for television.
Here's a group of our ladies who came along for the trip. I look like a giant for a couple of reasons: I'm the tallest of the group AND I'm on the uppermost side of the hill.
Artichokes grow wild, sort of. These artichokes were in the flower beds at the hotel, for decoration. I'm standing up straight so these are taller than me, probably about 6 feet tall.
On Friday we drove the 17 mile drive at Pebble Beach. Breathtaking! Brian and I went 4 years ago but Pebble Beach was quite foggy when we got there. This time, we drove the route backwards so there wasn't any fog at Pebble Beach Golf & Resort.
On Saturday, we drove down Highway 1 to Big Sur. Uhhh....have any of you been to the town of Big Sur? Blink and you'll miss it. Literally. We found 2 restaurants, one of which also had the post office, the only gas station we saw, 2 small stores, a coffee shop and a convenience store. That was it! Crazy stuff. No cell service, either. It is OUT there! But, absolutely beautiful. Tucked between towering cedar, redwood, eucalyptus and pine trees but just a couple of miles away from the huge cliffs and rocks along the coast. Still absolutely beautiful. We drove the route to the start of the marathon. Once we drove the route, boy was I glad I didn't sign up for the marathon or the 21 miler! Although, the 10.6 miler had the most hills...they were bearable!

Sunday: Met the buses that took me to the 10.6 miler start point. Saw the sun come up over the mountains lining the coast north of Big Sur. The race began and toward the end, I was able to see the first three men who finished the marathon. Also saw the guy who won the 21 mile run. It was pretty neat to see those guys - FLY - past me! We cheered them on with claps and screams. I stopped 4 or 5 times to take photos with my phone of the scenery. I cannot say enough how beautiful this place is! I didn't take an ipod or have any music. It was just me, the wind (yes, there was a good bit of it at times), the road and that beautiful coast...oh, and the other runners. There were also several walkers. Many of them seemed to have forgotten the rule to walk only 2 abreast - they liked to take up the whole road. For that reason, there was a little weaving in and out of people involved. Nothing like New York, though.

Sunday afternoon following lunch in Carmel, I went my own way and did a little shopping Carmel by the sea before heading to the sea. I basked in the sun on the coast in Carmel by the sea. It was windy, the waves were crashing down but the sun was a gentle warm! Almost like snuggling up with a slightly warm blanket. The waves literally crashed! They were so loud. I quickly realized no one was surfing or swimming very far out because the undertow had to be significant and the waves would have hurt someone.
Anyway, I left on a Thursday and returned an hour or so before midnight on Monday.
It. Was. A. Long. Time. To be away from Troy!!! No, I didn't have a fit or anything but I thought about him often! Brian was, thankfully, so gracious to send me photos of him daily...many photos! I cannot say how helpful that was to get me through the day! I pumped while over there....and it all went down - the - drain. Ugh. What a waste, right? But, I didn't want to have to keep up with the milk. It would have been a pain. When I got back, it was like I never left...Troy didn't get upset when he saw me like I thought he might. It was all back to normal. Thank the Lord!

Do you ever get "advice" or comments from other people. I'm sure you don't, I'm sure it's just me. But, some people like to give me advice. Case in point: Troy will probably cry when he sees you. Not this time, maybe next...

This weekend is Mother's Day weekend. Nothing but relaxing for this first time mother.


Kelly Denise said...

Looks like y'all had a great time
Very cute pics. The one that I like the most is the Seapup looking at you......too cute

I am planing a trip to California(LA, SD and Anaheim area) for next year.

Happy Mother's Day to you

Shana said...

what a FUN trip!! I loved all the details...

happy mother's day, weesy.