California Dreaming, on such a winter’s day”
- “California Dreaming” by The Mamas and the Papas.
I AM safe and warm, as long as I stay inside. But outside, it’s a different story.
Our current bitterly cold temperatures, plus a recent visit to San Francisco by Lila of “Indigo Pears” and a meme challenge by Imelda at “Greenish Lady” have me doing some California Dreaming.
Part of Imelda’s challenge was to name five places I’d like to visit, or return to. So today let's go across the continent and back across the years, for a trip down memory lane - a lane that's covered with flowers and scented with warm breezes.
It’s been nearly 20 years since my one and only trip to Northern California. I left just one part of my heart in San Francisco. The other part stayed in the Monterey Peninsula – at the Green Gables Inn in Pacific Grove, the aquarium in Monterey, the quaint shops in Carmel By the Sea.
It meant so much to me, having sat in the Minneapolis airport watching them de-ice my plane just a day or two before, to walk around in a lightweight coat, see primroses and tulips blooming and visit Golden Gate Park on a warm sunny day in February.
To me, the booming surf on the beach at Carmel, the otter-watching rocks and the Lone Cypress on the 17-mile drive between Pacific Grove and Carmel are sacred places. The Monterey Peninsula felt like home to me and still calls to me all these years later.
We stayed in The Sea Lion Room in the carriage house.
My late brother, his wife and me
The courtyard at the Green Gables Inn.
Flowers!!! In February!!!
And blooming Magnolias! I am in heaven.
Here are four other places I'd like to visit/re-visit:
2. I’d like to spend a week or two in Florence, seeing as many churches and museums as I could, then I’d rent a Tuscan villa for a month. (If you dream, you might as well dream big!)
3. After hearing a friend rave about Budapest and my daughter rave about Prague, I’d like to visit those two cities. They’re close enough to each other to be combined into one trip.
4. I’d like to go to Venice, and I’d like Britt-Arnhild ("Britt-Arnhild's House in the Woods") to accompany me as my guide.
As I mentioned earlier, Imelda’s meme had three parts. The second part was to name five weird things about myself. Just five???
1. I hate fresh peas from the garden, and new potatoes. With the new potatoes, it’s because they’re boiled with the icky skins on. With the fresh peas, it’s just that I grew up on canned peas. My grandma and mom never gardened so I wasn't introduced to fresh veggies. Now I love things like fresh spinach - it’s nothing like that “moss from the cow tank” that is canned spinach.
2. I hate “The Wizard of Oz”. When I was a kid, I had to leave the room whenever it was on. I think it was because of those darned Munchkins and a vague memory of some screeching, flying things.
3. I don’t like to have a top sheet. We use a nice cozy comforter on our bed, and I find that to be all I need to cover me. The top sheet always gets tangled at the bottom of the bed anyway.
4. I didn’t have pizza until I was a freshman in college, or Mexican food until I was a sophomore. Lord knows when I first tried Chinese food.
5. I love to go to the movies and eat buttered popcorn and Junior Mints – together.
The third part of the meme is: Five things I never foresaw in my future when I was 25. I dutifully wrote my list and it made me so depressed I tore it up. Instead, let me tell you what I saw in my future: