Since last Saturday was my birthday, Dai and I took a little drive down the coast to spend the day in Carmel. The weather was perfect, about 60 degrees and clearly sunny, which I know is just heart breaking to my friends and family spread out in the mid-west and east cost. I'm sorry guys, I'm really sorry. But, it was my birthday after all, so I'm not that sorry ;)
We stopped at Pebble Beach, and entered a CA state park that has a 17 mile scenic drive through the forestry, golf courses, beaches, and multi-million (like 17 million) dollar homes (of course).
We drove with the windows rolled down and took in the salty breeze. We stopped wherever we pleased to admire the beautiful scenery and take photos.
At one end of the drive, there were gates that let us exit the state park and dropped us off into the town of Carmel, our chosen destination. And then the adventure continued.
Carmel is small, cute, charming, and a bit whimsical. It is also full of tourists, but I actually don't mind. We spent some time walking around, until we decided that ice cream was a necessity. We stopped into a local bakery and ice cream shop, and each got a scoop. Salted caramel for me, of course, and butter pecan for Dai. We also got a few other treats to share and sat on a bench outside the public library to people watch.
We later got some deli sandwiches and had a picnic in the park. Its nice that Dai and I are the same kind of lunch people. We are both happy with sandwiches and iced tea, and even happier when we can make it a picnic. After our picnic, we continued to walk around the cute town, going in and out of shops. I talked myself out of buying this $80 necklace from Kate Spade NY (which I just might talk myself back into), and treated myself with a new shirt from the Anthro sale racks.
I had been to Carmel once before, but it is much cuter than I remember it being. I would love to come stay here for the weekend at one of the many whimsy inns or bed and breakfasts. I don't think I could entertain myself in the town all weekend, but we did see many nice restaurants we would like to try and there is exploring to be done at Big Sur not too far away.
We ended the afternoon by walking on the beach to enjoy the colorful sunset. The sand itself was so cold I could have sworn I was walking on snow, but ultimately, I didn't mind. The waves were so loud and strong, even though they were breaking so close to shore. I felt small, standing here on the beach, but I was happy. I was happy that the first day of my new decade of life had turned out with me standing on the beach at sunset, truly one of my favorite things.
It really is good to be alive.