Summer Hiking

Summer Hiking
Mt. Constitution

Monday, March 19, 2012

Palo Alto, Part III

Perhaps we saved the best for last...our trip to Carmel and Pebble Beach's 17 mile drive.  We didn't really set a time to get up and get going, but realized a little too late that we'd lost an hour before we even got out of the house because of daylight savings time.  We enjoyed a great breakfast at Calafia - "slow food served fast."  Kalle told us this organic restaurant was owned by Google's Chef.  They also promote "farm shares" and people can choose to receive a bushel or a peck of  fresh, organic produce every week.

The drive to Carmel took about 85 minutes and I enjoyed all the scenery - we drove through Gilroy, CA, the garlic capital of the world.  Actually we saw lots of acres of growing goodness and wished the farmers had labelled the fields.  I believed they were strawberry fields!  Carmel is a quaint beach town with unique shops and hotels.  We did walk in the sand and get the beach view of Pebble Beach Golf Links - where famous people play golf on TV!

Christina recently stayed at Doris Day's hotel, The Cypress Inn, so she wanted us to see this boutique hotel.  We enjoyed some great tea in the courtyard, keeping warm by an outdoor fireplace. Guests arriving at the Cypress Inn in Carmel, California, with their dog will find some doggie treats on the check-in desk to keep their pet happy while they register. The Cypress Inn, co-owned by film star Doris Day, a great animal lover, is renowned as being one of the most pet-friendly hotels along the Pacific Coast. Pooches are petted and pampered, hotel guests compare notes about their animals, and the hotel provides a list of pet-friendly restaurants all over Carmel.
Carmel's Cypress Inn is not only pet-friendly, it's a historic hotel too. It was opened in 1929 on the site of what had been an artist's studio, and was previously known as the Hotel La Ribera. When it opened the local press called it "one of the show places of the Monterey Peninsula," and it remains so to this day.
Today the Cypress Inn in Carmel is a favorite stop on California's Pacific Coast Highway. It is just two blocks and a short walk away from the picturesque town center, which is full of boutique shops, restaurants and art galleries. And with its celebrity residents and visitors, there's always the chance of spotting a Hollywood star about town. After all, Clint Eastwood once held the post of mayor, and still owns a popular bar and a restaurant in town.
Christina made reservations for us to enjoy dinner at The Inn at Spanish Bay, but first we stopped at The Lodge at Pebble Beach.  The Lodge is the heart and soul of Pebble Beach and home to the famous golf course.  We stopped there just to enjoy the views.

We were eager to get to Spanish Bay to hear the bagpiper as he winds his way from the 18th hole to the  Inn.  He closes the course every evening.

The sunset was just beautiful and a great finale to a wonderful day.  Kati and I stayed up and reviewed all the highlights of this great trip.  We've enjoyed several trips together, but this one was even more special because we appreciated Kalle and Christina's hospitality.




Christina's Art - the names of train stops in Sweden
So, the sun set on our lovely holiday.  We'd talked over and over about all the George's in Kati's life.(Big George, her son-in-law; little George, her grandson, and Sporty George, her special friend.)  We discussed future travel plans perhaps to Norway and Scotland.  I marveled at the way Kalle and Christina make friends and how kind they are to every server that waited on us in all the restaurants we visited.  They make a special point to get to know the servers, find out about their lives, and remember their stories for the next visit.  They both know how to make people feel special.  Kalle told his Mom about a man who often assists him in surgery and how much he appreciates his initiative and ability to know what the surgeon needs.  Kalle's gratitude touched me because he also knew this man had two children who have cerebral palsy and worked his way through college to ensure a better life for his family.  The warmth of the sunny California weather and the warmth of this young family touched my soul and all the places where memories are stored!  Thank you, Kati, for another great trip!

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