So we got lotsa snow. Just keeeeeeps on comin.’  Luckily, Henry is super good at turning it into fun (often by helping me shovel, which is awesome)


Nothing like a good snow tunnel


But sometimes, you need a break. My answer to that was a weekend in California with Julia!


Friday was a workday for her, so I went for a wander in San Francisco. I had a definite plan for my day, but a minor bus snafu was enough to get me to let go of the plan and just follow my heart instead. And I’m so glad I did!

My heart led me here


and here


and here


You get the idea. It was glorious to walk in a beautiful city (without a winter parka) and just see what came next.


This is the only spotting I had of the Golden Gate Bridge, even though a bus I rode literally took me past the bridge’s visitor center. It was soooo foggy.


Oh hey, Prison Island


The Wave Organ. I was 100% planning to come here. Then I changed my plan, then I ended up here…then I decided the extra backtracking involved in actually getting out to that point was too much. But at least I saw it.


I hoped The Doctor might pop out!




Coastal Trail


Bath ruins at Land’s End


So Land’s End was pretty much the ONLY thing I knew I definitely wanted to do in San Francisco, and it was just the prettiest ever. The whole park is incredible


I climbed down a few different trails to the water, looking for the fabled Land’s End Labyrinth. I found lots of other things instead. In this particular area, I was pretty sure someone was lurking and waiting to leap out and attack, but luckily all was fine and I got a great view of the water.



Just when I’d almost given up hope that the labyrinth really existed, a kindly fellow told me I was thirty steps away from that trail. Another woman chimed in telling me it was down the bazillion steps.


She wasn’t wrong


I definitely thought this was the labyrinth (there are cairns in there that you can’t really see) and was disappointed for a bit…but then I looked around! Soooo pretty. The sound of the ocean is the best of all the sounds.




Then, on the way back, I decided to take a side trail for a higher view.

And there she was!


I walked the paths til everyone else left and then walked some more while listening to the waves punch the rocks below.

Eventually, I had to go back up those bajillion steps, but I was so happy I even enjoyed it


When I got to the top, I got the good news that Julia was off work early, so we each snagged buses to meet up on Haight Street for some cheese and beer


En route, I saw this dude. What?!


Just look at some of these lovelies!


Twin Peaks was calling to Julia, so we ascended via cab and observed some seriously rolling fog. It was beautiful, and cool to see the area from above.


I liked the sign on this residential street up there.


We went back downtown and to Berkeley and ultimately back to good ol’ Temescal, her neighborhood in Oakland.


Saturday morning, I roamed the ‘hood for a few hours before we headed up to wine country.

Okay, look at this:



Literally the view from our campsite. It could not have been more incredible. Or so I thought, but then the next morning the fog rolled in, and it was more incredible. You’ll see in a moment.

After a hilarious ride in an inflatable boat that was neither kayak nor canoe, but somewhere in between, we enjoyed the sunset from a nearby overlook. This is Lake Sonoma, btw, in case you have any idea about where that is.


My camping companions: Julia and her friend-and-neighbor


We tried to do the timer-thing on my camera, so here they are, holding the place where I’ll join the photo.


We did not figure it out. So we had a nearby astronomy student do the honors.


See?! The view!


The tent where Julia read me to sleep


This is love, right here


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