Eventually, the busy Santa Clara Valley landscape changed to seascapes and rural, rolling hills. A couple of hours later, we reached our destination of Carmel. I might have been more impressed that Clint Eastwood used to be Mayor but after the most recent Republican National Convention and that conversation with the empty chair... but anyway, back to Carmel.
|In one of Carmel's many charming cafes; J is well-trained in coffee culture!|
Oh and did I mention that Carmel townspeople are MAD about their dogs??? Mad, as in every shop has a dog water bowl in front of its door, and most boast signage welcoming their canine friends inside. Ok so great coffee - check! Innovative restaurants boasting local and seasonal fare - check! Most restaurants encourage you to bring your own wine - check! Awesome beach - check! Love dogs - check, check. Hello!!!! I have stumbled into paradise!
We stayed in a sweet little Inn, steps from the beach which offered afternoon tea, sherry, and biscuits. Late in the afternoon, the three of us curled up on stuffed sofas in the front room of the inn with our books and indulged in a little of all three. Later, we wandered up to a wine shop, settled on a California Pinot Noir (which proved outstanding), and made our reservation at Basil, a tiny, jewel of an organic restaurant with a divine menu and equal service. It was a memorable evening.
|Mr. Whiskers - the 20-year old resident cat at our Inn|
In any case, we made our destination of Los Angeles by early evening. But that's fodder for Part 4!