Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Monterey or Bust!

We did it! We went to Monterey! WHOO HOO! Mom and I headed out at dawn on Friday and the entire road trip was incredible! We had the best time and it was non-stop fun! We only had one lil mishap.................it looked a little something like this:
We were passing thru Irvine and I noticed the car next to us must have hit the car in front of him cuz their was smoke and his front end was completely pushed in. Just then mom slammed on the brakes!! Her car is so gnarly we didnt even feel the car going from 70 to a stop! Smoke everywhere, cars hitting each other behind us, screeching and she sees another car about to hit us from the rear side..............she throws it into drive and in 1 second we were outta there! No one hit us but she could see everything going on behind us and she said "should we stop?" I said "NO! GO GO GO!" and we got the flock outta there! She was still shaking and realized she had so much adrenaline she was about to pass out. She started seeing stars so I began fanning her with a magazine.............after a few minutes of laughing, crying and giving a special thanks to moms NASCAR driving skills we made it out without a scratch. Miracle one.

We figured after that incident we were golden. So we continued on our journey up north. WHEW!

We got to Santa Barbara and decided to stop for brunch and a celebration of being alive with a mimosa ;-)
We had yummi egg white omlettes at Shell Cafe' and then jumped back on the highway of death. ha ha

As we made our way we had chips and ranch dressing and that was it all the way to Monterey. Our GPS navigation system was working but we kept not believing it and called our hotel from time to time. Sure enough still 2 hours away. How is that possible? Seemed like we had been driving forever!

Off the 101 and exit Sanborn. FINALLY! Now we're on 68 and heading into the Monterey Peninsula. Lord almighty! 7 straight hours of driving!!!!!We arrive at the Lighthouse Lodge and just like the brochure said..........1/2 block to the beach! Incredible. Well. Their is a catch. See below video:

All we could do is pour a glass of wine and get over it! We have beautiful deer to our right and just beyond several folks who are no longer living is the gorgeous ocean! Hey the hotel is free so we wont complain! ;-) The show must go on!!!!

We gathered our bearings and headed into town. Parked front row and went into Scheid for a wine tasting. We really just wanted a glass but they didnt do "by the glass" so they were super nice and showed us where to go. Well none of those places were cozy looking so we walked back into Scheid. The girl was so nice she said......."How bout I just give you 4 tastings of the same wine?" Hip hip hooray! YES! The decor was warm and inviting and we sat next to the fireplace and sipped our chardonnay. The manager came up and gave us an extra tasting of the RESERVE as we chatted with him about the building and the town. We told him we were going to the Sardine Factory for dinner and he said "OH well if you buy wine here there is no corking fee there!" Well that was an easy sale. ;-) *MOM*


We laughed and took these pics like this on purpose and all night we would look at the pics back and forth and roll laughing that we look alike and say MOM now ME - MOM now ME - MOM now ME over and over. Maybe you had to be there but we thought it was hilarious!

We went to the Sardine Factory after our tasting and had Steak and Salmon and just so happened to be seated in the most gorgeous seat in the house. The Conservatory.

Our dinner and service were incredible. This is all DAY 1!

In the morning we got up, I grabbed us breakfast from the continental breakfast bar and we headed to 17 Mile to take the coastal drive to Pebble Beach for lunch. :-) First we have to grab gas and cash. We stop in town and as we make a U-turn and are driving to the bank I realize.........Did I just see what I thought I saw? "MOM TURN AROUND!" She whips a U-ie and we pull up to this church:
Of course we stopped. Said a prayer. Got choked up. Then continued on in amazement.

The drive to Pebble Beach is beautiful. The scenery is like nothing youve ever seen. Huge trees and forest with the ocean peeking thru. We got to the Pebble Beach Lodge and were seated directly overlooking the 18th hole! Miracle 2.

As we were leaving Pebble Beach a man asked if we were going to Carmel. We hadnt really thought much about it but he gave us a map and said its literally 5 minutes from here. Um ok, duh...........so off we went! Got into Carmel, bought some t-shirts, walked around a little then headed back to Pacific Grove/Monterey.

We stopped at the butterfly sanctuary which..........big surprise...........just happened to be a block from our hotel! Thousands of butterflies.................So beautiful. Afterwards we drove back into Monterey, had a little bite to eat then over to Bargetto for a wine tasting. They were so nice there and we just totally enjoyed all the great service. We each bought a bottle. YAY!

As you can imagine, by now, we are pooped! We think we are going to go to the hotel and nap then head back out for dinner. What troopers we are. NOT!!!!!!!!!!!!! We got to the hotel. Put on the fireplace. Watched a movie and ordered in. HE HE All of this was DAY 2!

Ok..............last day.............Wake up, shower, pack and off we go! Hop onto HWY 1 for a beautiful stroll home down the coast to San Diego. (Im laughing as I write this) Um............HWY 1 is anything but a stroll. Beautiful yes. But a stroll? No. Its a 2 lane HWY on a 200 foot cliff with no barriers! My worst nightmare! Well I tried to be brave and enjoy it but it was not easy. Mom did great. She was fine and wanted to go 80 in a 40 zone but I would scream and tantrum til she slowed down. yes, Im a brat. But to me it looked like this will be us soon:

Minus the boat but this is how I envisioned us if Dannika didnt slow down!

We started seeing restaurants and rest stops that said Big Sur. Oh...............we said............we must be in BIG SUR! Hi we're blonde! We kept seeing places to stop but werent feelin it. Finally we came around a tight bend and mom said "Here?" "Yes!" I said. We ended up at Deetjen's Big Sur Inn. Its been there since the early 1930's and is now a historical landmark. As we ate our brunch we asked to hear the story of the Inn. The owner brought us several books to go thru. To our surprise and bewilderment the one place we pick was built and owned by a Norwegian man named Helmuth Deetjen. We pick the one place owned by a Norwegian. Again. We're choked up. We ate and talked and realized............hey we need to get back on the road! Here is the Big Sur Inn:
All the photos of Helmuth over the years are in the background - Sunlight on my pretty mom

Our awesome window table overlooking the pine trees and flowers outside:-)

Well.............after breakfast we hopped back on the 1 and headed to Paso Robles, up the 46 to HWY 101! Sidenote: (HWY 46 is the wine country row......how we ended up on it is just a twist of fate) We stopped at Laetitia Vineyard for our picnic and that was all she wrote. Literally! We jammed back to San Diego and made it home by 615pm. Record time thanks to KT aka. Dannika Patrick! Mom, that was a great trip. So many memories. I love you, Ang


linda said...

OMG! I wish you and me and KT could hang for an hour or so, and re-live that trip. How wonderful. Hope you got some good sleep last night, 'cause I know you didn't during the trip. Hoooray! Awesome, the butterflies, all of it. Wow! Love you ,Lin

Melissa said...

First of all..HILARIOUS that you added the visuals just so we would no what you were going through! Do you remember anything about the beauty of the 1 or we just scared poopless??! Such a wonderful trip for you and your Mom...the wine, the food, the scenery..all perfect.
Thanks for sharing the journey..it's almost(not really :-)) like being there too!