Monday, January 25, 2010


San Francisco: park walks, large portions of food, climbing that hill.

New Year's Day: recovery through reflection, a view from the Berkeley hills, a dry movie.
Who threw us together?
Before hitting the Bay Area, we spent some time in Big Sur in this mobile Mongolian housing turned into a stationary cliff side Big Sur get away. Pretty amazing space to sleep in, beautiful light coming in through the ceiling.

One of the coolest tree houses/nests ever at the Big Sur yurt hotel.

On the way back home, a stop through Yosemite to romp in the snow under Half Dome.
A mossy icicle snack.

Justin and crow, and a salty tamale lunch in the snow.
Pink apples packed for our lunch, eaten with a tinge of sadness (for the house and family left behind) in the LAX airport.
And then, like nothing we were back. Half of me was so happy to be back, and the other half couldn't help but fixate on where the next place will be, what the next adventures of Kelly and Justin will be...
Oh, but so wonderful to have the first meal back at our favorite organic home style Japanese restaurant. My stomach knows where home is.

Purple sweet potato, carrot salad!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Winter Snow, Winter Sun

I woke up in the dark and opened the front door to find that everything had been covered in the finest powder snow. It was falling like thick fluff, and can you imagine, it was my first time in falling snow since I was 5 or so. The most incredible powdery snow, the kind that outdoor malls in Southern California try to achieve by blowing fine foam into the air, fell all day today.
For reasons that would be scoffed at by anyone who is from snow country, school was canceled (my school is on a "steep" hill and public transport didn't want to brave it) and so I spent the morning walking along the river near my house in awe of this stuff. Apologies for my naivete, but as a Southern Californian who has not had enough experience to teach me otherwise, snow has a magic for me. I spent this morning laughing like a child at the snow falling and the sound it made when I walked over it and the sound it made on my umbrella and how fluffy it was.

Too joyful to focus.
I never knew!
I couldn't get the best picture because there aren't too many old houses in my neighborhood, but there is something about how the snow settled on the traditional Japanese houses that was so incredibly beautiful and fitting. A sort of "yessss! I am in that calender picture of Japan" moment.
Views out my window.
Mmm, but it is absolutely freezing in my tin can house now, a freezing that my heater can't defeat. My usual tactics of sitting in the sauna for half an hour to ensure that my body heat doesn't drop before I get under the duvet have failed to save me and I am glad to also see this side of snow.
It seems like another world now, but on Christmas Eve there were tamales on Bates Beach.
And Christmas breakfast on the sunny deck.

Oh, to need a sunhat in December and a basket of cactus fruit!
Big Sur Beach walk at Jade Cove.

Real bacon, cinnamon roles, and salmon omelette in the sun.
Walking dogs on the beach. Walking dogs in the hills.
California, you leave me conflicted. I can never return without thinking "why did I leave?" And simultaneously, "I am leaving again."

The idea of California seems to be absurd to others - a warm sunny Christmas? But from here, bundled in all of my sweaters, contemplating how to best weatherproof myself tomorrow, this all seems absurd.