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14 December 2008

California Dreamin'

I was going to call this blog entry "Ventura Highway" but I figured that not a lot of people would get the significance, other than the song by America. For some reason, during most of my trip back home to California this past week, I had that song running through my mind. Well, that and the title of this blog entry, "California Dreamin" which is another great song by the Mamas and Papas.

It's funny, but it seems that these last several trips home over the last several months have taken on a very nostalgic feel. Maybe because I'm returning to places I have been to over and over again. Maybe because I am sharing the travels with my new husband and my mother. My husband has ne
ver traveled in California, and my old places are new to him. My mother and I spend most of the road talking about this adventure, or that restaurant. How my uncle did this on one trip, or how we stopped for a picnic between those trees on another.

During this week, we did the day trip up north of Santa Barbara to a little Danish settlement of Solvang. The buildings are reminiscent of towns in Denmark. There are lots of shops that sell Danish imports; great restaurants that sell Danish fare, and now the more popular wine bars with tastings. Lot of local wineries, so some great samplings to be had.

The other thing that Solvang is famous for is its baked goods, especially its butter cookies. Tins and tubs of butter cookies. You can see them right now during the holidays when those paper-wrapped goodies are on every counter in the hospital. Darn blue tins.

The other part of the trip that I always enjoy is seeing the ocean again. They say that the Pacific has a memory, and I have a lot of memories of the Pacific. Especially driving along PCH (Pacific Coast Highway, Hwy 1). We pulled off the road in Malibu on our way back to catch the sunset. For a few brief moments we sat in silence watching the last of the days' final rays reach across the water.

A sailboat made its way across the waters. As darkness fell, we pulled back on the road and continued our way home.

The rest of the week was filled with Christmas shopping with my mother, family affairs, and a lot of just plain old relaxing and lazing around the house. Not to mention eating just about all of my favorites while I was in town. Tomorrow back to the reality of the Emergency Department. Albeit, a bit more refreshed. More optimistic. Ready to carry forth.

Oh, and I lucked out just a bit: my upcoming rotation is a split month between the ED's at ECMC and Buffalo General, however, due to scheduling, I will only be doing two shifts at the General and the rest of my shifts at ECMC including Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Sucks to work the holidays, but I anticipate a much pleasanter environment. We'll see!


a corgi said...

welcome back! so glad you enjoyed your visit to California and time with your family! I love Solvang; haven't been there in years, but it is such a nice place to visit!

hoping your first day back on shift isn't too rough


Jeanie said...

Ah! The Mamas and the Papas! I love that song and find it so redolent of the times when I was young.
It doesn't matter where you settle, home is where the familiar was, and the memories were made. It's so lovely to try and share those feelings with someone new. It's like wakening up to what stirred you, and was meaningful to you, without your being aware of it at the time.
That seemed like a unique town you visited. I loved the photo of it.
Great to have you back again. Glad you are rested too.
Jeanie xxx

Julie said...

I would love to see the ocean again, I was 5 the last time and still remember it and can almost smell. Danish cookies, oh my MIL made them every Christmas plus many other danish treats. Hope the next rotation isn't a nightmare

ADB said...

Nice to hear you had a good trip back to CA. Enjoy your Christmas!

Claudia's thoughts said...

Glad you are back....The only time I was in CA was at the LA airport.. I love the ocean and it would seem odd to me to watch the sun go down instead of coming up over it....
How did your hsuband like the trip. There are a lot of place I would like to see, from San Francisco, Napa Valley to the scenic wonders of the National Parks.....Bet you did not miss the snow....