Thursday, April 4, 2013

D is for Description

This is going to sound presumptuous. Am I really going to try to describe California?

Picture what you know about California. Do you see the streets of Hollywood or the beautiful Yosemite Valley? Do you picture the alien landscape as you leave the Coachella Valley towards the Chiriaco Summit where the dirt colored hills do not support any life at all. Even in spring, there are no plants, weeds, or trees.

If you start the day in the Redwood Grove at Yosemite, you can end up at Mono Lake. The redwood grove is spectacular and the last time we took a friend to see it, the magnificent trees overwhelmed him. Then we headed for Mono Lake by way of Bodie, my favorite ghost town.  

Ending our day at Mono Lake was just the icing on the cake. If you have not been there, the Tufa is otherworldly and it’s fun to play with the ground flies.  It is hard to believe that all three places are within a day’s drive. 

California is a land of extremes. It is not only the landscape; it is just about everything else. 

California has some of the best surf beaches in the world. It also has some of the best places to ski. Mount Whitney is the tallest mountain in the contiguous United States and Death Valley is on the list as one of the hottest deserts on the planet.  

Everything is more expensive in California. We love it when we travel out of state; gas is so much cheaper. However, if you are looking for a selection of fruits and vegetables, we have everything. 

The freeway system in the Los Angeles area is extreme. As much as I would like to describe it, all I can say is that culture shock is inevitable. It seems like hundreds of freeways cross each other every few miles. You just need to know that if you get on the wrong freeway, another will cross it in a few miles to take you to your destination. 

Distance is measured in time and not miles. I can’t tell you how many miles it is from my house to San Diego but it's an hour and a half away. If I want to eat dinner at Anthony’s Fish Grotto on the San Diego wharf, I need to leave home around 3:00 pm. BTW, it’s my favorite restaurant in San Diego and be sure to ask for a window seat. 

My husband, grandson and I on Mother's Day at Anthony's Fish Grotto

California is a little hard to explain. I guess the best way to describe it is to say that if you are looking for a certain something, it will be here. 


  1. Hi- just dropping in from the A-Z Challenge and I love your California description. I'm missing Cali today for sure! I lived in the San Francisco/Bay Area when I was a kid and miss it every day since we moved back East. Reading your post made me really happy and homesick for California- :)

  2. You know, Ann, you probably could devote an entire blog to describing California...just the beaches alone, in fact. Love your hair, btw. Very cute indeed. And this post makes me smile:)

  3. Right now, I'm sat in my very cold living room looking out at a grey sky over the south west of the UK. And I am so jealous. Send some sunshine our way please!
    Coffintree Hill

  4. Great info about your Lovely place called California
    I a here via M J's place
    Keep inform
    Ann P V

  5. Hi Ann--so glad to have found your blog via the Challenge. I've lived in California for 55+ years and look forward to reading your posts!

  6. Another great post Ann! You are right about the freeways in LA, we were picking up a relative from LAX the other day and missed the turning for the 405, the Satnav soon found another freeway for us to get home to irvine. I totally agree when you mention everything being expensive...I thought the UK was expensive but everything costs twice as more over than it did back home (except for gas and cigarettes). I'll be back tomorrow to check it the letter E

  7. Mono Lake and Bodie sound interesting. I like the light tone of this post - with your personal observations and comments, like how long it takes you to get to your favorite restaurant in SD.

  8. I know that the traffic out there is ridiculous. I just don't know if I could take that or not!

  9. I love that you are such a strong ambassador for California. It's easy to think of California as one giant Hollywood, but you're proving that there's so much more.


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