Santa Cruz!

Summer camp ended a week ago. My fall schedule doesn’t kick in until after Labor Day. If I hadn’t taken that vacation right in the middle of summer I’d be all about some travel right now, but instead my bank account is kindly letting me know another vacation is not in my best interest. That’s okay tho, I was able to fill these two weeks of down time with gym cleaning (mat disinfecting, foam pit-emptying and cleaning, inventory) and some babysitting. I’m also starting to work at a new gym and had a ton of training with them this past week, and that’s exciting! For many reasons, one of them being that it’s within biking distance of my house :)

So I’ve been busy, but I’ve decided to still take some little trips. I scheduled all that busy work so that I’d have Friday off and took off for a long weekend in Santa Cruz, a picturesque surf town about 90 minutes south of the bay area. My handsome significant other lived here a few years back and was more than excited to share his hometown.  We packed up the tent, some rock climbing gear, and wetsuits and headed south for a brief stint of adventurin’.IMG_3117

It started out on the rocks. Literally.

While I spent most of my childhood (and adult life, if we’re being real) climbing- into things, on things, over things- I never formally got into rock climbing. A little bit because my stubborn and impatient personality does not lend itself to learning the ways of ropes and harnesses and learning routes. Plus, you have to wear shoes. And any sport that you have to wear shoes for has kind of a yellow flag by it in my book.  But at the end of the day, I do love the sport of climbing. Using your body in creative ways to scale rocks. I really, really love that part. Which is why I really lucked out with this trip.

My traveling partner is already a climbing pro, in my eyes at least. He knows the ins and outs of knots and how to climb where and how to do so safely. He’s a patient teacher and willing to take the reins when I start to ramble about how useless ropes are and how lame and time consuming it is to set everything up correctly. (Again, a bit impatient and a tiny bit stubborn). And by the time I eat a snack and get my spirits up, we’re ready to do the fun part! And this particular trip was mostly fun parts. We went out to a place called… not castle rock.. but some place near there..(Indian Rock perhaps?) and the rocks were perfect. Nice and pumice-y, easy to hang from. Just challenging enough that you have to think about your route, but not too hard that you get discouraged. And there’s a view. A pretty stellar one at that. (Think looking up toward the bottom of the bay area and the city of San Jose).IMG_3130

The day came to quite a perfect close as well. We went by this little deli on the way home and scored some perfect humus and crackers. Perhaps we were just really hungry, but the “smoked tomato and basil” hummus and the bean-base chips were the best snack ever. Yes I realize how California that entire sentence was, but it was completely true. And the food is certainly one enormous perk to living out here, the options and thought put into meals is unparalleled.IMG_3177

THEN there was Pizza for dinner. I accidentally typed that with a capital “P,” but in all honesty, that felt kind of right, so I left it. Engfor Pizza to be more specific. So perfect. I don’t know what he ordered exactly (he used to work here, I entrusted him with the perfect pizza picking), but somehow all of my favorite toppings ended up on this delicious crust. Artichokes and olives and spinach and tomatoes and delicious. Did I mention there was an enormous bright-white full moon? I really dropped the ball on picture taking this trip.

Then the final day played out.

Top on my list was getting some surfing in, I’m talking enormous boards and little waves. Perfect for learning, and accompanying those who are learning :) The impact of simply dunking underwater in an ocean is really an indescribable thing. I wonder if other people have similar ways to feel so alive. But mine is certainly saltwater. Surfing is a bonus, but simply being in and under water is enough to make me feel connected to the world in some crazy powerful way. And I squeezed it in!IMG_3121

On the way home we caught sunset at a place that I think is called Panther Beach. It was some awesome bouldering right on the sand. The holds were so perfect that I just wanted to keep going up and up and I was losing site of practicality, safety, and the fact that I was kicking dust onto everyone down below me. So I reeled it in, but enjoyed a sunset climb nonetheless :) 20150830_194002

And then home again home again. A short fun work week before life really kicks into gear next week. But not before one more long weekend trip. Stay tuned :)

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