i convinced myself yesterday, after returning home from a morning’s drive in the mountains, that if i left moss cottage by 11:50 a.m. i could scoot up to the central coast and be in cambria by 4 p.m.
just in time for this open house.
surely it’s not everyday that a cottage on the central coast with a library and a wrap-around garden nestled among a rare stand of monterey pines comes up for sale. surely!
doesn’t it look exactly like the setting for a rosamunde pilcher novel? featuring a 60-something former school teacher from los angeles who retires and moves to fog shrouded cambria to live out her days among a cast of quirky characters and misfits by the sea. yeah. i thought so too.
i was staring down at the fungi wrapping its way around a set of oak stumps in my garden when the RP cottage went on the market. i am certain i felt a a chill at the exact moment.
or it could have just been the exceptionally frosty weather we’re having. i can’t be sure.
in any case, i threw a few necessities in a trader joe’s bag and prepared to jump back into my chariot and hit the road. an impromptu road trip! oh joy!
but then i thought of the snarl of traffic that could slow me down and my mind catapulted me ahead to 6 pm and saw me barely chugging past the madonna inn on hwy 101 just outside of san luis obispo. i imagined my bitterly disappointed self completely missing the open house and having to wait until 1 pm sunday for the other one. i thought of the race back to LA in time for work on monday. drat. it wasn’t going to work no matter how badly i wanted to see that cottage in person. rushing is not my area of expertise.
my dream cottage in the fog & pines will have to wait.
by the way, i don’t actually spend hours searching for future retirement homes. i signed up to get redfin’s daily listings. it’s my favorite email to open. they send me listings from locations their clever intuitive robots notice i’ve visited before. there are plenty of duds, but every once in awhile a gem of a place appears in the listings and i get the exact same feeling i had when i set eyes on the moss cottage listing for the first time. ding ding ding!
i hadn’t thought of cambria before, but now that it’s on my radar i’ll have to go investigate.
in other news, a squirrel has been rooting around in my succulent pot looking for his lost nut. well, we can’t have that can we?
i tucked everything back into place…including a tiny note telling him where to get off.
the pot on the other side is too tightly packed to be a very good nut vault.
the rain is drenching my garden and pots with precious water. it’s late in the season for this kind of rainfall, but none of us here in LA are complaining.
it had been many years since i drove north out of the foothills for a spin through the san gabriel mountains. it’s good to se the chaparral turning green on the slopes and canyons.
i returned to huntington gardens early this morn. i never ever get tired of walking the paths of this old 120 acre estate.
communing with all the blooming plants.
the pincushion flower is especially arresting don’t you think?
i managed to find some blossoms in all the stages of development.
insert sentiments of a mary oliver poem here.
one day in the not too distant future when i set sail for my seaside hideaway slash forever home i will return here every other month or so to visit these beloved trails.
had i rushed off to cambria i would be slogging back home right now.
i wouldn’t have had time to scour my garden for some fine ordinary plant specimen to paint into my tiny sketchbook.
besides, in less than a week i’ll be roadtripping up to extreme northern california. i am so ready for a week of quiet respite.
i’ll pick up dottie in oakland then we’ll point our compass north. all the way up to the victorian village of ferndale, way up in humboldt county on the redwood coast. each of us is eager to escape work for a week and spend time exploring the beaches and tall trees. i’m especially excited because i’ve never driven north of mendocino county. i’m eager to get an impression of the area and see whether or not i should add it to my growing list of future retirement locations.
i’m nearly finished with winter solstice and … just in time for my trip, audible released rosamunde pilcher’s coming home!
i hope you crazy kids are up to something GOOD. keep me posted on your adventures big and small.
i’ll send you a postcard or 2 from the northcoast. xo