“The road of life twists and turns and no two directions are ever the same. Yet our lessons come from the journey, not the destination.” Don Williams, Jr.
A little over a year ago, I had shared a post ( Reflections: Memories Of Big Sur…) on a memorable road trip I took to Big Sur, California with my then husband to be. What made that a particularly poignant memory was the fact that it was part of a surprise marriage proposal, and my first time in California. We flew in from New York, spent time with old friends in San Francisco and Oakland, and then headed out for our destination points. Aside from our long and languid drive up the Big Sur coastline, we stopped and spent time by the ocean, at a wonderful restaurant – Nepenthe, and a few nights at The Esalen Institute. For this challenge, I mapped out the area we covered specific to our Big Sur trip, and excluded the fact that our journey, our road-trip, began in San Francisco… But I suspect you might have imagined that; we all must begin somewhere.
“The map is not the territory.” Alfred Korzybski
As we prepared for our trip, we asked friends for ideas and they suggested a meal at the famous Nepenthe Restaurant; a former cabin lodge set high on a hill overlooking the Big Sur coastline and the Pacific ocean. The beauty of the ocean from our high point was quite striking and it made it difficult to focus on the meal we had. I know we had seafood, salad, and probably dessert, but my heart was drawn to the ocean and that mesmerizing slice of the coastline. We spent a few nights at the Esalen Institute which was known as the Big Sur Hot Springs for several months before it became the Esalen Institute. Our quarters were elegant yet simple. The food was bountiful; an organic, vegetarian feast. What I loved about our stay at Esalen was the chance to enjoy the hot spring tubs perched on the side of the mountain, overlooking the ocean below. It was a fantastic experience… The ocean views were amazing from our outdoor dip in the hot tub. I could feel the breeze from the ocean and the occasional spray of cool ocean water; quite surreal. More below.