Cavallo Point

Cavallo PointThough only a few miles across the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco, the Lodge at the Golden Gate—aka Cavallo Point—is worlds away.

Lounging in the settees, wrapped in fuzzy warm blankets under heat lamps if necessary, on the patio outside Farley Bar and Murray Circle Restaurant, the world’s cares slip away as you sip some lovely Sancerre and munch on freshly popped truffle popcorn all in view of the Golden Gate. The burgers and seasonal cocktails are pretty great too. Your only regret will be that you didn’t book a room or a massage at the spa and now have to drive yourself back to reality.

The Best Gingerbread House in Town

Xmas LobbyIt’s getting to be around that time of year when the pastry chefs at the San Francisco Fairmont bake up hundreds of pounds of gingerbread for the two-story gingerbread house that each year accompanies the 23 foot Christmas tree that festoons the lobby.

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Bodie State Historic Park

ChurchTucked out of sight in the mountains east of Bridgeport, California, Bodie State Historic Park lies among nondescript and bleak surroundings. Apparently there was gold there, though it remains a mystery to me what anyone was doing there in the first place to have discovered gold that was underground. Rumors of gold can seem to make mankind to do all sorts of things that would otherwise be considered foolhardy. Maybe some gold had washed down Bodie Creek–a seasonal flow of which there was no trace of during our visit–so it made sense to search further upstream.

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Carrizo Plain National Monument

Coastal Tidytips
Coastal Tidytips

Trawling through the myriad websites listing the top destinations for wildflowers in California, you’ll eventually find mention of Carrizo Plain National Monument.

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The California Poppy

California Poppies
Cup of Gold

It should come as no surprise to anyone who has followed my photographic journey over the years that the California Poppy is my favorite flower. Also known as the golden poppy, cup of gold, and California sunlight, nothing else evokes for me the sun’s brightness and warmth and a childlike sense of joy than eschscholzia californica.

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