Last week, we spent four days in a beachside town, on the northern outskirts of San Diego. The town was called Encinitas, and was just what we needed to recharge our batteries.
Time slowed right down. Although we were still on the northern side of the US-Mexican border, there was much that reminded me of our time in Mexico, eleven years ago. I loved the proliferation of taquerias that dotted the coastal highway near our hotel. Those places are the real deal, along with small Mexican-run grocery stores, where tortillas are sold by the weight. Best of all, no one was in a hurry. When we were in Mexico, we joked about how laid back everyone was. It didn't matter what the situation was, no one hurried, and we'd say "Mañana, mañana" (tomorrow, tomorrow). It felt similar in Encinitas.
Our accommodation - arranged at the last minute due to unforeseen events - was a basic roadside hotel. The kind where you park your car just outside your room. It was fun, though. I was worried about all four of us in one room (hadn't done that since first moving to LA when Miss Pie was eleven weeks old... at eighteen months, she's a different sleeper) but the girls were fantastic. Our room was pretty much just a place to sleep, anyway.
Day time was for hanging out at nearby Moonlight Beach:
Day time was also for visiting San Diego Zoo - somewhere I've wanted to go for many years. We ended up getting a years' membership, so that we have an excuse to head down south again. It was actually better value, and it meant we didn't stress about rushing around and trying to see everything on one day. Knowing we'd be back one weekend made it much more relaxing.
We had close friends also staying in Encinitas. They had organised a house swap from where they live in Oregon, so late afternoons and evenings were spent at the lovely house they were staying in. Our kids all played together like they'd only been apart a few weeks, and we got to eat (and drink) up a storm, heading back to our hotel each night at an ungodly hour.
It was perfect.
Now it's back to real life, and the ho-hum of domestics. Outside, it's hot, and without the cooling ocean breeze that we had in Encinitas. We didn't get to run off to Las Vegas, for reasons I won't bore with. Let's just say not all the necessary conditions were in place. I'm disappointed, but we had such a brilliant time last week that I'm (kind of) okay about it. We had a local date night, so it wasn't a sad ending.
I do want to close my eyes, though. Open them, and be back in our little Encinitas hotel room. Everything was simpler for a few days (well, except the part about trying to do everything around a toddler's need for a midday sleep).
Sun, warmth, fun, great company, tipsy late-night conversations, kids dancing... must do it again.
PS - How adorable is Miss Pie, and how spunky is the Faery? She got her first case of sunburn (oops) but she now has the most golden-coloured skin to die for.