Sunday, November 12, 2023

California Dreamin'


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Calgary's first snowfall of the season has got me dreaming about my holiday in California this September. The main purpose for the trip was to attend Bouchercon World Mystery Convention in San Diego. My husband Will (an avid mystery reader) and I spent four interesting days attending panels and events like Speed Dating for Writers and Readers and the New Author Breakfast. Both were more fun than I'd expected and popular enough to fill the large rooms by 7:00 am. When we weren't occupied with the convention, we enjoyed the views from our hotel in the San Diego Marina. 

At night we watched airplanes fly over the farther buildings to land at the airport 

After the convention, we stayed an extra day in San Diego to see a little more of the city. We walked along the boardwalk and took the short ferry ride to Coronado Island, an upscale vacation beach community. The highlight was a concert in the park featuring a great cover band. Hundreds of people gathered. Since we didn't have chairs, we stood at the front and danced to songs like "Witchy Woman" and "One of These Nights" made famous by the Eagles.     

Marina boardwalk "Kissing Statue" designed from the iconic Life Magazine 1945 photograph

From San Diego, we drove to Julian, a "hippie" town located in the apple-growing hills east of the city. In addition to exploring the quirky, historic former gold mining town, we gorged on apple pie - arguably the best I've ever had. A half dozen bakeries produce pies for tourists, many of them day-trippers from San Diego. 

Picnic lunch near Julian


Julian main street

       We included a drive to the Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, but it was way too hot for a long hike. 

We wrapped up our California holiday with four nights in Oceanside for beach time, a coastal hike, and watching surfers. On the way we stopped at a winery with sweeping views. 

    Sunshine, warmth, ocean, books, wine, apple pie -- pretty much a perfect trip!  



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