Growing up Sophie, Julie and I were often thought to be triplets. Maybe we looked alike, but it was probably because we did everything together. From endless sleepovers to all the sports, we were inseparable. I hadn’t seen Sophie in about a year and a half and even then it was only for a few hours so this trip was much needed.
Julie and I arrived in San Francisco around 10:30 am on Friday. Sophie, Walker, and Kaia (their dog) picked us up and we began on our itinerary (I seriously loved that their was an itinerary). First up was a driving tour of the city outlining some of the major tourist spots before we began our trek out to Carmel. We spent the car ride sleeping (Julie) and catching up on life.
Once in Carmel we went to a cantina for dinner since this girl was starving. I was trying to adapt to local time by eating at “normal” times and not sleeping until “bedtime.” The night consisted of many margaritas, some skinny and some not, chips, some covered in cheese and some not, and a quesadilla. Julie and Walker chatted away while Sophie and I snuggled up and talked in our booth. She called me out on always being so hard on myself, but said it in the nicest way possible. It broke my heart a little that someone who cares about me that much lives so far away, but ultimately I feel just lucky to have her in my life. It’s really eye-opening when someone says something that you’ve always felt, but never truly acknowledged.
The next morning this girl was feeling a little sick from exhaustion, dehydration, and the margaritas combined. While Julie and Walker went running (I love that Walker is comfortable spending time alone with us), Sophie and I did a BeachBody workout outside. It was sunny and in the 40s so we got outside ASAP. I only survived 15 minutes before the nausea kicked in, but a homemade breakfast and latte helped settle my stomach.
Our adventure that day started with a hike along the coastline. It rained while hiking, but it was a light rain that wasn’t too cold so I didn’t mind at all. The views were spectacular and there were even some seals. Unfortunately I am near sighted and don’t have prescription sunglasses so I couldn’t see them…time to upgrade.
After showering we walked along the beach into town. Kaia went CRAZY on the beach with the other dogs and I was absolutely mesmerized by the waves. They were huge and the white caps were beautiful against the teal ocean. Walker said the waves die down in the summer, but I could sit there and watch/listen to them all day long. The road along the beach is also splattered with unreal houses, all of which are so unique and even more expensive than the last. I felt so lucky to even walk on that street and no, I didn’t see any celebrities.
Carmel is a little gem. We wandered through town looking at the shops and various restaurants before stopping for some ramen and a wine tasting. While sipping on some vino Julie, Sophie and Walker reminisced about their trip to Napa and we began planning my personal trip to Napa with them. Walker has a superb taste for wine so I will go wherever he goes.
Dinner was at a new brewery in town called Yeast of Eden. We hung out at the bar trying some beers before being seated. We were hangry (well, Walker and I were) by the time we got to the table so we had our orders ready to go. The tacos were amazing and the cauliflower entree was decent, but a bit spicy. While we took a lot of time deciding on a place for dinner, I ultimately didn’t care about the spot because it for once wasn’t about the food, but rather the people. Post dinner we snuggled up with blankets, wine, and a movie, First Man. I put myself to bed mid movie because I was exhausted.
Sunday morning began with a run with Julie. She is the only person who can convince me to go for a run. I love the alone time with her despite my ongoing complaining. It’s on our runs where we have our most heartfelt conversations it seems. Also, I knew that this would be my last moment to view that view.
We made it four miles before packing up and heading to a French bakery for breakfast to fuel our drive down Big Sur. All the bridges along here were built in the 1930s after the depression and are still sturdy and gorgeous. One of the things I love most about trips is learning the history and boy did Sophie and Walker deliver.
To break up our drive back to San Francisco we stopped at In-N-Out Burger where Walker ordered the specials for us newbies. Double Double Animal Style for me with a few fries. I don’t eat fast food burgers often, but man that was worth it.
Back in San Francisco we continued our tour on foot through Chinatown and onto El Barcadero. The market in the old ferry building is maybe my favorite place ever. I bought a cookbook at a cute little shop and then some chocolate and a magnet at a local food store (I am not telling you how much money I spent on chocolate). I wanted to buy so many things but I should start saving money and I only had so much space in my carry-on bags.
Every photogenic opportunity we had we took advantage of. Thanks to our personal photographer, Walker Harden.
Back at their apartment, we got to cooking and watching the Grammy’s AT 5 PM!! I need to live on the West Coast just so I can finish awards shows and big sporting events (like the Super Bowl). Walker spoiled us with some delicious wine yet again. He cooked chicken piccata while I cooked risotto in their cozy kitchen. The risotto came out to be like four pounds so they’re probably still eating it as they read this a week later. We snuggled on the couch for the rest of the evening and chatted about old friends/acquaintences and what they’re up to as well as our own personal aspirations and goals in life. Who else but your best friend do you get into the deep stuff with?
Before the plane ride on Monday we got in a few more breathtaking views a la Walker. By this time Julie and I were exhausted and anxious (okay, only me) so we weren’t the most talkative. So a big thank you to Walker for putting up with us. And a big thank you to Sophia for having us over to her office for lunch. So inspired to see how far she and Walker have gone with their careers.
All in all, this was a perfect trip. I originally thought it would be too short, but when visiting friends who have separate lives and work to do, it makes sense to do a long weekend. Sophie and Walker were extremely generous in showing us their life in the city, but also treating us to a special trip to Carmel, that I probably would not have been able to experience without them. We’ve grown up a lot and we’ve grown apart physically, but we’ve definitely grown closer mentally and I never would have thought that to be possible. I love Sophia, my triplet, and I also love her life with Walker and Kaia in San Francisco. I’m going to be visiting again you two, thank you for everything. And a big thank you to Julie for traveling with me even though I’m not the best flyer.