My Lifestyle

The Final Day of My 35th Year

Today was such a wonderful day, I wanted it to have a blog post all of its own.

It has been unseasonably warm here and I decided I should take a coastal walk.  I usually neglect these trails because they are flat and I seek the challenge of incline hikes.  My back has been a little sore lately though, so I’ve been gentle and there’s no better time for a flat walk than when healing.

Trailhead
Trailhead

Cowell-Purisima trail is usually only open on weekends, but had extended weekday open hours for the holiday season.  I decided to take advantage of that and headed to Half Moon Bay to see the Pacific Ocean.  I stopped and got a sandwich with avocado sprouts and other veggies on tasty seeded bread to eat along the way.

Whale Gate
Whale Gate

The trail runs between farmland and the ocean bluffs.  Beyond this really cool gate, there were fields of artichokes!  My favorite vegetable growing on a farm overlooking the Pacific Ocean?  I’d like to live there now please.

educational signs abound
educational signs abound
a field of artichokes!
a field of artichokes!

I thought it was pretty cool that if I looked east, toward Redwood City where I live, I could see the hilltops of Purisima Creek Open Space Preserve, one of my favorite hiking spots that overlooks Half Moon Bay.  I love that- when two hiking spots are within line of sight of each other from miles away.  This is probably something that happens only rarely most places, but with the abundance of hiking trails in the SF Bay area, it happens somewhat regularly here.

Purisima Creek OSP
Purisima Creek OSP

But of course the main show was the coastline.  It still feels exotic to me, this “other” ocean, growing up thinking of the Atlantic as The Ocean.  It still seems odd and in-congruent that the sun sets over the blue horizon, not rises.  For that reason, I really enjoy looking at it.  And the sound.  Is there anything as relaxing as the sound of the ocean?

cowell beach
Cowell beach
looking north
looking south
looking south
looking north
a gaggle of various seabirds
a gaggle of various seabirds

All this was lovely, of course, but the real treat for me was seeing the harbor seals.  I had never seen them before and I was so enamored of them swimming and bathing in the sun.  I wish my iPhone camera could have adequately captured what my eyes could see, but alas.  Still, as I sat on this outcropping after 5 miles of walking, eating my sandwich and watching the seals, I couldn’t think of any better place to be or thing to be doing.

harbor seals sunbathing
harbor seals sunbathing

I was a happy camper when I got back to my car and then it got even better.  I put the top down because it was so incredibly nice outside (oh my snowbound friends, I am so sorrynotsorry) and on the way out of town I pulled over at a farmstand to see what kind of veggies they had.

farm-stand
pull up to the farm-stand with my ceiling missing

And I ended up being able to buy some baby artichokes from the very farm I had been walking by all afternoon, as well as some brussel sprouts, lemons, and tomatoes.

I know where this food came from.
I know where this food came from.

Tomorrow is my 36th birthday, but the universe gave me my gift today.  No matter what tomorrow is like, I am grateful.

12 thoughts on “The Final Day of My 35th Year

  1. I love this post so much! I’ve been to Half Moon Bay once before and it was so lovely it was hard to leave. Happy Birthday Kate (from freezing, snowy Boston, LOL!) – Thanks for being such an inspiration!

  2. Oh my, this post made me miss CA. I used to live about 1.5 hour away, but I never walked that trail. I’ve been itching to vacation back there. And your right, the pacific and atlantic coast are nothing alike. The harbor seals? The picture really doesn’t show how spectacularly large they are. 🙂

  3. Happy Birthday, know I’m late but hope you don’t mind. Love your blogs and wish I were able to see the coast!

  4. What a pretty scene while out for a walk. Looks very relaxing. Artichokes are a very alien looking veg to me and I have no clue how to prepare or cook them. Maybe you could do a post on how to prepare baby and big ones and maybe a couple of recipes?

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