Sunday, April 26, 2015

Whilst I was gone...

Yes, I have been seriously dink in posting here. Something I intend on remedying in the weeks to come. This past week David and I went camping out at Pfieffer Big Sur park to celebrate the 20th anniversary of our first date. We had been here before almost 18 years ago on our honeymoon. That trip we spent less time in camp and out in Monterey and Carmel doing the touristy things. This trip was a nice peaceful retreat for us both. David has been swamped at work and I have been stressed, depressed and pretty much a mess since the beginning of the year. I'll spare you the dramatic details, but I had enough and needed to get away.

It's amazing how clear your head is without the interference of everyday life (phones, texting, Facebook, TV, the Xbox, committee meetings, and the schedule of chores...).... Out at our campsite we had NO internet or data on our phones, hardly any cell phone service for that matter, so for the few texts that got to me, it was a pretty quiet week. Before we left I packed an 'art box' full of two mini canvas', my travel paint set, and other crafty things....aside from gesso'ing one of my canvas', nothing got painted. I truly believed I needed to mentally regroup before I could create anything. This trip allowed me to think about a lot of things, and one of them was the idea for starting an informational camping blog. On that note, Camping the Cole Way was born....I'm pretty excited about this. We spent a couple of days driving up and down the Big Sur Coast. Big Sur isn't just one place, it's a 90 mile stretch on the CA coast from the Monterey peninsula all the way down to where Hearst Castle is. Our first day out we went north and found a small artist's colony of shops and a great pub called the Maiden Publick House. All I can say is great food and great hospitality! We went back twice! I highly recommend the roast beef and brie sandwich and the macaroni and cheese poppers. On the down side the night David and I etched out to have our anniversary dinner well, I think this says it all.

On April 21st around 7PM  my husband and I stopped in to have dinner to celebrate our 20th anniversary. We didn't get through the door, evidently the waiter who spoke in a very Monty Python French (we apparently were those dirty English k-niggits) accent said we needed a reservation, and was rude beyond belief. Wish I had taken his picture because his expression said it all. Nowhere on your sign outside on HWY 1 does it say needing a reservation. As a restaurant on a prominent coastal highway the thought did not even enter our mind that we would need one. With a name like Roadhouse and the vintage truck on display out front we were expecting BBQ/Bar fare, peanut shells on the floor and a very laid back atmosphere. NOT this place. To the road worn and hungry traveler this restaurant is very deceiving in name and appearance. We will not return. EVER. I have no tolerance for rudeness or snobbery. You might want to change who you have welcoming people at the front, as well as your reservations policy. 

This was an e-mail I sent to the owners of the Roadhouse on HWY 1 in Big Sur. We ended up back at the Big Sur Lodge in the park we were camping at and had a great dinner with friendly service. As a Southern gal I know the value of hospitality and as a formal retail associate I know the value of customer service, it can make or break you. As a lifestyle blogger and writer I acknowledge the greats (Maiden Public House) and not so greats (The Roadhouse). As a reader, you let the chips fall where they may. I'm not one to complain, but I will correct you for your own good.

When people ask me what we did on this trip, I will answer, nothing. That's exactly what we wanted to do. Rest. David, being the fabulous cook that he is, made two loaves of quick bread and pull apart (Monkey Bread) bread in the Dutch oven using coals. Turned out fabulous. We mainly read, napped, took a few trips up and down the coast visiting the Hermitage Chapel, the Henry Miller Library, and a few vista points along with way to take pictures. 

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