For the first time since our honeymoon*, Gavin and I have gone on vacation without any in-laws. We headed down the coast to Monterey, for a few days of relaxing and using our neglected Monterey Bay Aquarium membership.
We left Sebastopol on Saturday, drove to Palo Alto, went out to dinner with Dana, and spent the night at my MIL’s. It was a very nice way to brake up the 4-hour drive from Sebastopol and Oliver likes visiting Grandma D and Winston.
Our vacation officially started on Sunday, when we left Palo Alto shortly before 10 am. We had a pleasant drive and reached our hotel shortly before noon. We couldn’t check in until “around 2 pm” so we headed for the Monterey Bay Aquarium, had lunch, and followed Oliver as he excitedly explored everything. It was a bit crowded, but he managed to find his way to the front of the crowds so he could press his face to the tank.
By 2:45 we were showing signs of mild exhaustion. We headed to the hotel where Gavin and I relaxed while O had a snack and check out every important feature the hotel room offered: drawers, light switches, and anything that could be climbed.
Around 4:30 we decided we should head back out to explore, and perhaps, find dinner. We ventured to Old Fisherman’s Wharf where we had a lovely walk and managed to avoid sampling the “famous!” clam chowder being offered by every seafood restaurant in a desperate attempt to bring in Sunday night patrons.
Instead, we turned away from the wharf and went in search of Rosine’s Restaurant. Comrade Squishy highly recommended it for the “family-friendly” atmosphere, “fantastic food” and “amazing desserts.” She was right on all counts. O assisted me with pasta and meatballs while Gavin enjoyed a breaded sicilian steak (or something like that).
Dessert was amazing piece of chocolate truffle cake, we got it to-go, had a long walk back to our car, stopped by at Trader Joes for ice cream (and other necessities) and then ate about 1/3 of it back at our hotel room. It was fantastic, which is why it is worthy of it’s own paragraph.
Although there were lots of great photo ops today, there are no photos to share. The camera (and video camera) were tucked away in the “tech stuff” bag in our car. They are now in my purse so we don’t miss these moments next time.
*The exception of our trip to Germany, where we spent one night in Munich (on a friend’s air mattress), a night on a train, and several nights in Berlin. We also spent a good deal of time with Oma. All our other vacations have been either to visit my parents/sister (flying to Texas), or with Gavin’s parents (driving with them to Oregon).