Thursday, March 12, 2015

A [Quick] Weekend in Paradise

Sand. Sunshine. Mojitos. Paradise.

This is how I spent my weekend...and it was absolutely perfect. Throughout the past few years, I have spent a lot of time in Los Angeles. Since starting the dietetic internship and moving to Portland I haven't visited in a while so, I was extremely excited to make my return to the land where summer never ends.

This trip made me realize something about myself - I don't like to stay in the same place for a long time. I like to travel and explore new places, things, and people. It's so fun to soak in other cultures, experiences, and cuisines. It keeps things interesting and exciting. It stimulates the mind! Even short trips like this get my mind refreshed and excited to keep traveling and even get back to the swing of things in internship land.

My first day in Southern California was spent in Catalina Island. As soon as you step off the ferry, you really feel like you're in another country. So quaint, so peaceful, so perfect.

I parked myself on the beach for the day and I am proud to say the mojitos started flowing at 10:30 am. A vacation isn't a vacation without a good mojito. After hours of pure bliss and sunbathing, the beau and I rented a kayak and paddled our way around the island. Sunshine and warm weather is certainly a huge motivator for me to be active. Incredible views like these don't hurt either (look for yourself ---->).

After working up an appetite, we splurged on a fancy Italian dinner which was heaven on a plate. We started off with some fried calamari followed by linguini and clams + chicken parmesan. We continued to walk around town stopping in cute little boutiques until it was time to take the last possible ferry back to LA.

The next (and sadly final day) was spent on Santa Monica beach. I made it my job to get as much vitamin D as possible... and a tan. Santa Monica promenade is possibly one of the most lively places I've ever seen. Every few steps, you find yourself stopping to witness the talented musicians and street performers.

Later that night, I met up with some old friends at Mike & Anne's, a great restaurant in South Pasadena with outdoor seating in a courtyard trimmed with white lights. We shared a bunch of appetizers including a pomegranate salad, brussels sprouts, roasted cauliflower, and olives. Our waitress joked at our dietitian-like dinner choices. It's funny when you haven't seen someone in almost a year and yet it feels like no time has passed at all. This night was filled with a lot of laughs and later some fro yo.

I couldn't have had a better time or have been surrounded by better people. The message of this story is to stay curious, see new places, and live a little. Sometimes putting yourself out there and breathing in the fresh air is just as nourishing for the mind and body as feeding it well.

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