Sunday, June 14, 2015

Finally time to reflect...

These few days away meant a lot to me.  I got to spend time with my best pal, Lucy Grace.   I got to relax poolside and even got in time for some writing.  It was nice not having an agenda or having to run from one place to another, but the time off just wasn't enough.

Ojai is a special place for me.    We took my Mom here for a few days the first time she ever came to visit me in LA.   She loved the place and we had such a great time.  It was great to come back to a place where I have such fond memories of my Mom and I thought of her often.   I know she was here with me, enjoying the peace and calm that is Ojai.  From the early morning walks around the grounds to the time spent at the spa, I could feel her presence.   It really made it hard to leave.   I can't wait to go back again.  Maybe a long weekend in the fall Mom? 

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Finding some peace, still seeking the calm...

I have several friends who say it always takes them 3 or 4 days to unwind when they go on vacation.  I’ve never been one of those people.   I’m usually in vacation mode, as soon as I’m at the gate at the airport.  However, for some reason on this trip, I have not been able to get in vacation mode and let go.  As much as I was counting down the days, I still haven’t been able to completely relax.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m enjoying my time here but I arrived in Ojai on Sunday and it’s already Wednesday.   I can’t believe how fast time has gone by.  I need a few more days. 

While I’ve had no real agenda and have not been running at a hectic pace, my days still feel a little too structured.   I enjoy being able to take a workout class in the middle of the day, or even at 10am but somehow it makes me feel scheduled.   My mind is not truly at rest, I still don't feel the sense of calm I was so desperately seeking.

Maybe I should spend the day in bed tomorrow or maybe I should have planned for 2 weeks!

Sunday, June 7, 2015

When Does the Relaxation Actually Begin?

The Traveling Hillbilly needed a little quiet time to relax and recharge.  The plan was to head to Ojai for several days with no agenda, no to do list!   I couldn't wait to get on the road first thing Saturday get to Ojai and spend the next several days doing nothing, but hiking, lounging by the pool, taking the dog for some long walks.   My planned relaxation would be a little longer coming.  First, the hotel was sold out on Saturday.  Not to be deterred, I booked a room at the Four Seasons Westlake Village.  I made plans to meet some friends for dinner in the area and thought this will be a great start to my time off.   Unfortunately this Four Seasons isn't truly pet friendly.  I'd say it's more like pet tolerant.  While small pets are allowed in the hotel, you must remain in the room with them at all times.  So my dinner plans for that Saturday night had to be adjusted.   After brunch on Sunday morning, it was time to get on the road.   I wanted to get to Ojai in time to take advantage of one the great benefits of booking with Am Ex, NOON check in.

I was disappointed to hear the room they had ready for us was not exactly a "pet friendly" room.  It was on the 2nd floor and not near any grassy areas to walk the dog. I asked if there was another room available that might be more appropriate for a dog.  While there was another option, it wasn't ready yet.  I decided to wait for the room and headed to the store to pick up some supplies and walked my hound around the little downtown area for bit. After almost two hours, I decided to head back to the hotel assuming the room had to be ready by now.  It wasn't and now I had food in the car and a dog ready to pass out from the heat.  Lucy Grace, just plopped down on the lobby floor and refused to take another step.  I asked if the front desk if they could just put me in any room at this point, downgrade my room, whatever it took to get me in a room, so I could get my dog some water and let  both of us just relax.  After all that was the point of this whole trip and I had been waiting counting down the hours to my trip since late Friday.

Finally almost 36 hours after my journey of rest and relaxation was to begin, it started!  I had the chance to settle in and relax.   While things didn't exactly start out as planned, I did get to have dinner with some dear friends and brunch with another one before evening arriving in Ojai. 

Now that I'm finally settled, I hope the days ahead bring me the calm and peace I'm a seeking.