Tuesday, October 27, 2009


The president of Cal. State Fullerton required all faculty and staff to take three furlough days last week. We took advantage of this unpaid time off to drive up the coast to a little town called Carmel. You might know it as the town of which Clint Eastwood was once the mayor. But that is not what attracted us. No offense, Mr. Eastwood. The Dog Lover's Companion to California seemed to suggest that Carmel was the dog friendliest town in California, and possibly the world. Whereas we usually leave our lovely pooch-a-roos at their favorite boarding place when we vacate, this time we decided to emphasize the "fur" in furloughcation and bring them along.

Based on the recommendation in The Dog Lover's Companion to California, we stayed at the Lamplighter Inn. Specifically, we stayed in the Concourse Suite, which had a fully fenced in backyard just for us.

Our bed and breakfast was just a couple of short downhill blocks from the Carmel City Beach, which allows dogs to run without leashes. They LOVED it! They made lots of dog friends and a few people friends. They tried to adopt a 7 month old yellow lab, but David convinced them two is company and three is a crowd. Apparently there was a big storm recently so there was a lot of seaweed on the beach and big waves. Augie and Izzy were highly interested in the seaweed. Not remotely interested in getting their paws wet. But there were lots of surfers to watch.

We took a day trip up to Monterey to check out the sea lions and got the added bonus of harbor seals! The sea lions are at the end of the Coast Guard's wharf next to San Carlos Beach. There is a fence between the walkway and the jetty where the sea lions bask. But one sea lion was right up next to the fence, like he was the was the bouncer. Augie and Izzy were just inches from an actual sea lion!

We walked along the Monterey Bay Coastal Trail, which is a little bike/walking path behind the touristy shops of Cannery Row. On the recommendation of The Dog Lover's Companion to California we stopped for lunch at the Trailside Cafe, located, perhaps not shockingly, along the bike/walking trail that included "Dogs welcome" on their sign. David had a salad, I had a sandwich, and Augie and Izzy split a hamburger. They were in puppy heaven. The seals were actually in the next town over from Monterey, Pacific Grove, in the little bay next to Stanford's Hopkins Marine Station.

We also made a trip down the Pacific Coast Highway to Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park. Actually, this turned out to be the exact same park David and I camped in for a few days on our 1995 road trip. Augie and Izzy got to pee on giant redwoods! Very exciting. The park had recently been flooded in a big storm, so many of the paths weren't open, but the roads around the picnic areas and the campgrounds were open, so we had a good walk.

David particularly likes the following picture because it highlights not only the hugeness of the redwood, but also the fact that this was primarily a vacation for Augie and Izzy and not so much of a vacation for him.

David did have to do a lot of grading, but he got to do it in a cute little cafe (check out their logo with the sea otter) up the street from our B&B. He also took the brunt of the dogs when they were super pully on leashes. But then again, instead of walking the dogs around their usual haunts he got to walk them along the ocean and around the cutest little town ever. I think between their morning walks with David, their day hikes with both of us, and their evening walks downtown to get dinner (we did take out . . . Izzy is a bit whiny for sit down dining - I highly recommend the New England clam chowder and the prawns at A.W. Shucks and pretty much anything from Little Napoli), I think they probably walked almost ten miles every day. They are tuckered. And David and I are well exercised. I don't think I've walked that much . . . well, possibly ever.

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laughingmuse said...

Sounds like an excellent holiday. :)

Rebecca said...

Awesome pictures. The dogs look very happy!

Sarah said...

It was indeed an excellent holiday, especially for the very happy dogs.

The pictures were actually a bit of an issue. Some time after our first trip to the beach I accidentally pressed some buttons on the back of my camera which changed the settings to really high quality pictures in a really huge size. So I'm pretty sure you could blow up some of those pictures of the dogs at the B&B to poster size and lose no image quality. Unfortunately this meant that my memory card filled up immediately. So I had to delete a number of pictures on the fly and then had to be really selective in my shots. I probably should have deleted that last picture and tried again to get the dogs to look at me and to get David to smile. But David seems to love it as is.

Anonymous said...

A success for the pups!

Jennifer Ballengee said...

Hooray for Mr. Eastwood's town! I want to go there, and not just because he was mayor. Sounds like Otto would love it there. And Holden, too, since of course his first word is "dog." Well, actually, "duh!", which I interpret to mean dog. Even though he says it about, well, just about anything. But it has a different inflection when he is actually referring to a dog. Anyway, great pics and amusing narrative. The dogs look happy!