Often for our wedding anniversary we spend a few days in Carmel, one of the most appealing spots in California. This year we stayed at the Adobe Inn, where we have stayed many times before. It is right in the middle of the village, easy walking distance to the beach, shops, and restaurants, but it has become a bit worn looking over the years. When we first started visiting Carmel many years ago, it was a real American village with lots of small independent shops that carried the necessities of daily life. We especially enjoyed some of the bookstores that were located there. Today there are too many art galleries and jewelry stores, but there are enough unusual stores such as, Carmel Bay Company, left to make it an interesting place, and the natural beauty of the area, plus the outstanding restaurants, keeps us coming back.
Of course, now our lives tend to center on our cycling excursions. We spent one day riding from the inn to Carmel Valley with stops at Carmel Barnyard and Carmel Crossroads. Although we prefer trips that are uphill on the outbound trip and downhill on the inbound one, this one is the opposite, but it is doable even for old codgers like us. We did this trip on a lovely spring day where the landscape was enhanced by delicate greenery and spring flowers sprouting all around. We ate lunch in Carmel Crossroads at Bistro 211, a colorful small restaurant with friendly service and thoughtfully planned offerings. The bookstore in the crossings complex is an especially fine one, stocked by someone who looks beyond currently popular books to books really worth reading. Check out our ride on YouTube.