Our weekends continue to be a whirlwind of adventure and this past one was no different. Mark’s obsession with owning a BMW M Coupe has been coming to a head over the past few months and when he found one in the Los Angeles area that he was interested in test driving we made a trip out of it. Now LA is about a five and a half hour drive so it was quite a trek but we knew that we wouldn’t always have a legitimate excuse to visit SoCal so we decided to spend a day in Santa Monica.

While we were inland {in Pasadena} checking out the car it was 90 degrees and sunny, perfect for an afternoon at the beach {or so we thought}. Once we made it to the coast the weather was totally different: overcast, foggy and a chilly 60 degrees. Luckily we’ve already learned our lesson about the Pacific ocean’s cooling effects on coastal cities so we came prepared with pants, shoes and jackets.

In Santa Monica we walked from our hotel down to the pier on Venice Beach which had a very similar feel to the Boardwalk up north in Santa Cruz except it was about half the size. I was a little disappointed that we didn’t see anyone rollerblading along the beach but then again it wasn’t really warm enough for that yet…maybe in July or August.

On Sunday we checked out of our hotel and headed towards Beverly Hills for some sight-seeing. We drove down Rodeo Drive and Sunset Boulevard, scoped out some huge houses and failed to find the Hollywood sign in the hills thanks to a false Google maps pin.

We had lunch in Malibu with one of Mark’s college buddies and then headed back up north on the PCH along the coast. The views were pretty amazing and just before we reached Santa Barbara we saw some whales! There were a ton of people parked on the side of the road looking out towards the ocean so we stopped too and watched the family of 3-4 whales just a few hundred yards off the coastline. It’s much more difficult to spot them in the video than it was in person; the first five seconds are the best.

Though things didn’t work out with the M Coupe, Mark still got to drive one for the first time and we can now say that we’ve been to LA. The California countryside views along our route home didn’t hurt either :)


One Response to “SoCal”

  1. Judy Putnam / nana Jude Says:

    How absolutely wonderful that you are taking advantage of being there and seeing some of the beautiful country out there. I remember well Grampa Rand’s and my time living in the SanFrancisco area and seeing the sites. So much of it is really breathtaking. Good for you for making a trip out of checking out the BMW. We are all so happy that you are having such an opportunity of work and play. Your pics are great and we love seeing them all. Thanks for putting us on this list. Take good care of each other and good for you for enjoying your time so fully! love you and sending you lots of OOOOOXXXXX Nana Jude

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