San Diego is beautiful, and if I stay in California it’s probably where I would raise my family. It was one of the places I considered moving, and there is so much more to San Diego than all those reviews I read on the internet when I was considering moving there, calling it provincial.
We arrived in San Diego late Thursday night to be greeted by our sweet and beautiful friend Audrey. Audrey is a friend from college whose husband is a marine, hence she’s in San Diego. Audrey is a breath of fresh air. Her countenance is so genuinely sweet, she is the kind of person who softens your heart and makes you want to use gentle words just by being around her. She is a talented decorator, furniture maker, and hostess. She literally handmade her pillows, and I asked her where she bought them because I thought they were so cute. Mary and I felt so at home in Audrey’s apartment and so comfortable because Audrey is just good.
At this point mentally, I still felt like I was on vacation. I was playing with my friends, visiting. Surrounded by familiarity and unfamiliarity at the same time. Right at the point of being exhilarated by being somewhere new, without even a hint of fear or awareness that after that weekend I was on my own. I was so comforted by the fact that Audrey, who loves hunting, hosting, hospitality, Jesus, and is rooted in southern values, had a normal, enjoyable life in California. I was going to be just fine.
San Diego is one of the most beautiful places that I imagine you could live in California. There are countless scenic views, greenery everywhere, and perfect weather. We hiked Torrey Pines, a state reserve in San Diego.
We made my first beach trip of 2015, with every ounce of gratitude and bliss that comes with that first time you get to lay in the sun in a new year and feel heat again. We visited the beautiful Carlsbad Flower fields, Mary’s natural habitat.
We picked up an ice cream sandwich from Baked Bear, that I would actually drive down to San Diego just to get every weekend. My peanut butter ice cream was stuffed between a chocolate chip and pretzel cookie, and a brownie. I ate every bite.
Downtown San Diego is full of cute shops, great places to eat, specialty product shops, and of course, the San Diego farmers market. At the farmer’s market our first stop was a crepe station with really authentic crepes – made by a beautiful french man and everything.
We talked with/purchased from the owner of Holistic Science, my new favorite brand for skin and hair products. These products are made with all natural and organic ingredients, and i’ve since become addicted and basically traded out everything I’m using for her products (separate post on that later).
We stopped in a charming little cheese shop, to make friends with a lady inside who was selling Honey. Not exaggerating, this is the best honey I’ve ever had in my life. I can eat it plain. There were many different flavors, but I went with the Floral, Wildflower one, while Mary and Audrey went with a more citrus flavored honey.
We hiked, we ate, we laughed, we laid, we talked; we just enjoyed catching up on all the things you have to tell someone that you haven’t seen in a long time. We enjoyed catching up on life, and dreaming about the future. Audrey is moving to Beaufort, South Carolina, Mary is moving everywhere, and I was moving to California. We are all in this big moment of transition, and thankfully we were able to have a moment where everything aligned and slowed down. In the pivoting of our transitioning worlds everything aligned for us 3 to be in the same place at the same time; to look back at the old, and bravely walk forward into the new. Walking forward into something unknown is so much easier when you are aware that other people are doing it too. They will feel the same feelings. They can relate.
A weekend like we had allows you to remember that as much as things change, things don’t change that much. The people you love and the reasons you love them stay the same. Mary will always laugh at my jokes that no one else thinks are funny, will never get tired of Johnny Swim, will always be passionate, free, and wild, and will break dance on mountain tops (intentionally or not). Audrey will be afraid to share forks, kind and endearing, always a breath of fresh air, nearly flawless in everything she does. They are far away, but when you see them again it will feel like no time has been lost. You’ll understand each other in the same way. You’ll have the same affection toward them that you’ve had for years. Distance is temporary, and indefinite. It’s not a fixed thing. It’s not something you can’t change. You can hop on a plane, or in a car, or get on a phone, and defeat the distance any time you want.
I never want to stop loving the people that I love now – if anything, moving has made me want to love my friends more extravagantly than I ever have before. Moving has made me more thankful for the the people I love and done nothing but magnify how blessed I am by them in the way they love me back.
These friendships, they aren’t uncertain and moving; these friendships that are truly rooted in love and not some other common ground, these love rooted friendships are as solid as the ground we put our feet on everyday. They are unwavering. No matter where in the world we drift, we can always come back together and things will feel the same.