Funny story: A year ago we had no idea that we were going on our Big Adventure. We had no plans or serious interest in procuring an RV. One of our good friends invited our eclectic gaggle of friends to go camping in Big Sur in the following summer (this year), over 4th of July. You have to plan such things way out or there is no way to get reserved camping. So we jumped on it. We wanted to camp close to our friends, and the closest camping spot happened to be an RV spot, which we really didn't care about, but as it was the closest space we reserved it. Little did we know that one year later that little camp spot would end up being our Big Adventure launch pad.
Five days and seven families out playing in the woods. We broke out some chem-light glowsticks for the kids to throw around on the evening of the 4th. That's as close as we got to fireworks.
Big Sur is a remarkable stretch of coastline. If you've never been there, then think of any car commercial you've ever seen with a long helicopter shot of a shiny car zooming along serpentine cliffs above a rugged coastline, and then over a spectacular arched bridge. That's Big Sur. That and the giant Redwoods. Spectacular.
I've done a fair bit of camping in my lifetime, but this trip was unique for me. Oddly, it's the first time I've ever gone camping with more than a couple of good friends; the first time I've gone camping with multiple full-on families.
There is something really remarkable about spending more than a brief period of time in a place where phones, email, Facebook, etc. don't work.
And there is something remarkable about spending that kind of time with good friends.
For us Big Sur was a bittersweet unofficial point of debarkation for the Big Adventure - for reals this time! We had managed to put off many, but not all, tears as we rolled out of Livermore, headed for Monterey and Big Sur, telling ourselves and friends that it's not goodbye yet, we'll see you in Big Sur! But at the end of Big Sur, the inevitable goodbyes could no longer be avoided. Teary hugs, puffy eyes, and runny makeup.
Although, even that blow was softened a bit when we started booking camp spots for 2-6 July 2017!