In an ongoing series, Keren Weinstein, our Guest Life-Balance Editor, took a much needed trip. More than the need to go on vacation to a new locale, she wanted to find her own sense of balance and thus Project Detox began. Last week, we jumped on a horse and went happy trailing. Today, Keren shows us that a little road trip is all we need to continue to reconnect.
We all live in different locales. Different speeds. We do different things.
Have a different purpose.
But no matter what kind of life we live, it needs to be balanced.
The ‘balancing cocktail’ required to reach that equilibrium is different for each of us.
For some, a trip to a big city like NY or Tokyo may be what they need.
For this full time working urban mom, the prescription for ‘road to equilibrium’ sounds more like….
Take an all American road trip through California Coast with a great friend and call me in the morning!
A bit of a travel snob, I don’t normally embark on road trips as my choice of vacation. Usually, I fly (direct) to my destination and have researched and received recommendations on what to do, see, experience, buy, eat, sleep before I even step foot on the plane. I don’t miss a beat. Or do I?
There is something about road trips that gives you a sense of care-free exploration. Of appreciating the journey not just the destination. Of really traveling.
I can recall that feeling when I road tripped through the West Coast with my best friend and her family as a teen.
It was now time to reignite that engine.
I have been blessed with meeting and having so many amazing people in my life.
And thanks to eM, FB, t, SMS, MMS, BB, LinkedIn, etc. I get to keep in touch in lieu of my busy lifestyle. But, a very important part of ‘the balanced life’ (and remaining true to myself), is spending quality in-person time with my family & friends.
The next few days, was going to be about the benefits of friendship. And roadship.
We knew overall where we were heading but drove where the wind took us.
Have a plan and go with the flow.
A motto I swear by.
If you want to get somewhere in life (or in a given day) you need to have a plan. An intention.
But, it’s the plans that move with the current that survive and thrive daily tides and storms.
You need to Surf. Cruise. And breathe through life’s changes all while remembering to still have fun. Life is colorful. Not just black and white lists of to do’s.
The coastal fresh air. The amazing landscapes. The speed. The maps. The music. The picture pull-overs. The lavender farm pit stops. The conversation. The shared quiet. The freedom. The nostalgia.
Who knew I would actually [still] be driving on a Journey through Myself?!
At one point, driving on the road with great music along the stunning backdrop of hilly landscape, it felt like we were in one of those car commercials. Turns out. ‘We were’.
We have reached San Luis Obispo County which is known to be the location for filming many of our national car commercials.
Considered one of the best stops for ‘Pure California’ between San Francisco and L.A., San Louis Obispo (SLO) was a perfect way to stray off course. And with the vineyards a few miles away the weather was grape perfect. The locals refer to it as SLO (to imply the ‘slow alternative to the hectic life’). It's a ‘natural escape where slowing down to enjoy the good life is the essence’. One might say I didn't stray off course, I was finally on the right course.
Surrounded by rolling hills as if suspended in the middle of nowhere was the historic mission town of SLO. A small almost European village-like town. Quaint. Vibrant and colorful. Relaxed and laid back. Energized. Playful. Almost caracature’ish. Definitely surreal. Happy.
This travel pit stop, I did not research in advance. I was going to explore on my own. Enjoy in a different way. Raw.
I walked the pristine streets and found myself in a shopping heaven. Adorable high-end boutiques and antique shops that were charming and unpretentious. (I later found out Lucky Magazine calls SLO it “Sprinkled with charmingly unpretentious shops”. Right on Lucky! )
Excellent places to dine, go wine tasting, grab cocktails, coffee or frozen yogurt. Many of them boasting local wine, cheese, produce, olive oil, fish. It was fresh and colorful and healthy and delish. It is no wonder the first Jamba Juice location began in SLO. They aren’t slow at all in knowing what is good for you.
After stumbling upon the colorful, quirky & famed Bubble Gum Alley and taking a trip back in time at Powell’s Sweet Shop, I felt like a kid seeing Willy Wonka ’s factory for the first time. The vintage candy. The sweet smell. The colors. The excitement. “What we really offer are memories. We want to walk our customers down memory lane and remind them of good things and good times.” Mr. Powell wanted me to find that core childlike happiness.
A killer song by The Police lead this 80’s child into a small café. In the back, I discovered a beautiful outdoor garden. Full of color. Crisp. Picture perfect.
I sat sipping my tea and with a journal in hand.
I was in the moment living the SLO life. I was in a happy place.
Now this is road trippin.
Start your engines.
Keren Weinstein is a seasoned professional in Fashion & Beauty with over 12 years in Integrated Marketing, Advertising and Celebrity Fashion Styling