Wednesday Wander – California Dreaming

It’s a short Wednesday Wander this week. The sickness bug has returned and taken over the entire household, all of us wandering around miserably, wishing it would go away. We live inland now, quite far from the ocean, and I do notice the difference in that things seem to linger, no fresh breezes or salt air sweeping through to clear away the sickness miasma.

And so my mind has wandered. To a place where the air is balmy, fresh with salt and Pacific breezes sweeping off a blue ocean. Where palm trees dance and seafood is served crisp and hot, fresh from the boats.

These shots were all taken the day we arrived in San Francisco just over two years ago, after a week spent in Vancouver and Seattle. We were about to start the next leg of our journey, heading down the California coast for my brother’s wedding.

We’d arrived, weary after a whirwind week, but excited to meet up with the rest of the family, who were flying in later that day. We checked into our hotel, then went to find food, a local restaurant offering excellent coconut prawns and a water view the perfect antidote to the bustle of airports and luggage and taxis, setting the scene for a wonderful week to come.

And it was my favourite time of day, as well. Sunset, the sky and sea reflections of each other, colours blending above and below. As we strolled back along the water to our hotel, I remember the feeling of warmth, within and without, and of happiness to be somewhere so wonderful with my favourite people in the world.

So, as I feel so rotten this week, I’ve decided to wander back there again. Thanks for coming on another Wednesday Wander with me – see you next time!


If you enjoyed this post and would like to read more, you can find me on Twitter @AuthorHelenJFacebook, Instagram and Pinterest. Plus my latest book release, A Thousand Rooms, is now available on Amazon. Visit my Amazon Author Page to see more.

Wednesday Wander – Powell St Cable Car, San Francisco

img_0315When we were visiting San Francisco just over a year ago, we took a ride on the famous Powell Street Cable Car.

img_0316The cable car operates between downtown San Francisco and the waterfront, and is one of the last hand-operated cable car systems in the world. Operators use a system of levers to drive the trams, and the brake blocks, which are made of Douglas Fir, have to be replaced every few days. Passengers (which included us), sit along seats on the outside, or just hang on to one of the poles. There are no seatbelts or barriers – you basically just have to hang on as you rattle through the streets, especially on the steep hills. It’s great fun.

img_0318And, when you reach the end, the bay and Golden Gate Bridge are there in front of you, all mountains and blue water. There is something about the Pacific West Coast of North America – it has a feel like nowhere else I’ve been in the world. The cities seem to perch precariously between the water and sky, as though nature has only been held back temporarily and could return at any time.

Thanks for coming on another Wednesday Wander with me – see you next week!


If you enjoyed this post and want to read more, you can find me on Twitter @AuthorHelenJ,  Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest. Plus my latest book release, A Thousand Rooms, is now available on Amazon.

Wednesday Wander – Throwback, Hollywood Style

This week, I’m wandering back in time as well as through space, to my first trip to California. It was 1985 – denim was faded, colours were bright, earrings were big and so was hair.

hollywood-bowlAnd here we are. My brother and I at the famed Hollywood Bowl, just sitting casually in front of the band shell. Well, at least I am. My brother looks, oddly enough, as though he’s playing air guitar. Odd, because he went on to become a professional musician, and now plays guitar all around the world. Not sure if he’s played at the Hollywood Bowl though – I’ll have to ask him.

Built in 1929, the Art Deco influence is obvious in the concentric arches of the band shell. The Bowl has hosted famous musicians almost beyond count – I remember my mum being very excited to be there. I believe The Beatles were mentioned several times. The large white spheres over the stage were designed by architect Frank Gehry, and were added during the 1980s to improve the sound system – apparently the deterioration of the acoustics were part of the reason this shell was demolished and replaced in 2004.

This trip was a fab trip – we drove from Los Angeles all the way along the coast road to San Francisco, a trip I repeated in part with my own family last year. The memories of the 1980’s trip are like a dream in some respects, all golden sun and green hills and blue ocean, like some fabled landscape in a story. I’m sure I’ll be back there again one day.

Thanks for coming on another Wednesday Wander with me – see you next time!