After a year and a half in the Bay Area and nearly as long in and out of Davis, I've been to Sonoma a handful of times, however my visits always revolved around wine. Don't get me wrong - I enjoy a good winery marathon - but the focus on wine has limited my experiences when it comes to all the other things Sonoma County has to offer.
After a spectacularly embarrassing snowboarding accident (and resulting titanium hardware), I'd been recovering for nearly a month when friends suggested a day trip to Sonoma to get me out of the house. As much as I've been enjoying mixing painkillers with alcohol, we decided to steer clear of wine country, in favor of adventures along the Bohemian Highway and out to the coast.
Getting outside - and to the ocean no less - was just what the doctor ordered. I have yet to get sick of California's coastal views - and I don't know that I ever will. We headed out to Bodega Bay, and our group of four checked out the view from above first (via a pull-off on Highway 1), then headed down to the water through a perfect stairway path of blooming ice plants.
There were tiny sea creatures scattered at the water's edge, beautiful homes on the overlooking cliffs, and a great stretch of nearly deserted beach to walk (and contemplate life, love, and more importantly, the outcome of the Michigan State Elite 8 basketball game that was simultaneously taking place). But perhaps most importantly, it was a chance for me to get back out into the great outdoors.
For someone who has always prided herself on decent athletic ability and a self-perceived tolerance for pain, crumpling into a depressed, sobbing blob of a human following wrist surgery was a shock to my system, and to my sense of self. Having never really hurt myself before, broken bones and sports injuries never seemed like a huge deal - add in the parade of medical dramas on TV, and surgery seemed pretty ordinary, even commonplace. Needless to say, I didn't expect to be in pain for as long or as intensely as I was. This trip to the coast - despite being just one day of a wonderful weekend - was the turning point in my recovery, at least mentally.
The moral of the story, I suppose, is that whether you've broken your body snowboarding and have been trapped in your house (slowly but surely losing all touch with reality) or simply need to hit the reset button in your life - a single day in the outdoors can really do the trick.