Letter To Myself: About Julian


Dear Crystal,

Thank you for finally giving in to your heart's desires. You've always wanted to go to the historic town Julian, after hearing about their apple pies and striking trails. You cried about stories in "A Woman Alone - Traveling Tales" - wishing you could be doing the same. 
Finally, you did. 

Volcan Mountain, Summit


You mustered guts and means to drive 120 miles in unfamiliar territory, forgetting about the "risks" of hiking alone with possible rattlesnakes and mountain lion sightings. You braved the steep inclines, the sketchy holes on the ground, the yellow spider on your thumb; the fact that you forgot your map - yet still, took on a different route down the trail. Your shoes broke while on top of the mountain. You scored hot blisters on each foot. You brushed all that off.  You simply savored two oranges and every gulp of that 150mL bottled water you had packed.

After the three hour and a half ordeal, you didn't relent. You combed every store on Julian's Main Street, limping from the blisters and a sore left hip flexor. In return, you discovered Cider Mill that turned out to be a fancy, dizzying relay of homemade goods (only cooks can relate). Since you are bringing home three whole pies, as a thoughtful gesture, you bought three different flavors from multiple pie shops. 
Julian Cider Mill

On the way to the car, your head spun. "I woke up at 3AM," you remembered as a nightmare disrupted the sleep you badly needed. Even the road to Julian - 79 Highway - is narrow and winding and totally out of your driving experience. The heat and the pain from hiking is finally kicking in. Is it time to go home now?
But there's still a Mining Tour.

Inside Eagle Pick Gold Mine, you absorbed every word from the tour guide. "How did miners work with candles in the dark? What about claustrophobia? It's creepy and cold here."
Julian’s Eagle Creek Mining Tour ($10)
Miners chipped away Earth's ore to harvest fine-as-flour specks of gold. No one should have the audacity to complain about GPS failing in the wilderness. That happened to you, so you calmly pulled over and checked the PDF map you prepared the night before. The last 70 miles is probably your longest stretch without getting lost. 
Lake Cuyamaca

Along the way, you passed by Cuyamaca Ranco State Park and Anza-Borrego Dessert, taking mental notes on directions. Earlier in the day, you caught a glimpse of El Capitan - how glorious the sun and fog intertwined behind the lake. Perhaps you might bring your sisters and mother there. If not, you'll go alone. 
Inspiration Point

Nothing wrong with that. You're simply honoring your present disposition. You're doing what you love - travel and exploration. In times when people forget what makes their soul dance, you're reveling in it. Thanks for taking time.