Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Weekend Round-Up: Highlanders

This was a non-stop fun weekend - the Burns supper was just one highlight in a weekend-long celebration of Shane and Scottish culture. Our house guests - Sarah, Chris, Jamie and Shane - arrived around 10:30 pm on Friday night. We unpacked, toasted the weekend with a bit of scotch and set-up four beds downstairs.

The next morning, everyone showered and dressed. We headed to Butler & Chef for a hearty brunch. Mmm...eggs benedict.

A brief break at home after brunch. Jackie arrived and we drove to the archery range in the park for our lesson. Eddie from the archery shop gave six of the group a lesson. Rob and I brought our own gear and shot alongside. It was a gorgeous, warm day in the park!

Back home at 4:00, I started to cook and prepare our feast. The gang headed off to Anchor & Hope for a cocktail while Jackie, Margaret and I finished preparations. I'll cover the dinner in a second post - it was pretty epic with 15 guests and a whole lot of ceremony.

Five beds made downstairs, a load of dishes in the wash and a load of napkins in the machine when we finally tucked in before 1. It was no surprise that we slept through the alarm the next morning. But still up and at 'em at 8:30. We loaded into two cars and drove to the Dipsea Cafe in Mill Valley for breakfast. From there, the eight of us drove onward through Stinson Beach to Point Reyes for hiking on the "moors" of Northern California.

Gorgeous day on the bluffs, nearly 70 degrees and completely still - so odd for a piece of land known to drive lighthouse keepers to suicide with harsh cold weather. We spotted a herd of elk and took the shuttle to the lighthouse at the very end of the peninsula. 803 steps to the bottom, where we spotted a couple whales passing by on their way from Alaska to Mexico.

We hiked from the lighthouse to the chimney rock point - it felt just exactly like Scotland with mossy, rocky, ferny terrain and tiny dairy farms along the way. It was dusk by the time we left the park. Dinner at the Farm House in Olema before driving back to the city through Fairfax. Our guests packed up, exchanged hugs and then drove home around 9:30.

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