I have some news! A few months ago, Levi and I made a firm decision that we're going to move to the bay area, specifically Mill Valley. Since Levi's income depends on his clientele, and since his clientele isn't likely to follow him up north, this is a really big move that will require a lot of planning and a lot of saving. We'll have to move up there with enough money to live off of for at least six months, preferably a year. It will probably take us 3-5 years. I wish we could move tomorrow, but I'm really excited that we have this huge goal. It's really nice to have something to work toward. Also, I'm not ready to leave my family quite yet.
Anyway, I've been to Mill Valley before (and fell IN LOVE with it), but Levi's never been. Everything I told him about it, he loved, but he obviously needed to see it for himself. So on the second day we were in SF, we rented a zipcar, a little orange Mini Cooper to be exact, to drive over the bridge into Mill Valley! The zipcar membership is in my name, so I had to drive, which doesn't sound like a big deal, but here's the thing: I have three recurring nightmares. One of them features me driving up and down insanely steep hills... you know, like the kind you find in San Francisco. My stomach has always twisted into knots at the thought of this. When the first steep hill came for me to drive up, I got sweaty and out of breath. I demanded silence and open windows from Levi. I gripped the steering wheel like my life depended on it. And I shrieked and yelled and cursed. BUT I didn't die!!! But then there was a really steep hill to drive DOWN. Yeesh. I did it though. By the end of the day, there wasn't quite as much cursing, sweating, panting, and shrieking. I passed the test!
Our first stop of the day was breakfast at MarketBar at the Ferry Building. It was divine. We shared crepes with caramelized apples and the baked egg, persimmon, and bacon flatbread. Ahhh, everything was so good.
After breakfast, it was time to drive over the magnificent Golden Gate Bridge. I've driven over the bridge tons of times, but I've never been the driver. This was a momentous occasion. The second the bridge was in sight, Levi and I became positively giddy. He was snapping photos. We were chattering a mile a minute. It was perfect. The car had a moon roof, so I told him that he HAD to look up as we drove under the towers (don't tell the DMV... but I sneaked a peek too. Bad, Jasmine!!).
When we got to the other side of the bridge, our excitement only escalated. Levi was in awe. Marin County is so spectacularly beautiful. It seriously takes my breath away. The drive to Mill Valley was beautiful, and I kept checking to see if Levi was loving it as much as I do. He was. :)
Our plan was to spend a little bit of time in Mill Valley before we headed over to Sausalito to hang out with Camilla, Damir, and company. We got to the downtown area and stopped at Depot Café for a snack (breakfast was delicious, but teeny). Then we wandered in and out of shops for a bit, until Camilla told us that they were all settled back at home.
Camilla and Damir are now living in the sweet little guest cottage of her parent's GLORIOUS home. Their house is probably my favorite house in the world. I'm really not exaggerating. Their view is heavenly, and Camilla and Damir get to share the same exact view! Check out Stacey's post on the house for more pictures.
We hung out at Camilla and Damir's, drank the BEST Turkish coffee and snacked on potato pastries (all made by Damir's sweet mother who flew in all the way from Slovenia for the wedding), laughed, and shared stories about the wedding the night before. It was perfect. I'm so grateful that I got to spend a couple hours with Camilla after the wedding.
After we left, we headed back to Mill Valley for a bit more exploring. We popped into Mill Valley Market to pick up snacks to take back to the hotel. We were really trying to get a feel for the place, to imagine what it would be like to live there. Sometimes when I'm trying to fall asleep at night, I picture the future, shopping at Mill Valley Market with my children. It helps me fall right to sleep.
We explored the surrounding area a bit (including checking out the closest Anthropologie in Corte Madera... I have to get the lay of the land after all!) before heading back to the city for dinner... and a mighty fine dinner it was! We feasted on warm goat cheese and arugula salad, moules mariniere (mussels), and steak frites at Gamine. Camilla introduced me to Gamine back in September, and I will never visit San Francisco again without a meal there. It's my favorite restaurant anywhere. After dinner, we returned the car and took a walk down to Union Square where we found some dessert, tried to go ice skating (the wait was soooo long), looked at pets who were up for adoption in store windows, and talked about our day.
Sunday was the most perfect. It was a glimpse of our future... what a serene, beautiful, exciting future we have.