Maybe it’s because I grew up going there with my New Age-y dad, attending cleansing ceremonies, drum circles, late-night dance parties in dried-up riverbeds . . . you know, totally normal kid stuff.
But I don’t think it’s just my formative “crystal-twinkie” experiences that left this impression of Ojai on my mind. No, it’s more than that. Located half an hour inland from coastal Santa Barbara, nestled in a valley at the base of the Topatopa mountains, warm and still and sheltered, and strangely situated along a perpetually-dry white-rock river bed. There’s just . . . there’s just something about Ojai!
If you’ve ever been there, you know what I mean. There’s something in the air there – the way it seems to crackle even when it’s unnaturally calm. Magic.
Jeremy works 6 days a week, and he only ever has Mondays off. Monday is a big day for me with school, and it’s usually booked with meetings. So it’s rare these days that Jeremy and I get an actual day off together.
Until spring break! And this spring break, we seized upon our single simultaneous free day, and we milked that sucker for everything it was worth.
36 blissful hours in Shangri-La . . . er, I mean Ojai. From Sunday evening through Tuesday morning we stayed at maybe the coolest hotel I’ve ever stayed in – The Ojai Rancho Inn (we paid full price in case you were wondering – this is not an add, I just really loved them), we ate at my favorite spots like The Farmer and the Cook and Hip Vegan (reuben spring rolls!) and Vegan Mario’s and Rainbow Bridge, we took nature walks and drank black lemonade (with activated charcoal, it was kind of mind-blowing), rode bikes in the twilight, and finished it all off with a perfectly romantic picnic.