Monday, June 27, 2011

The Morning Reveal

One of the very best parts of traveling to a new place is arriving at night and then waking up in the morning to a location reveal.

Have you seen the movie Enchanted April? I recently watched it again and realized it's not nearly as good as I remembered. BUT the money shot is still the money shot.

After a long train journey from London to Italy, two tired, middle-aged British women arrive to a dark and rainy Italian villa. They think they've made a horrible decision renting the place, but in the morning, they open their wooden shutters to find a glimmering Lake Como (see second 00:57).

My most memorable travel reveal happened on a trip I took 14 years ago from Cairo to northern Israel. After a miserably hot and dusty 12-hour bus ride across the Sinai desert (with the sickest squat toilet I've ever used), through the not-so-friendly Egypt-Israel border crossing, and after getting lost in Tel Aviv searching for a connecting bus, I was dropped at a dark gas station just off of a major highway. 15 minutes after figuring out how to use an Israeli pay phone, Ashley, an old friend, arrived in the back of a pick-up truck to take me to her kibbutz.

In the morning, I opened the door of her pale purple cabin to find I was in a dream. Situated in the middle of a eucalyptus grove, the kibbutz was filled with the fresh smell of citrus and lavender. While Ashley spent the morning picking avocados, I sat on a bench watching a small tortoise's determined journey from one tree to another.

I bring this up now because it just happened again. Jared and I went to Ojai for a wedding last weekend and thanks to a tip off from HBT we rented out The Love Shack instead of staying at a hotel.

We drove up from LA after sunset, arrived in the darkness, and woke up to this.

The best part was that while we could hear water near the the cabin at night, we had no idea how close we were to the river until the morning.

Such a great morning reveal!

p.s. That villa on top isn't the one in Enchanted April. Just a random photo from the internet of a villa that may or may not belong to George Clooney.

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