*Wisconsin here is metaphoric, representing anywhere where it's so cold outside you do anything possible to not take the trash out. I'm also literally in Wisconsin, conveniently.
We went to California in September, starting with a night and day in San Fran and then driving down to Carmel-by-the-Sea. We didn't take the most direct way to Carmel, we took the best way. And here's the life lesson nestled in this travel post: sometimes the most direct and the best way are different.
In this case, it was obvious: THE PACIFIC COAST HIGHWAY IS THE MOST AMAZING ROAD IN THE WORLD. No offense to the street I grew up on. (Much love, Trillium Dr.)
Carmel is quite possibly the nicest place I've ever been, objectively speaking. There were people there from all over the world. Foreign languages surrounded me; people clearly thought it was worth the international airfare to go there. Stephen told me Rome was like that, too. (I've never been to Rome, go figure.)
If time were no factor, I would have spent an entire day marveling at the cottage-style Carmel houses. Most have adorable names like Robin's Nest, Sanctuary, and Pear Tree cottage. Of course, we opted to spend our days driving along the PACIFIC COAST HIGHWAY instead**.