Did I feel lucky? Well, yes I did…punk

A couple of years ago, I had the opportunity to take a day trip from Santa Clara down to San Diego for a mud run at Camp Pendleton. I stopped for just a couple of hours at Carmel-by-the-Sea. It took just those short moments to totally fall in love with this part of California. Picturesque. Quaint. Storybook. All words that describe this little town on the Monterey Coast. Going on my 2010 Road Trip, I knew one of my stops just HAD to be Carmel again.

I had planned my route over and over for several weeks prior to taking off. I had hoped to get to Carmel by about 6 p.m. at night. But I woke up with a fever the morning we headed out to Hearst Castle so I instead of taking off by 7:30 a.m. according to my carefully detailed route, we crashed in the room until about 10 a.m. so I could feel a bit better. So we didn’t get to Carmel that night until about 8:30 p.m. (this after stopping in Big Sur for dinner, too, along the way)

I found a cute little inn just four blocks from the beach for a really reasonable rate and got us checked in. Since we were behind “the sched” a bit, I knew I would have to get up early to enjoy more of the lovely Carmel scenery. I decided the best way to do this was to get up at 6 and go running down along the beach.

About 6:15 in the morning, I jumped out of bed (slowly rolled is more like it), threw on some warm clothes (it was only 38 degrees outside), plugged my ipod earphones into my head and strolled out the front door. I ran briskly the four blocks down to the beach and started to run down along the waterfront, smelling the fantastic ocean air and enjoying a quiet early morning hour with only 2 people on the beach.

I ran for just a few minutes before I stopped, took my earphones off, and just stared in silent contemplation at the rolling waves rhythmically crashing on the shore. I looked to my left and saw a man out of the corner of my eye and heard him call to his dog.

‘Hmm, that voice sounds familiar,’ I thought to  myself. But I didn’t think too much of it and put my earphones in to start running again.

As I worked to get the last earphone in my ear, I came upon the man and looked up to nod a morning hello. And as I looked up, I dang near tripped…because the guy on the beach was CLINT EASTWOOD. Oh. My. GOSH. I nodded and smiled and he said quickly before looking away, “It’s a cold morning for a jog.”

“Unh huh.” I nodded (did a lot of nodding in this situation) and kept on running by as if every day I ran by Clint Eastwood on the beach.

I was too afraid to turn around and stare at him as I kept running down the beach so I ran for about a mile before I dared to even turn my head. I slowed to soft jog and turned to run back, wondering if I would pass him again on the way. But no. He was gone. Just like my breath in the chilly coast air.

And that is how I came to be best friends with Dirty Harry. {okay, well, maybe just have a “run in” — literally — with Senor Eastwood}

One more reason why I love Carmel!




  1. Amy · January 9, 2011

    Well, that’s just FREAKIN’ RAD!!! I would have tripped and made and idiot of myself…

  2. Big Mamo · January 10, 2011

    And you could still stand up (let alone run) ? Wow! All the times I’ve been to Carmel I’ve never seen him—but I’m not out running early in the morning …

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