Many people who suggested I visit Ojai know me very well and therefore told me I would love it. They were right!
At first glance it’s one of those small mountain towns that you can’t tell right away if it will be creepy or not…like Taos, NM…I always found Taos creepy, although many people would disagree. (Many creepy people – I kid, I kid!)
But Ojai is not creepy. Instead it’s a place that nestles you in a warm blanket just as it itself is nestled in a scenic valley surrounded by orange groves – I mean, the whole place smells of citrus! Come on! Suddenly I found myself switching to the local country station, kicking off my shoes and driving along barefoot, while feeling an overwhelming peace within.
Meditation Mount may have had something to do with my peaceful, easy feeling, as it was the first place I stopped on my way in and I ended up spending a few hours there. Of course, if you’re going to offer up a free library of spiritual reads and a couch, I’m kicking off my shoes (again) and staying awhile.
I began day two in Ojai with a visit to Full of Beans Coffee House. This is one of those times you realize you were led somewhere by a higher power, because I had no idea of the gorgeous outdoor patio and garden awaiting me. I ordered a ginormous cinnamon roll and coffee and relaxed in a chair – keeping my shoes on this time.
To burn off the decadent treat I hit up Shelf Road Trail with its amazing views of the Ojai valley. Here I ran into a most interesting Ojai resident and fellow spiritual seeker. We ended up chatting for over an hour and I even walked her home where we had a fun astrology reading on her front porch – I was told I was to write, hmmm – talk about random – and completely awesome!
My new friend suggested Bart’s Books, an independantly owned and operated outdoor bookstore. Yes, yes, and yes!! This place was entirely my heaven. Books and sunshine – what else does one require?
I finished up my last day in Ojai with a sunset hike once again on the Self Road Trail. I thought there was no better way to say goodbye then taking in one last view from above the entire valley in all its glorious citrus beauty.
Patio at Full of Beans Coffee and Bakery
Views from Shelf Road Trail
Final Thoughts: I fell in love. So will you, if you’re anything like me: really awesome and not creepy at all.