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Dillon Redux

October 4, 2021

Jim and I used to visit Dillon Beach annually. Long ago, he found this great little house on Summer Street and, from the moment we saw it, we knew we wanted to return. I know why we didn’t make it in 2020, but have no idea what the circumstances were in 2108 and 2019 that precluded our going. Still…. we knew we’d get back there, and this was the year. A return trip cannot come soon enough.

(Says me, anyway.) (Jim’s game, and enjoys it, but it’s not his idea of a perfect getaway.) (This begs many questions, none of which I’ll take up now.) (That said, we had a wonderful time … on many levels!)

Where was I?

In all of our trips to Dillon Beach, I have taken hundreds and hundreds (and hundreds!) of photos. The drive between Hwy 37 and the Pacific Ocean is breathtaking… from rural roads, to historic Petaluma, to more rural and pastoral roads, through charming Tomales, to Dillon. The rolling hills of grazing cattle, herds of sheep, classic barns, eucalyptus-lined meandering roads…. all incredibly charming. The beaches, dunes, cliffs and rugged shoreline of the insanely gorgeous Northern California coast… always stunning, no matter the weather. I love it all and can’t help myself… I take pictures.. because I just can’t not. Even though I don’t even bother to bring a real camera anymore, one that would allow zooms and closeups and crisp resolution. I’m no trained photographer, but a good camera helps even somebody like me capture some incredible scenes.

These days, though, it’s just me and my iPhone. Pretty good, but way limited. As I looked back to figure out when last we stayed in our sweet little hunk of over the top luxury, I found some truly exquisite photos. I should post THOSE! But it wouldn’t be right.

Anyway. Here are a few scenes from day one:

Shot through the window of a moving vehicle… the view along Lakeville Rd:

When you travel this road in October, you miss the verdant green of Winter and Spring. Still…. I just love it.

Tradition includes lunch in Petaluma (after which we’ll provision for four days of meals — some cooking, but lots of snacks — at Whole Foods). Being Monday and still in the pandemic zone, a lot of places we’ve eaten at previously were closed, so we tried a new place called Pearl, located outside of the downtown area (but close) in a bit of a gentrified industrial area, 1st and G, a block up from the river.

I didn’t take any photos, except for the menu… creative middle eastern food:

I had the swordfish, Jim the bocadillo, and we had the middle two desserts. All exceptional.

Oh, wait, I do have a picture of the desserts:

Continuing the drive, just as we were pulling into the wee village of Tomales, we saw this leaning silo. One of the shots is from arrive day, one is from depart day:

Here’s just an establishment shot of Dillon Beach… mostly because I don’t think I’ve ever included it in my Dillon photo essays…

Tom, the previous owner, for a variety of reasons, decided to sell his beloved Summer Street cabin. While the new owners obviously love the place and are maintaining Tom’s high standards, they’ve also changed a number of things… starting with the color. It’s now a white house, which was a bit of a jolt.. but it’s nice enough:

Here’s me in front (taken, actually, on depart day…):

We hadn’t even fully unpacked before Jim was in his favorite chair…(he’ll spend a lot of time in this chair over the next four days, usually with a fire going in that stove…).

The view hasn’t changed….

… thought that fish — constructed with the metal rings of wine barrels — is new (photo taken on the last day when the sun actually came out in full).

But here are a few things that are new (to us):

This whole fireplace and outdoor seating area…

And here’s Mr. Orange Hat seated in that very fun (and new to us) hanging basket (I spent some good time in it reading one afternoon… heavenly)…

They’ve done a lot with the interior… lots of white, a brand new very fancy bathroom with heated marble floors and a soaking tub, new furniture, etc. I didn’t take a lot of interior pictures, but here’s one of the couch — site of all of our tv watching (Nine Perfect Strangers and Catastrophe were our selections this trip)…

The truth is, there are so many areas of this home to enjoy. Numerous cozy places to sit inside, and numerous places to hang out outside, as well. Between all the inside and outside spaces, you could easily accommodate 8-10 people, all of whom could claim their own personal spots! There are never enough days to get your fill. Here are a couple more shots of the backyard. They limit the number of guests to two these days (in spite of having two full sleeping areas).