Accommodations, DESTINATIONS, Restaurants & Bars, Road Trips, TRAVEL, Travel Planning, United States

Great Hotel in Carpenteria CA

Refreshed and Ready for the Road
Refreshed and Ready for the Road


When you’re traveling, is a good night’s sleep good luck or good planning? Or could it be because you’re too exhausted to do anything else?

We Gotta Get Out of LA

As we surrendered to Navi (the GPS) and headed north, I was fantasizing about pillows and linen,but my job as navigator wasn’t over.  About the time we got to Thousand Oaks, Bill wanted to eat.  Food was just about the last thing I wanted, but through experience I’ve learned, when Bill wants food I’d better find a restaurant.

Gastronomic Detour

Do you remember what life was like before our electronic traveling friends?  You drove along hoping to see a sign on the side of the road, but you’d never just pull off the road, because you might never figure out how to get back.  Using that method, I might have made it to Carpenteria without having to stop, but no, Bill tells me to get out my phone.  Lo and behold, Google Local tells me there’s a BJ’s in the neighborhood and Bill takes the next exit.  We kept Navi pointed towards Carpenteria and used Local to get to BJ’s.

Now I really want to whine and complain about how awful it was, because I was really tired and not very hungry, but we shared BJ’s new Roast Beef Dip Sandwich, and I’ve got to be honest with you, it was really good.  In my day we called them French Dip Sandwiches, but I guess in this new politically-correct world, that might have some negative connotation – like all French people are dips.  Either that or some teenager planning their menu didn’t know their au jus from their assembly line.

A Reward at the End of our Drive

Sandwich happily consumed, we drove on to Carpenteria and found the Holiday Inn Express where I’d made our reservations.  This was an older property, but completely renovated, so you had all the charm of the old with all the convenience of the new.  The desk clerk checked us in like a champ, then we found a parking place close to our room and we moved ourselves in.

The room was wonderful.  A small seating area and mini-kitchen were separated from the bed by an attractive divider.  The furniture was new, but some older decorative touches were carried into the new design to add character.  We were very happy.

I would have loved to crawl in bed oblivious to everything, but I knew the drill.  I wake up at six and Bill doesn’t. I’d get up raring to go and Bill would be livid at my rattling around, if I didn’t get things ready ahead of time.  So, with a foggy brain I started re-organizing everything and getting ready for the rest of the trip, because packing for a flight and packing for a road trip are two different things.

Those gifts that took up half my suitcase? Well they were moved to the tote-bag.  All my shoes, belts and accessories?  I’d packed a fold-up nylon bag for them.  Pretty much everything else we packed needed to be shuffled around, too.  When I’d reorganized everything to suit me, I pulled out my exercise gear and an outfit for the next day, then fell into bed.  I was asleep before my head hit the pillow.

A Bright New Day

Yes, I did wake up at six.  I slithered into my workout clothes and found the exercise room – a nice one I might add.  They didn’t have a recumbent stationary bike, like I do at home, but the treadmills were in good working order and I slammed out an hour of cardio.  Then I was starving, so I went to the breakfast bar.

Cinnamon Rolls from Heaven
Cinnamon Rolls from Heaven

Let me tell you this – Holiday Inn Express rocks their breakfast buffet.  My particular favorite is their cinnamon rolls.   But they have everything from bacon and eggs to a pancake machine to hot biscuits.  They also have healthy things, so with my single cinnamon roll I had a boiled egg, yogurt and apple juice.

I returned to the room and Bill was stirring, so I returned to the breakfast bar with him – not to eat, just for companionship.  He got breakfast down, we got ready for the day and headed out.

Vacation Day One is ahead and it was a great one, so come back next week.

2 thoughts on “Great Hotel in Carpenteria CA”

  1. Jane – This blog is a positively wonderful read. Your writing is growing by leaps and bounds. It drew me in and I was right there with you in not wanting to stop for something to eat because I wasn’t hungry at the time to rearranging my schedule because our sleeping times didn’t sink. But, we know compromise is what makes a marriage grand and traveling partners even better.
    You are absolutely right about packing for the road and the air are two different animals. When packing for road trips (and I started doing this for staying all day and night at the hospital with Tom) I’d use a medium size zip pouch. Inside the pouch I place every clothing item to include accessories I want for that particular day. I always packed my valuables in a carry on that I had to take in every night along with good jewelry, electronics and that type of thing. It always saved a lot of carrying of luggage hither and yon.


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