After that, we got some frozen yogurt from Tutti Melon, a place that reminded me of Berry Line, and drove to Oakland. The drive was really pretty. There was a gorgeous cliffside view at one point and I had GP pull over so we could get out and enjoy it. It's really interesting to be able to see the fog without being in the fog. That sort of thing is less common in Boston.
We had paper directions to the labyrinth in a beautiful preserve. We got there in the early afternoon. It was sunny and hot, we regretted not bringing sunscreen, hats, and other hot-weather accoutrements. But we did have a bottle of water and layers of clothing that we could adjust. I commented to GP that I was feeling very Californian in my silk skirt, scarf, and purple sneakers. We had been told the labyrinth was less than a mile from the parking lot, which was true. What I hadn't realized was that that was mostly up. So it was a pretty decent hike. I did wish I had my hiking boots at that point. If I visit the area again I will at least bring my Docs.
The vistas were incredible. The sky was intensely blue, the foliage very green. I enjoyed seeing the ways that the plants and insects and dirt looked similar to and different from what I'm used to. Most of the flowers I didn't recognize, and a tree startled me by being a dark reddish brown rather than the gray-brown we typically see on the East Coast.
We found the labyrinth just as I started to get worried that we would never find it. It was subtle, we started to go past it before I recognized it for what it was. It was gorgeous, made of rocks and wildflowers in the classical style. We each walked it in turn.
After we hiked back to the car we amused ourselves in bridge traffic by singing songs, perhaps most notably American Pie, Van Diemen's Land by U2, and the obscure Beatles song Oh! Darling. We each thought the other had a lovely voice. As we got more warmed up and comfortable it sounded better and better and was more and more fun. I hope we'll get to sing together again sometime.
Once we reached Casa Hyphen I got changed for dinner. I was going out to see harlequinade and meet his sweetheart shaix. It was not a formal dress occasion but I did want to wear clothes that weren't sweaty. GP dropped me off. Their apartment is completely gorgeous and completely them, and yes, that's a compliment. I got to snuggle with harlequinade while shaix cooked. The dinner she made was praiseworthy - duck with cherry sauce, tender delicious asparagus, and potatoes with onions - and we praised it accordingly. Om nom nom. I probably had a bit more than I should have. harlequinade drove me back to Casa Hyphen and I caught him up on some details from my life.
Back at the homestead, we decided once again not to go out. It had been a long day and we wanted some down time. We read in the comfy TV room and I got a foot rub from my ever-accommodating host before we turned in for the night.