Where are you?
I'm in Santorini, Greece, with its white-washed buildings and its azure sea. In Interlaken, Switzerland, with its pasture so green it makes my eyelids quiver. In Maui, where a double-rainbow crests over the Pacific. In Norway, where fjords jut in and out in majestic glory. In the Dead Sea. In Cordova, Alaska. In a color-splashed market in Mexico City.
It's no secret that I love to travel, and I've had the chance to see some incredibly lovely sights over the years. But there's beauty everywhere. And some of the most stunning spots are those within a few hours of where I live: Big Sur, Mendocino, and even a small cottage in Woodside, California, home to a talented writer/photographer/artist named Erin Gleeson.
I mentioned in a prior post that I'd recently attended a book party in honor of Yvette van Boven's new cookbook, Home Made Summer. Yvette is based in Amsterdam and Paris, and even though Erin and Yvette had never met, Erin offered to host a party at her home during Yvette's U.S. book tour. My friend Emma invited me to tag along as her guest.
When I walked down the wooden steps to Erin's home, my mouth formed one of those cartoon o's.
Towering trees dwarfed the house on all sides. And Erin, in her quiet way and with her artist's sensibility, did an outstanding job both deferring to nature, and complementing it.
Nibbling on dishes from Yvette's book and Erin's blog (called The Forest Feast), we guests reveled in a place so natural and unique, it rivaled many of the better-known spots to which I've traveled.
Because beauty can be near or far, sophisticated or stripped down.
It can be luxurious, like expensive jewels.
Don't look too far or too hard.
I promise. You'll find it.