Exploring Ojai

On Saturday, Shay went with me to Bestbuy where I finally committed and bought a new lens for my camera. I've been using my camera more often now and wanted to buy a lens that would improve the quality of my photos. I was looking for one with better zoom that would help when I'm out and about shooting, so after quite a lot of research and thought, I took the plunge and bought the 55mm-250mm lens. It's definitely bigger and better than the standard lens I've been using so I'm super excited to start playing with its features and hopefully developing some really cool content.

I wanted to adventure so we ended up spending Saturday on the beach, climbing rocks and watching the Ocean. Shay was patient as I played with my new lens and I climbed heights and watching him wander. Come Sunday, it was time for a trip so I picked him up in the afternoon and we drove to Ojai for the day. Ojai is a town a few miles up Highway 33 lined with old shops and warm streets. Tourists come and park their cars for the day and spend their time wandering into shops and enjoying the small town scene. We got lost in the park with the big beautiful trees and watched as lines gathered for ice cream cones in the summer time. It was a beautiful day and it will forever be a great memory.

When Shay mentioned Ojai the day before, I looked it up and found a place I just absolutely had to see - Bart's Books. It's a huge hidden outdoor bookstore in Ojai lined with shelves upon shelves of beautiful old paperbacks. The bookstore is known for its rare collection and unique finds. In 1964, this beautiful bookstore began a neat tradition that has been upheld to this day. Books at this shop are purchased via the honor system. Coffee cans are spread around ontop of the shelves and when you've finished selecting a title or two, you can leave payment in the cans. There are thirty-five scent finds and books lounging around that are hundreds and hundreds of years old.  The entire space smelled of pressed pages and stories and it was fun to get lost for a short while in between the shelves.

While we roamed the town, I found a liking to a gorgeous little gardening store. Trinkets and Cacti were decorated on the walls and gathered by the floors. Fairy lights lined the ivy growing on the roof and sides and little signs popped up here and there with gentle quotes that reminded us we're real. I love cacti so I was overly excited to find them in every corner. Big and small, pointy and stubby, the store was what I want my home to look like one day. Free and alive.

Ojai and this weekend seem like a dream. I made a resolution at the beginning of the year to travel more and see things. I didn't actually expect to go places and find so much life in corners that aren't confined to my comfort zone. I felt happy. This weekend was happiness and smiles and I was able to spend it with someone who gave me all that. A lot is up in the air right now but I'm writing to remember the joy, to remember Ojai and the drive, the streets and the trees, and to remember the boy who experienced it all with me. 

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