Friday, April 27, 2018

California Strong--Author Discovers You Can't Go Back Home

By Cal Orey
You are where you're supposed
to be
Last weekend I took a trip out of town to Gilroy “The Garlic Capital of the World” for an author book signing at Barnes and Noble bookstore and a treat of revisiting Monterey. After the new Tea and Honey books event (the store needed a larger selection of tea!) it was onward to the sea. The plan was to stroll along the wharf (like I did years ago), munch on sizzling hot fish and chips or fish soup with bread. But now I recall, always have Plan B. 

Trying to find a woodsy hotel in Pacific Grove was a task while driving in circles amid traffic. Once there, it was back to Cannery Row, the place noted by my fave author John Steinbeck. I must tell you, though, on a busy Saturday night the tourist crowd overshadowed the sensory details of food. As a bit of a reclusive writer, the hustle bustle of strangers was uh, um overwhelming. I sensed a Finding Forrester ball game anxiety moment coming on when an Uber driver rescued me (a centered driver that I'll always be grateful for her efforts) out of the crowd filled with cameras and chaos--and back to the serene and spacious hotel suite, complete with wood paneling, a fireplace, and an "aha" view of the woods. Ironically, it was much like my rustic but charming cabin at Tahoe (without my zen-like cat and fluffy Aussie)--and no tea.
Love the ocean, adore the Lake
Lone cypress tree 
The next morning, taking the 17-Mile Drive in Pebble Beach, viewing the fog, ocean, golf courses, and million dollar estates, Del Monte Forest, and on the way home, stopping at the Moss Landing roadside produce stand made me smile. I stocked up on budget-friendly tomatoes, garlic, and other California fruits and vegetables utopia. Now I know why the health-oriented coastal characters in the TV show Big Little Lies have limitless bowls and bowls of produce on their counter tops for breakfast and dinner.  After all, they're near the agricultural hub of the nation! Back home again in my comfort zone, I cooked up this Monterey-inspired tomato-garlic-y pasta sauce and spaghetti (like husband Ed serves to his imperfect but likable family) to make up for the lack of dinner with an ocean view I didn’t get.
Garlic toast or warmed up French bread works
Big Little Lies Home-style Spaghetti
 ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
¼ cup garlic cloves and yellow onion, minced
6 Roma tomatoes, chopped
Italian seasoning to taste (dried or fresh)
Ground black pepper and sea salt to taste
Easy meal, healthful California fare
Whole grain spaghetti
Parmesan cheese, shavings
Basil (garnish)
Old country Italian Bread, fresh (Safeway bakery)
European-style butter or olive oil (for dipping bread)

In a deep skillet on medium heat place olive oil, garlic, and onions. Add tomatoes, and spices. Turn to simmer. Cook about 25 minutes until the tomatoes turn into a chunky sauce texture. While the sauce is simmering, cook pasta per box directions. When al dente, remove. Place pasta on plates, top with sauce. Sprinkle with cheese and basil. Serve with slices of warm French bread and real butter or dip in olive oil. Serves two or three.
My home now is in the mountains
The garlic aroma in the kitchen took me back to the food smells I remember when I used to go to Cannery Row--a different time (probably a week day; what was I thinking?).While I didn’t get the eats by the sea, home-style spaghetti with slices of warm French bread in the mountains (off season) is just as good. Perhaps I needed to see if the cypress gems are greener on the other side to appreciate towering pine trees surrounding me at Lake Tahoe--my home now.

— Cal Orey, M.A., is an author and journalist. Her books include the Healing Powers Series (Vinegar, Olive Oil, Chocolate, Honey, Coffee, Tea, and Superfoods) published by Kensington. (The collection has been featured by the Good Cook Book Club.)  Her website is 

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Travels with the Healing Powers Series Author: Gilroy, Monterey, Pacific Grove

By Cal Orey
Author Goes Home to Northern/Central California

Last weekend I took a nostalgic road trip down memory lane, from Lake Tahoe to Gilroy known as the "Garlic Capital of the World"--and much more... My primary goal was attending a book signing at the town's Barnes and Noble bookstore, but of course, my list of must-dos was a long one. After the book event, it was onward to Monterey-Pacific Grove.  Yep, Cannery Row, and the 17 Mile Drive were part of the journey.  I had a fun agenda ahead but sharing the Healing Powers Series was first and foremost on my road duties of  being an author going back home.
Store Image
Gilroy Crossing

Steinbeck loved the sea, dogs
Enter Gilroy: It is a city in in Northern California's Santa Clara County, south of Morgan Hill, and has decades of flashbacks for me. In the eighties, I took a bus out of San Jose and performed hours and hours of research in the John Steinbeck Public Library in Salinas; later writing a story about the author and his love for canines, published in Dog World Magazine. And, I chose Steinbeck who was born in Salinas (touted for its grape vineyards and vegetable growers, the backdrop of his novels) as one of my three authors to study for the oral exams in graduate school at S.F.S.U.  Not to forget, as a lover of his novel Travels with Charley (he drove a camper with his Standard Poodle in tow across  America), inspired, I hitched and hiked with my dog, a black Lab, across the U.S., Canada, and Mexico.. and these days continue to write about my past and share present on the road escapades in the Healing Powers Series. 

Quake Prediction in
Gilroy Dispatch
Leaving Skyler is a Challenge
Also, I recall my visit to the Gilroy Garlic Festival (eating garlic fries and garlic ice cream); and the sobering October 17, 1989 Loma Prieta Earthquake and how this region was affected...Years later, I wrote about it in The Man Who Predicts Earthquakes; a biography about the late geologist Jim Berkland whom actually predicted the major shaker the rocked my world and the nation with its impact. His  forecast come-true was published in the Gilroy Dispatch on Friday the 13th. And his life changed when the earthquake hit at 5:04 P.M., and moved the Earth for 15 seconds. In 2006, Berkland attended our book signing at Gilroy's Barnes and Noble and spoke to a crowd of his fans--as I was stuck in the sierras due to weather conditions and a bout of shyness since the man always drew a crowd. 
On April 21, off season and springtime in the mountains (heaven), I did make the five hour trip to Gilroy and am happy for the journey. I left the mountains to revisit the agricultural hub and smell salty sea air along Cannery Row. My beloved Australian Shepherd was not happy; kenneled with other dogs, separated from me; I found a pet sitter for the sensitive Siamese, Zen (who went on strike and didn't sleep with me the night before). The challenges were a bit stressful--not zen-like-- but I wanted to go back home.

And I sat through bumper to bumper traffic in Sacramento, got fresh images of change in San Francisco Bay Area, as I drove past my hometown of San Jose (where I was born and raised) and on into Gilroy--a place full of memories. Once inside the cool and calm bookstore (it was a hot day, especially in contrast to Tahoe) I felt an instant sense of  belonging. As I put myself into extrovert mode, chatting to staff and customers it was apparent. Gilroy locals are warm, down-to-earth people and I enjoyed the lingering conversations. There wasn't a gigantic audience awaiting me (I have experienced that, though) but it was a beautiful day outside (versus me indoors) and there were good people, good chats and some good books signed and purchased.

Baby boomers (male) were especially interested in my reader-friendly book collection (all penned in the mountains even though I adore the ocean environment and cherish my Santa Cruz days and nights) because they appreciate good health,  and farm-to-table eats. 

And, it was The Healing Powers of Honey that attracted attention. I didn't know why at first.  (Going back home to Tahoe I noticed beekeepers' honey signs on the road and jars of local honey for sale at produce stands.) As a I sipped a cup of chamomile tea (courtesy of the store manager) folks of all ages shared their feelings about eating better for more energy and longevity, to fighting seasonal allergies and beating high blood pressure... Also, we chatted about farming, water wars, and earth changes. It was enlightening and pleasurable to communicate and bond with people who were real. No attitude, just plain talk. 
Penned Healing Powers Series
in the sierras
When I glanced at the wall mural my eyes met the face of author John Steinbeck. I had come home full circle. Feeling the vibe around me of the two earth-minded mentors in my life--John Steinbeck and Jim Berkland was as good as it gets--and a genuine warmth of this specific bookstore and its people (I have been to hundreds of signings, big and small, over the years) I felt right at home. But while I sense my place at this time in life is still California--Lake Tahoe is like putting on your favorite jeans and exhaling for the comfortable fit.

--Cal Orey, M.A., is an author and journalist. Her books include the Healing Powers Series (Vinegar, Olive Oil, Chocolate, Honey, Coffee, Tea, and Superfoods) published by Kensington and available at fine bookstores everywhere. (The collection has been featured by One Spirit, Literary Guild, and the Good Cook Book Club.)  Her website is

Thursday, April 19, 2018

The Skinny Springtime Smoothie to Energize You

By Cal Orey

B-r-r. It’s oh-so 30-ish chilly smoothie weather outside in the sierras. So, you’re probably wondering why  I’m bringing cold smoothies to the table, right? Well, they’re energizing, calming, and super delicious! So why not.  During springtime in the mountains even though we get snow, rain, and some sunshine, it’s a time for getting a move on like our hungry coyotes and mice. Blame it on Spring Fever.
And seasonal fruit smoothies are easy to make. Throughout the years living on the south shore, I’ve had my share of the drinks that go back to the seventies. Yep, I’ve been introduced to mega health food types with the server asking me, “How many scoops of protein powder?” to ice cream parlor tropical flavors blended by workers who don’t know what sugary syrups ingredients are being added to the colorful beverage. So, after a while it hit me and I thought, “I can whip up a smoothie. How hard can it be?”
One spring after drinking a smoothie, I recall swimming at one of our local resort pools. A well-known psychic was in the pool. When I shed my sweats and inched myself into the water to swim with her I’ll never forget what she said. “You look lean and healthy.” I accepted the compliment and swam after her, “Read me! Read me!” She told me, the health author, that I’d be on the Oprah show. Well, that didn’t happen but my photo was featured beneath the celeb’s pic in a women’s magazine that ran my articles. And I can still fit into size 4 skinny jeans by eating a balance of nutritious whole foods--and super smoothies on occasion.

This week, for instance, I went swimming followed by a dunk in the hot tub before noon while I watched and savored snow flurries outdoors. (Off season it was bliss.)  Back home instead of cooking, I made a quick smoothie with fresh fruit available at our friendly Safeway. It is good-for-you and tastes sweet and savory, too!
Super Strawberry Smoothie

1 cup strawberries, fresh, sliced
¼ cup pear, chopped
½ banana, fresh
5 small ice cubes
½ cup low-fat organic milk
1/2 cup all-natural plain Greek yogurt
½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Sweeten with honey to taste (local preferably)
Add nutmeg and cinnamon to taste (ground from cinnamon sticks is best)
Whipped cream (optional)
Chopped almonds or walnuts (optional)
Basil or mint (garnish)
In a blender, combine fruit, ice, milk, and yogurt. Blend until smooth. (All the better if your blender has a “smoothie” button.)  Add honey and spices; blend quickly. Pour into a large milkshake glass. Top with whipped cream, nuts and serve with a straw and spoon. Serves one or two. The texture of a smoothie, like this one, is thick and filling. Its mix of fruit and spicy flavors are like fresh crisp air in the spring. While ordering a smoothie when out and about at Tahoe it’s a treat. But doing it yourself is just as fun because you dish it up just the way you like it.

— Cal Orey, M.A., is an author and journalist. Her books include the Healing Powers Series (Vinegar, Olive Oil, Chocolate, Honey, Coffee, Tea, and Superfoods) published by Kensington. (The collection has been featured by the Good Cook Book Club.)  Her website is .

Healing Powers Series Author Shares TEA & HONEY LOVE

By Cal Orey

Wellness in a Cup—Discover the Benefits of Tea for Your Body and Mind!

 It picks you up and calms you down, warms you and refreshes you. With black, white, red, green, and herbal varieties, there’s a tea for every taste, and now this time-honored superfood is trending as the drink of choice for health-conscious people of all ages and cultures. 

This fascinating book boils down the rich history of tea—as well as the ever-expanding list of health and weight loss benefits found in its leaves. 
*Discover how black and white teas are heating up the beverage world with antioxidants and nutrients that lower the risk of heart disease, stroke, cancer, and fight off inflammation, viruses, and bacteria.
*Learn how age-defying spa treatments made from tea can soothe your skin, soften your hair, and give you an all-over 

glow and peace of mind.

 *Get the latest knowledge from top medical researchers and tea experts on how the superfood can tackle digestive problems, depression and anxiety, aches and pains, and add years to your life. 
*Stir up over 50 home cures to give yourself more energy, less stress, treat the common cold, insomnia, and more!
*Enjoy comforting and tea-licious recipes like Warm Scones with Jam and Devonshire Cream, Assorted Finger Sandwiches, Scrumptious White Tea Scallops, and Russian Tea Cookies paired with the perfect brew – hot or iced. 

Better health is just a sip away. With The Healing Powers of Tea (sweetened with lively stories) you’ll learn the hottest tips to improve your health, boost your brain power, and even clean your house!

Monday, April 16, 2018

Sightings on the West Coast--Intuitive Shares Happenings

In my 2018 Forecasts, I used my right brain and dished out prediction after prediction which come from my sixth sense.  No intellectualizing—just going with the creative process as intuitives and authors do. But, when I peeked and reread the words I almost deleted the West Coast tsunami alert, and especially, the UFO sighting. Too absurd, I thought. And the spooky thing is, those two predictions happened and others came to fruition and it’s not even mid-year.
Read on—and take a look at what happened before summertime…

1 UFO Sightings: Prediction: Speaking of flights, another UFO sighting may happen shocking people everywhere.
In late March, two pilots from two airlines shared observations of seeing an identified object in the air while they were flying over Arizona. We heard audio recordings released by The Federal Aviation Administration. Drones and other aircraft weren’t given credit for the UFO. We do not know exactly what the objects were. I believe it’s pompous to say there isn’t other life in the universe. I sense there are others from other planets and we are being watched. And, the chosen few have stories of making contact just like in films “Contact” and “Encounters of the Third Kind) we view on the big screen. It’s not a matter of when it’s when more of us will make closer contact.

2  West Coast Tsunami: Prediction: Not to forget the entire West Coast, including Seattle, Washington and British Columbia—the Cascadia Subduction Zone which is capable of repeating history. A major quake and at least a tsunami alert may happen warning the entire West Coast.
On January 23, 5:43 157 miles southeast of Kodiak Island, Alaska was hit by a 7.9 earthquake. It was a shallow 6.2 miles which spawned a tsunami alert for the entire West Coast. News headlines read, “Entire West Coast On Tsunami Watch After Earthquake Rocks Alaska.” Alaska, British Columbia (a place I visit frequently), and the Western coastal states were on alert. To me it’s a warning that one day a big wave may revisit.

3  California Earthquake: It seems like California has lost its reputation for being a shaky state. The U.S. Geological Survey experts note the risk of a great earthquake increases. As the lull continues the stress builds (especially on the San Andreas).
At 12:29 P.M. on April 5, breaking news greeted me and other folks in California. A 5.3 earthquake offshore in Channel Islands was widely felt in Southern California, 30 miles from Santa Barbara—where a 6.8 hit back in 1295. And the San Andreas Fault zone isn’t too far away, seismologists pointed out. Tick-tock. Tick-toc. Amazingly the California early earthquake warning system did work for countless people giving a heads up of the imminent shaker; some people shared that they had up to more than 30 seconds to prepare for the Earth to move. That short time can be major for first responders (firefighters and paramedics) as well as people to drop, duck, and cover.

4  Earthquake Trigger Effects: Prediction: Before spring and summer months, a major shaker (7.0, 70 percent probability) could rock the San Andreas (or faults nearby) in Southern California (Greater Los Angeles or Palm Springs) or the San Francisco Bay Area (the East Bay or South Bay regions as an epicenter. Worse, earthquakes could happen in both areas of the Golden State.
On April 16, two days before the great 1906 San Francisco earthquake, the earth moved in the San Francisco Bay Area (as I predicted on April 5th when interviewed on Coast AM; I warned of a possible trigger effect in our Golden State). A 3.8 earthquake rocked my hometown, Alum Rock in San Jose. Could it be the New Moon? Or is it a trigger effect?  Three minutes prior, a 3.8 rocked Bakersfield. Indeed, more seismic activity is in the cards this year for our shaky state. One more thing. Does rain and snow trigger small earthquakes? Scientists believe they can indeed do just that and California tremors are no exception.

 5   Significant Snowstorms: Prediction: A repeat drought in California may continue (despite a few significant snowstorms, mudslides, mega power outages). The winter 2017-2018 Precipitation Forecast points to less snowfall for the West Coast—more for the Northeast and Midwest. I see some flooding on the West Coast in the Pacific Northwest, Northern and Southern California.
I can personally attest California did get a few significant snowstorms, mudslides, avalanches, and power outages. And in March the ski industry was pleasantly surprised with snowstorms. It wasn’t a “Miracle March” with several feet of snow but it was noteworthy; and flooding did occur, whereas a drought may not be as severe as it was a few years ago.

Meanwhile, as we observe Earth changes, I admit it sort of shocked me to watch these surreal events unfold, one by one. The year is still young and you can bet (or I will) that more predicted happenings may rock your boat. Or not. Best advice: Be prepared.

 Spring Snowstorms on Cue
On Saint Patrick’s Day after shoveling white powder on the deck, I took a leap of faith and drove over the snow shrouded mountains (with my Australian shepherd in tow and survival food) to attend a book discussion/signing in Reno, Nevada. So much for lucky holidays and numbers, I thought. The roads were icy, cars were moving at a snail’s pace, and a couple of times I mumbled, “I’m turning back.”
Knowing I was stocked up on a comforter, granola bars, salt and vinegar potato chips, bottled water, and canine chow seemed a bit calming for a snow day raining on my parade. While there were a few close skidding out of control moments, no “Misery” car crash for this food book series author. 
On the way home, I wondered, “Why didn’t I bake chewy cookies and bring tea?”  A sobering flashback of hitchhiking in my twenties through a blizzard in Wyoming with my black Lab (not a snow-loving dog) paid me a visit and reminded me, "This too shall pass." We survived--and this time around, too.

--Cal Orey, M.A., is an author and journalist. Her books include the Healing Powers Series (Vinegar, Olive Oil, Chocolate, Honey, Coffee, Tea, and Superfoods) published by Kensington. (The collection has been featured by the Good Cook Book Club.)  Her website is

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Spring into Gourmet Tea Sandwiches

When I wrote the book The Healing Powers of Tea, I traveled to Canada and visited countless tearooms. I must admit, it's confusing to me how people can pay $75.00 and sit down to a tea feast full of sandwiches, scones, cakes, and cookies.  Not for me but it is pretty to look at. The way to stay lean is to not over indulge but choose a sandwich and savor the tea and more tea, of course! Perhaps a scone to take with you for a later treat is certainly okay in my book (literally).

Several spring seasons ago, a former mom-like neighbor friend of mine from the Beatnik era was making lunch (not at a fancy tearoom but a rustic mountain cabin) when I paid her a visit. It was a basic 20th century budget-friendly egg salad sandwich. She used plain white bread (the cookie cutter generic type), white eggs, basic mayo, and salt with a side of potato chips. The sandwiches were sliced in half filled with smooth, mushy yellow goo. I was offered a half triangle shape (which I do like) but I passed and ate a boiled egg sprinkled with ground pepper. One, because I’m a picky eater. Two, I’m one of those post-hippie girls and a purist snob. Translation: Brown eggs, dark greens, whole grain bread, and fresh herbs. But I didn’t try and preach my eating style and mum was the word.
Traditional egg salad sandwiches include chopped hard-boiled eggs, chopped, mayonnaise. It can be used on top of greens, too. Egg salad also can be dished up with a creative twist including herbs, spices, and an array of artisan breads. The roots of egg salad sandwiches traces back to John Montagu, 4th Earl of Sandwich, claim food historians who believe it’s about a century old. But I’m switching it up 21st century-style for all generations. Here is my healthy version of egg salad inspired by good neighbors and good food.
Gourmet Egg Salad Sandwiches
4 large brown, organic boiled eggs
4 tablespoons mayonnaise with olive oil
2-3 teaspoons red onion, chopped (optional)
1/2 cup organic spring baby spinach/kale mix
Ground pepper and fresh herbs (your choice) to taste
½ cup Roma tomatoes, sliced
French artisan baguette, sliced (or whole grain sliced bread, croissant, bagel)
Chives, chopped (optional)
In a bowl, lightly mix boiled eggs, chopped, with mayonnaise, onion, spices and herbs. Keep in chunky.  Put in fridge for about 30 minutes. Spread baguette slices with egg salad. Top with chives. Serves 6. * You can also slice a baguette (or bagel) in small submarine sandwich size. Top one slice with lettuce, egg salad mixture, lettuce, and tomatoes. Cover and eat whole or slice. Serves two.
Sweet Oven Fries: Wash, slice two large russet or sweet potatoes into wedges. Place in shallow pan or on cookie sheet. Drizzle olive oil and butter on top. Add a dash of ground black pepper and sea salt. Bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes or until golden brown. Turn at least once to get all potatoes crispy. Place on dish, sprinkle with fresh parsley. Serve with ketchup.

Cold and hot egg salad for unpredictable hump month--off season at Lake Tahoe--full of surprise snow, rain, and sunshine. Both ways with this egg sandwich treat work and provide a bit of a gourmet flair with a rustic touch. Perfect for living and eating in the mountains when you never know what type of weather you’re going to get so it’s best to be prepared. One more thing. Enhance these spring treats with iced or hot tea depending on the temperature outdoors.
— Cal Orey, M.A., is an author and journalist. Her books include the Healing Powers Series (Vinegar, Olive Oil, Chocolate, Honey, Coffee, Tea, and Superfoods) published by Kensington. (The collection has been featured by the Good Cook Book Club.)  Her website is .

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Tea, Scones, and Canada... Fond Memories

By Cal Orey
Vancouver, a city is heaven, but Victoria has a nice slower pace--
tea bliss was found by me in both places.

Twice when I was visiting Vancouver, British Columbia, I was smitten by the warmth and airy ambiance of tearooms, fresh, warm scones with clotted cream and tea--genuine deliciousness. This recipe is straight from the prestigious Vancouver Fairmont Hotel's chef and and place where I feel like a princess when sipping tea and savoring a fresh, warm scone. (Raisin Scones recipe, page 16, The Healing Powers of Tea)

At Victoria, I didn't have scones or need the "tearoom experience" as I tried to tell the restaurant servers--after all, I wrote the book on it!  (But I did enjoy cool, creamy homemade gelato and iced tea, found at a small indoor shop on a corner while strolling on the streets and talking to an elderly couple from the UK whom made me feel at home.) And, at the popular Fairmont tearoom on the island. I savored two cups of  white tea (it was calming and refreshing), a garden salad with heirloom tomatoes drizzled with an olive oil and vinegar dressing. Not to forget the semi-adventurous boat tour of The Gorge.  Note to self: Go on whale tour next time and experience swells and sea life. Funny, I was hoping for a few waves and choppy water but none happened--smooth sailing as was the flight to and from the island. (This surprised me since it was my fear to take the small CRJ700 but it was a nice flight, no cloud cover.)  We did see one sea creature, a few swimmers... the history of the water inlet was fascinating as was the guide, much like trying a new type of tea. Swimming each morning (the pool was all mine), followed by a soak in the adjoining hot tub, drinking bottled water--and tea day, afternoon, and nighttime was bliss. 
The island shuts down early, it was the most calming Canada trip I've taken and romantic memories linger when sipping a fave cup of tea. I happily share my tea tales of on the road and visiting tearooms, sipping teas--all types, and enjoying inspired travels that I recreated in recipes for both The Healing Powers of Tea and The Healing Powers of Honey.  

Wellness in a Cup—Discover the Benefits of Tea for Your Body and Mind!
It picks you up and calms you down, warms you and refreshes you. With black, white, red, green, and herbal varieties, there’s a tea for every taste, and now this time-honored superfood is trending as the drink of choice for health-conscious people of all ages and cultures.
Enjoy comforting and tea-licious recipes like Warm Scones with Jam and Devonshire Cream, Assorted Finger Sandwiches, Scrumptious White Tea Scallops, and Russian Tea Cookies paired with the perfect brew – hot or iced.
Better health isn't just a sip away. With The Healing Powers of Tea (sweetened with lively stories) you’ll learn the hottest tips to improve your health...
Paired with the new gift size book The Healing Powers of Honey, you'll have more recipes for scones, biscotti, tea cookies, and cooking scrumptious dishes like Honey Glazed Cornish Game Hens and Sweet Potato Pie, too!

Thursday, April 5, 2018

California Coast Earthquake--Intuitive-Author Sensed It Coming... Is It Over?

By Cal Orey
Today, at 12:29 p.m., breaking news greeted me and other folks in California. Channel Islands off Southern California was rocked by a newsworthy 5.3 earthquake, 30 miles from Santa Barbara--where a 6.8 happened there back in 1925. And the San Andreas isn't too far away... Tick-tock. Tick- tock. 

The other day, in Northern California I was finalizing my hotel arrangements with the Monterey-based manager...yes, on the coast of the Golden State. Ironically, we rehashed the earthshaking events after the San Francisco Earthquake of 1989. And, then, I asked the seasoned woman who gets California shakers, "If a quake hits when I'm there and tsunami follows will it reach my room?" She paused and answered, "Probably. We're just two blocks from the ocean." (Odd, how I asked for the third floor, huh?) Worse, she talked about the changes after the 9.0 Japan quake-tsunami and its effects on the California Coast. She saw it affect the coastline and boats.
And yeah, Santa Cruz to Monterey was affected by the '89 major earthquake and the 1906 great quake; not to forget the 6.2 in 1984 Morgan Hill strong shaker when I was living  and loving life in Santa Cruz Mountains and San Francisco not to forget Monterey...

Enter Gilroy, Geologist Jim Berkland
Another strange thing is haunting me...The late geologist Jim Berkland predicted the Loma Prieta earthquake and his forecast was printed in the Gilroy Dispatch four days before October 17, 1989. And not only did I pen the book about him and his fame for that...he was at Gilroy Barnes and Noble (for me)--and now that's where I'm headed in two weeks.  A coincidence? I believe things happen for a reason.  But I won't cancel. After all, I survived the 7.1, right? (Keep in mind, I forecasted a West Coast tsunami alert for 2018 and I work two psychic networks; tagged "top producer" and "four stars"... and I'm the quake sensitive News Segment guest on C2C AM.)
Every time I plan a getaway--often work-play--the weather or earthquakes seem to be a factor. A hurricane-force storm stopped my flight for a book signing in Anchorage and my predicted quake swarm in Southern California dunked a tea convention I was booked at in Long Beach. (On the day I was supposed to be there, beach goers were told to stay clear of the sea; one cruise ship wasn't allowed to dock.) This time around just wondering, "Will today's 5.3 offshore Southern California shaker trigger more earthquakes, perhaps on the big San Andreas? Perhaps. Yes, the quake gurus and I agree--it's possible more shaking may happen in the near future. (They say 1-20 odds in a few weeks; my "guides" tell me something related to this incident may hit California by summer.  But hey, the warning system is cool--about 30 seconds to get your ducks in a row.  It's better than nothing but what if I'm on the wharf? 

California Coast
I am going because I love award-winning Big Little Lies and second season won't air until 2019.  Because I'm booked at Gilroy's Barnes and Noble for a book discussion/signing. And most of all because I have a history with the California Coast.
After all, it's a breathtaking place chock-full of Mother Nature at her finest that I've gone with the favorite men in my life. Yep, romantic images come to mind. Eating dinner at an ex's home with a living room view of the Pacific Ocean. Another love and I drove to Monterey and enjoyed that 17 mile drive and sunning on the beaches. And the last one, the love of my life and the one who got away, well...Cannery Row strolls, munching on fish and chips and smelling the ocean air reminds me of  West Coast heaven. 

This time around the trip is for me. It will be a time to revisit the past. Living in Santa Cruz Mountains and visiting the coast was a frequent past-time. Going to the Garlic Festival, viewing fields of lettuce and artichokes, and enjoying coffeehouses (especially for the tea and honey with bagels) up and down California coastline brings back fond days and nights. Not to forget when I was a kid I swam and surfed in sea that I'm going to revisit.

Flashback to my freewheeling days living in San Jose, 30 miles from the coast.  One Easter break, I hitchhiked south to Big Sur, a place to go and fall in love with the great outdoors. Without a penny in my pocket and no hotel for me, I slept on the beach in a sleeping bag with my dog surrounded by no name strangers from places around the country. Under the stars and circled around the bonfire we'd share road tales trying to one up each other. Adventures like me being stranded in Colorado and told by a highway patrolman to walk out of the state because hitchhiking was prohibited  to the night I slept with one eye open, arms wrapped around my black Lab on a private property in the Mojave Desert (fearing snakes) got interest. I didn't drink alcohol that night on the beach, but I did savor tea--and was bullied for my clean lifestyle.  In the morning without a hangover and feeling rejuvenated, I left paradise and traveled north to return to real life--college with the goal of becoming an author...

Coming Home
Decades later, this time around, I'll be at the Barnes and Noble bookstore in Gilroy and dishing on my two latest books--The Healing Powers of Tea and The Healing Powers of Honey.  After it will be time to reconnect with Monterey and Pacific Grove (places John Steinbeck lived life and shared with his readers), bond with an otter, experience the sound of waves instead of looking at the Lake--and I'll watch the sun set over the sea and rise--instead of the majestic Sierra. So, who says you can't go back home? This Healing Powers series author is doing just that. 

Author Event, Author Signing, Author Discussion (Health & Fitness) 
Saturday April 21, 2018 2:00 PM 

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