beautiful downtown Julian
Beautiful downtown Julian

| We are creatures of habit. Last year we made a day jaunt to Julian, a charming little town in the mountains east of San Diego. So where did we go this year? Julian.

Last year we ate at Miners Diner. This year we ate at Miners Diner again, except this time we ate outdoors, in an alley where tables had been set up to allow for proper social distancing. Inside, the table in every other booth had been removed, as well. We pretty much had the alley to ourselves, except for the steady stream of people who came out to use the restrooms at the end of the alley.

masked diners
Now, what shall we have?
unmasked diners
French dip, chicken Caesar wrap, slaughterhouse burger
interior, Miners Diner
Inside counter of Miners Diner
Mom's pie house sign
The sign for Mom's Pie House, right across the street

Of course, we had to visit Mom's Pie House again. Of course we had dessert there last year. But this time we just drooled while Bob purchased three of the tarts in the window for our dessert on Saturday. It turns out that there is a whole, cored baked apple inside all that dough!

apple tarts
Apple tarts at Mom's Pie House

The one thing we did differently this year was to follow a new route. Last year I had simply told Sophie to take us to Julian and she did, but by the longest route possible. This year I Googled and found three other routes. We decided to go down to Palm Desert and take CA-74 up into the mountains. This was a good idea, except that there was road construction in several places so we had several rest stops while traffic was escorted in single file along the road.

As we came down the other side out of the mountains we discovered a whole new world of grasslands, herds of cows, and plenty of horse ranches. The town of Anza seems spread all over the place, but I had known "Anza" simply as part of "Anza Borrego." Who knew? And as we drew closer to yet more mountains, this world gave way to wineries lining the road. I sense another road trip with our tasting glasses in hand!

For the return, we intended to loop back through Hemet and Beaumont, thence home via the I-10. Now, we have been down in that area on three different trips and have had that same intention each time but always missed a turn somewhere and ended up practically at the coast. This time we realized that the key was to keep a sharp eye for Sage Road. Aha! On the map it looks tame enough, but in real life it is one sharp squiggly curve after another.

I don't know what the people do who live out there, but it must pay well — big houses and lots of horses and all the other accoutrements, like horse trailers.

All in all, it was a lovely day for an outing. Next week we plan to go back to Oak Glen. Earlier there were huge fires in the area but roads and businesses are supposedly now open again.

map to Julian
The way to Julian

Last updated on Oct 24, 2020

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