Labor Day weekend

Labor Day traditionally marks the end of summer. Years ago, it also marked the beginning of the slowing of the tourist traffic. Not any more. Tourists flock all year, unless the road closes due to fire, flood, or rocks and mud. Even then, they come.

It is also prime fire season, and the conditions are critical. Labor Day is often a time for backyard BBQs, I’ve been invited to one, but I will probably pass, due to traffic. Make sure you don’t bring your BBQ into our backyard. Big Sur just can’t handle another big fire again so soon after the Basin Complex. Keep your BBQ in town. Even our campgrounds, at least those in the national forest, and maybe all of them, do not allow campfires, or even stoves right now.

Have a wonderful long weekend, enjoy the beauty of our coast, but treat it as the fragile entity it is right now – with caution, awe, and respect. Have a good one. Maybe some photos over the long weekend.

Big Sur Summer

Memorial Day Weekend marks the beginning of the summer tourist season in Big Sur. But residents are “spoiled” by the closures experienced this past year. This weekend’s significant influx of visitors, while greatly appreciated, has brought many hospitality workers back to the reality of living and working here — the crowds that keep us alive.

“After a festive ribbon-cutting ceremony, visitors poured in Friday. Every Memorial Day weekend site was sold out in 90 minutes. Another 1,000 reservations have already been booked for the rest of summer,” reported the Monterey Herald.

Several of my visitor-serving friends were on overload on Saturday, dealing with the sudden rise in population here in Big Sur. They had been inundated. Usually, our hospitality industry gets a couple of dry runs before the big opening day, and workers have the opportunity to get ready for the flood of tourists. This could not happen this year, due to closures of the Los Padres National Forest and the State Parks essentially since June of last year. Now, we are on a fast track to catch up with lost revenues and to get used to the large crowds. We got spoiled, and we got lazy, without our visitors.

Welcome back, everyone. Let’s keep this a safe and sane (by Big Sur standards) summer.

(Just flew back last night and I have a lot to catch up on. Being “unplugged” for 16 days was great — no phones, no internet, no news. Will write about my adventures on slow “news” days in the coming weeks. Also looking to post another Random Big Sur Photo for identification soon.)