Tuesday, September 27, 2011

To California and Back with Vera

Vacations are wonderful.  Seeing family is wonderful.  Seeing new places is delightful.  So here is a bit of the saga of To California and Back with Vera.

On Friday, September 16 I boarded a Delta to Atlanta around 6:30 a.m.  It was loaded with humanity.  Those who look you in the eye and smile.  Those who are indifferent to your existence and look right through you.  Those who look searchingly in the rows of seats from side to side as though they don't know if there will be a place for them to perch during the flight while they clutch a "pass" that says they actually do have a seat.  There are folk who somehow have slipped two large pieces of luggage on board as carry on luggage and they actually seem intent on resizing the overhead bins.

Finally, all are seated, the lights dim and the captain's voice welcomes you and almost says, "Come on folks, let's get this show on the road (oops!  in the air)."

About nine hours later I land in San Francisco after a brief layover in Atlanta.  Family meets me and we exchange long overdue hugs and head down the road to the salad bowl of America, Watsonville, CA and environs.  The next day we attend a county fair in the Watsonville area and have "fair food," see the ponies, cows, and chickens, ride the rides, and waft our way through the masses of humanity.

Then I visit family in Monterey, CA, home of many branches of the military, a magnificent aquarium, Cannery Row (of Steinbeck fame), and breathtaking vistas.

Being sure to get a bit of history into this trip, we went by the Carmel Mission where the first padres brought Catholism to the Indians.
We also visited the now closed Fort Ord which played a major role in training our military along the West coast of this country during previous wars. It was established in 1917.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fort_Ord  Deserted army barracks and firing ranges along the beach where live ammunition was utilized to give realism to soldiers who would soon be actually fighting for their lives and for the security of our Freedom.

After several lovely days with family (did I mention my four lovely granddaughters?) in Monterey, I went to San Francisco to be with more family (and another lovely granddaughter - this one has curly red hair).  We only had about two days together, but we enjoyed our time immensely.  We visited the Exploratorium of San Francisco and saw wonderful vistas of fish, swamps, a planetarium presentation, and so many opportunities to explore that simply boggle the mind.

Delightful food and wonderful company.  Tightening the ties of love that bind us together as family.  Exploring and delighting in each other as three generations experience the day to day emotions and activities of living.  Ten days later I get aboard another Delta, lay over in Detroit, and return to North Carolina about 10 hours later.  A tired, but satisfied individual who has experienced a vacation, beautiful sights and adventurous places, and strengthened the tie of family within three generations.

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