Carolina: Cruising Past 70: OLA: Driving Down the West Coast!

Monday, March 18, 2013

OLA: Driving Down the West Coast!

Beautiful Mount Shasta at the Break of Spring!
Bill's birthday on March 10 at Red Robin
It was the height of winter when we arrived in Seattle, Washington, home of my eldest daughter Trisha and husband Deejay last January 8. We had stored the RV at the TT Soledad Canyon Resort in Acton, California.  And now, we are back at camp, from winter to spring, from the low 50s to the high 60s, from the very social driven lifestyle back to our tranquil, cruising one!

Trisha's birthday with a Filipino Feast at home on Mar 12
Krishna on her March 1 birthday
One of the activities we had in Seattle was a Mexican dinner for the birthday of  Paolo, husband of Darlyn, Deejay's sister. But the big celebration was the five-in-the-city birthday on March 3 during the family reunion when April joined us from England and Claudine and family from Calgary. April's birthday will be on March 31 and Claudine's was on February 7. But we also had special day dinners for Krishna on March 1, Bill on March 10, and Trisha on March 12.

We had planned to leave right after April departed but could not because of final dental, eye, and family doctor’s appointments.  \Thus we were able to watch Yeye win her varsity tennis match and wait for the results of Krishna’s cosmetology state board exams (which she easily passed)!

Yeye's winning form in her varsity tennis match!
the colors of spring along I-5!
After all the delays, we are finally back at camp in
Acton which is almost an hour from Los Angeles. Our drive South took us 7 ½ hours on I-5 from Seattle to our first stop in Medford, Oregon. But now, instead of the view out of our car windshield being glaciated brown foothills, everything has started to turn brighter greens and yellows. What an amazing switch of the seasons. When we crossed over to California the next day, Mount Shasta greeted us with a smile! 

Cherry, Zan and I at the Westfield Solano Mall
We took a little diversion and drove 4 1.2 hours to Fairfield, California for the chance to visit with my sister Cherry and her daughter Zan. A Pinoy lunch of arroz caldo, fresh lumpia, and Bicol Express from the Inay Restaurant inside the Westfield Solano Mall satisfied us. Cherry teaches 3-5 year-old kids ballet at the Fairfield Community Center, 25 minutes from her home with husband Rick in Vallejo. Then we had coffee, tea, and dessert at Starbucks just outside the mall. I was so glad to have been able to hug my sister and niece after over 2 years!

Cherry, Bill, and Zan at Starbucks in Fairfield, Calfornia
Alvin, Patrick, and Diane with Bill and me
at Pietro's in Lodi, California
At 4:30 PM we drove east to Lodi, California to visit Deejay’s sister Diane, her husband Alvin, and their delightful 1 ½ year-old Patrick. The super gracious hostess that Diane is, wine and aperitif was waiting for us! Patrick animatedly took to our ‘pasalubong’, a talking and singing Ernie. Then we trooped to Pietro’s, a fine Italian restaurant, with huge herb gardens in front, for clam spaghetti, spaghetti with meatballs, spaghetti carbonara, and veal saltimboca. By 8:30 pm we were back at their lovely home for coffee and a little tour. As we were about to leave, Patrick refused to let me go! That felt so good and I just know I will miss him.

delightful Patrick!
We stayed at a Stockton motel just 20 minutes from Lodi, right on the freeway so that we could get an early start on our journey, another 4 ½ hours to Acton. Arriving there in the early afternoon, we took the RV from storage and found our spot. We allowed ourselves just one day to prepare for our moving on to Palm Springs to spend the start of spring for 2 weeks. After Mass we had barbecued chicken being sold outside the church for a fundraiser for St. Mary's Catholic School.  Then we headed to the grocery store to stock up on a few supplies since our refrigerator was empty!

home sweet home!
Yes, we are definitely back to our cruising lifestyle with simple meals, relative quiet, and each other!