Reminders: 1. Posts are in chronological order with most recent on top. 2. Pictures can be enlarged by clicking on them and then using the back button (not close) to return to the text.
My niece Kimberly Carpender and her husband Jay Price have lived in San Diego for decades. I don’t remember when they bought their house, but I do know that they added solar to it ten years ago and paid the electric company $6 for the entire year 2011. Kim’s mom, Jane, my younger of two older sisters, was transferred from her home in Illinois to a care facility in S.D. when her dementia outran her ability to care for herself. She lingered for some time and died on January 2, 2011. I was glad to see that she reached 80 and her sister Ellen almost made it, because our mother died at 62. I flew back to New Jersey last April for Jane’s memorial service.
We found a great campground about 8 miles south of their home – A KOA that was, surprisingly, the best buy in the area. It was desirably landscaped, well organized and well-staffed, and there were facilities galore. It’s been a long time since we’ve been in a campground with this level of activity; we were surprised at how many families in the area came there to celebrate Thanksgiving. And they were in clusters, so big people were out in droves having parties as the littler ones took advantage of the playgrounds, courts and bike paths. They even had a coin-op dog wash!
We spent part of Tuesday and all of Wednesday with Kim and Jay. On Tuesday evening, we took them to dinner at Hob Nob Hill, an in-town restaurant they’d never been to but will willingly go back to – the meal was fantastic. On Wednesday, they took us about an hour north to their favorite vineyard, where we all sampled freely and free, thanks to their membership, and enjoyed a Kim-supplied gourmet picnic lunch. Thanksgiving was totally traditional; Kim’s kitchenry parallels her mother’s which, in turn, parallels my mother’s.
On Friday, the girls chugged off on a tour of the city, including Balboa Park and its treasured Marston Mansion and Gardens. The Mansion was built in 1905 for local merchant and philanthropist George White Marston and his wife in the Craftsman Prairie style. Furnishings reflect the early 20th century Arts and Crafts Movement. There are five acres of landscaping, including formal gardens, canyon gardens and planned cultural landscaping created as a gift to the Marstons in 1927. Dot was thrilled with it but took no pictures, so I borrowed the one at left from their website.
Well, that was the end of our almost two month excursion through California. It was finally time to head for Arizona and a well-earned hiatus from the road.