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Category Archives: California

Sometimes the Short Trips are the Best

Libby, me and Tiny Tina headed out on a great trip today…25 steps to our garden.  It was Summer harvest time.  A couple hundred of red and green peppers(Serranoes and Jalapeños), a dozen of Vidalia Onions, 100+ tomatoes of all size and kinds.  Headed into the house an made a big dish of salsa.  We then heated up some tamales and loaded them up with the salsa.  So good.

Then to the neighbors with some of fresh vegetables and froze enough whole peppers for the rest of the year.  Oh yes, for lunch, fresh sliced tomatoes.  Great day of fresh vegetable on all of our meals.

Excellent trip, not far but so tasty.

 

 
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Posted by on August 19, 2017 in California, Garden, Uncategorized

 

Epilogue 2…Driving Across the United States…2017

20170616_100915We are one of the few people in the world who have a Father who in a couple months will turn 100.  He enjoys visitors more than just about anything and that is the main reason we headed on this driving trip.  We had a good time with him, the brothers and sister, the nephews and nieces and even the great nephews and nieces.  Really good visit.

One of the things we noticed on this trip was that cost of food on the road.  First the good news.  No one comes even close to the cost of California.  Where has the price of eating out on the road gone up the most from our last trips?  North Dakota and Montana.  Could it be the money coming into those states from the energy business?

Service at the businesses we used on the road were exceptional.  Hotels, restaurants and every other place, the people were friendly,  helpful and very were happy with how things are going for them at home and work.  Funny…so different from what you hear on the cable news channels. 

20170616_163314Finally a very interesting story from this trip.  Our favorite restaurant for years on our trips is without a doubt is the Cracker Barrel. We have eaten at them all over the United States(three times this trip)  Never ate at one in California because there isn’t one.  Here is why.  Talking to a person directly involved in getting their first Cracker Barrel in California here is what is happening. 

Eight years ago, the company decided to try again in opening their first California restaurant this time in Victorville.  Great location on the 15 highway.  It is due to open maybe, hopefully, possibly by the end of this year.  Every thing that you can imagine to slow down a business from opening in a state was thrown in against the company.  They have finally broken ground and are going to stick with it to the bloody end. Sad isn’t it?

Finally, the trip is done but our memories about the experience will last as long as we are around. 

 
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Posted by on June 28, 2017 in California, Montana, North Dakota

 

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Epilogue Part 1…Driving Across the United States 2017

We are home.  After 14 days of driving across 11 states…mostly western and mid-western states…we have many thoughts of who the United States is and changed in the past eight years when we took the same drive.  Our experiences are about simple things that we observed.. 

Infrastructure improvement is exploding across the West especially the upper mid-west.  Roads, hospitals, airports, colleges, and bridges.  North Dakota looks to using their windfall of taxes from their oil/gas bonanza to rebuild their state from scratch.  Montana seems to be right behind them.  The rest of the country should thank North Dakota, Montana, Wyoming, Texas and Oklahoma for all of the wealth they are providing the rest of the country.

The gas prices were an eye opener, $1.99 in Minnesota to $3.51 in California.  Looks like the far west state governments are taxing the heck out of their residents who use gasoline.

By the way, if you can, never drive through Denver or Las Vegas.  Horrible traffic any time of the day.  Matches Los Angeles or San Diego. 

The good news is that gas mileage on cars have improved dramatically in the past eight years.  We averaged over over 33 miles per gallon with the Honda CRV driving the speed limited.  One thing I noticed this trip was the impact driving into a 20 mph head wind has on your gas mileage.  Drops it from 33 to 25 mpg.  When are the car company engineers going to improve the aerodynamics of our vehicles?

Part 2 tomorrow on the food, service, hotels and family.

 

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The Day Before the Trip…June 2017

June 12, 2017, Monday, 0510

Altimeter Reading – 2733

High Desert Foothills in Palmdale CA

Miles today N/A , Mileage Gas prices $2.79(Costco),

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The sun is just coming up in a very cool 46 degree morning in the Antelope Valley.  Crazy to be wearing a long sleeve shirt and thick workout pants when the weather by this weekend is predicted to be 109.

Buy day today.  Bringing the Honda into the car wash for a wash, wax and interior cleanup.  Libby tells me I am a bit off as in two hours after take off tomorrow it will be covered with bugs and road grim anyway but, it is just my way.

Meeting with the folks who are watching our house and our animals while we are gone.  Setting up protections etc. 

Major packing will occur and final clean up around here will be done.  Getting the ice and filling the car with gas later this evening

Getting excited. 

 
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Posted by on June 12, 2017 in California, Driving, gas prices

 

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Planning Two More Trips This Year(2017)

With our next trip fully planned, a 14 day driving jaunt of 4000 miles that covers thirteen states, I have been planning two more trips.  One a 9-day cross country visit to the Washington D.C. area and a four day 100th birthday party trip for my Dad in Minnesota. 

Washington D.C. Trip

Image result for photo washington mallWe decided to stay in the United States this year as the flights to Europe are such a pain.  If I could afford first class air fare, things wouldn’t be so painful but, the cost for this addition doubles the price of the trip.  What a pain. 

So instead, we decided to head to the center of our Federal Government, Washington D.C..  This will be our third trip there but we feel we have barely scratched the surface of the things to see. 

This trip will be very different from prior trips.  We will not have a car.  We will be using Uber, We rented a one bedroom apartment in the suburbs within walking distance of supermarkets, restaurants and the train system that will take us directly into Washington, D.C. within in 20 minutes.  The cost of of our apartment is 1/2 or less than a hotel in D.C., we will be saving a chunk of $$$$ on food with our own kitchen and no rental car or parking costs.  This is how we do it on our trips to Europe so we figured we might as well see how it works here the United States.

100th Birthday Party(Minnesota)

20170429_121009We will be making our third trip this year to Minnesota, this time for Dad’s 100th birthday.  Four days with our daughter, we traveled there with our son earlier this year,

The cost for airfare to Minnesota is more than to Washington D.C.. Plus, renting a car is key as we must drive 100+ miles to the small farm town where Dad lives. 

We are all looking forward to this trip as we are expected see a good part of the community who are always supportive to family and friends. 

More later. 

 

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Day Four, Trip to San Diego(#3 2017) Headed for Home

5/22/2017 Monday

Loaded up the car, stopped for breakfast at our favorite breakfast restaurant the, Waffle Spot, and filled with gas at Costco.  Decent drive home and arrived at 1130 am.  Good warm up trip for the 14 day trip coming up soon. 

 
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Posted by on May 23, 2017 in California, Driving

 

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Great Fishing and Baseball…Terrible Public Transport Experience, Day 3, San Diego

 

May 20, 2017, Saturday

The weather was spectacular out on the pier in the morning.  Ten MPH breeze with a clear blue skies and 75 temperature.  No fish but what a great two hours surrounded by ocean and perfect weather.  PS. Not a fish to be had. 

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Had a quiet mid day and even a nap.  We then had a uneventful ride on the San Diego Transportation System to the the Padres stadium for $1.50 each way for seniors($2.50 for the rest of the riders).  The Padres are a terrible team, worst in all of baseball but the stadium and food are good. 

Where things went wrong was the ride home. 

20170520_200417Someone forgot there was a Padres game with 25,000 people many who rode the public transportation to the game.  The train came 40 minutes late to pick up the riders. The crush of riders was so great that even handicapped people had no seats.  The worst was the drunks and stoners who were so loud and used obscene language that people were not feeling safe and the many children on the train were wide-eyed.  That was two straight occurrences of this kind of activity I have experiences on the public transportation in San Diego. 

I must say that it is as bad or worse than New York City underground. European public transport much better.  One of the few complaints I have about San Diego. 

Overall a great day and as often happen, traveling reminds you how nice your home is.

 

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