Monday, October 31, 2016

31st October 2016......short road trip east!!!

Said my earnest thanks and goodbye's to Stella and was on the road by 10.30 am for a short(for me) drive to Palm desert...
It was all Interstate driving and this is my last glimpse of the ocean this year!!

I skirted around the outside of the big city...
but still many lanes of fast moving vehicles!!

Now you know where you fresh morning orange juice comes from!!
Lovely cloud formations over the mountains!!

Turbine country!!

330 km later I was at my destination for the one night this is not airbnb but done through Booking.com as I had an issue with my credit card long story not worth telling but should be rectified in a few days!!

This I think is an old Motel converted to a very nice 12 room B & B...
Very clean and spacious rooms with full kitchen..
even a private patio..
I had a nice dip in the salt water pool...


A really great place to relax for the evening!!

The route today to Palm Desert!!

Caron sent me these photos this morning and they are much better than mine!!


In the shot above left to right.....John, who is Caron's husband, Ashley, a sort of intelligent looking me, Stella in front of me and then Pauline, Ashley's Mum...then sitting right to left is Corning , Ashley's Dad and then Berlin and Michael, boy and girl friend and Michael is one of Caron's sons!!
and that is Caron next to me......they are an awesome family!!!

Happy and safe Halloween evening!!

Yashi Kochi!!

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Sunday October 30th 2016...Birthday girl!!!

Well who would believe it rained and rained all night...

You cannot tell from this but it is pouring...


the lyrics tells all!!!


Got on a board a west bound 747
Didn't think before deciding what to do
All that talk of opportunities, TV breaks and movies
Rang true, sure rang true.
Seems it never rains in Southern California
Seems I've often heard that kind of talk before
It never rains in California
But girl, don't they warn ya
It pours man it pours.
Out of work, I'm out of my head
Out of self respect I'm out of bread
I'm under loved I'm under fed
I wanna go home
It never rains in California
But girl don't they warn ya, it pours, man it pours.
Will you tell the folks back home I nearly made it
Had offers but don't know which one to take......

Everyone is so happy because they so need the moisture!!!

So Stella spent most of the day in the kitchen and produced a magnificent looking table and  food delicious!!!



What a lovely family gathering that I was proud and honored to be a part of...enjoy the photos and know Ashley had a wonderful Birthday celebration!!!!

Sorry to report that most of my shots did not turn out and the ones that did are not in focus!!!



Stella, Ashley, Pauline Ashley's Mum and Caron!!!






What a lovely charming and incredible young woman!!!!

It was as we English say a smashing party...everything from food to company was the best!!!!
Thank you for letting me share the celebration......

Sadly tomorrow I am back on the road and heading to Tucson to visit with Linda I am stopping in the Palm Springs area tomorrow night so stay tuned!!
Yashi Kochi!!!

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Saturday 29th October 2016.....even in Sunny Southern California....

Saturday mornings are soccer mornings and this was no exception I was up just after 7.00 am to watch a lively soccer game from England...always a nice way to start the day especially when tea and some light breakfast is involved.......

Stella and I did some chores around the house and then went out to do some grocery shopping and have lunch.

Tomorrow is going to be a special day as Stella and her family are having a Birthday dinner for Ashley's 17th Birthday and it is at Stella's house, hence the groceries as Stella is going to cook dinner for 11 family members.

Just a little background information Ashley is Stella's grand daughter and she is the tennis star who is now enrolled in the prestigious Pepperdine College in Malibu with a full scholarship and she just turned 17 last Wednesday.
Ashley was invited to the Junior US Open last month and made it from qualifying all the way to the last 16...this girl is going places!!





.......I have know Ashley for over  5 years and look forward to seeing her tomorrow!!

Back at the house when Stella finally let me go from my chores I first walked into town to see the local Mexican population celebrating the Day of the Dead Parade...



 They sure know how to have a parade and have fun!!
 She is lovely!!
 I then turned back and walked here which is only 300 yards from Stella's house!!

 Even though the sun had given way to clouds it was still warm and I always enjoy a beach walk!!





I did not get back to almost 7.30 pm and Stella had prepared a light supper and the evening was spent looking at old photos and watching some election coverage!!!!

have a great and safe and healthy weekend..

Yashi Kochi!!!

Friday, October 28, 2016

Friday 28th October 2016.......well I ended the drought!!!!

It rained quite hard most of the night and everyone is thrilled about it as the last rainfall was many months ago....but when I got up the rain had stopped and the clouds moved away and the sun came out and the rest of the day was quite lovely......
Stella and i spent a quiet morning before going into town for a lat breakfast and then it was back to the tennis club.....this time I was invited to join a group and I played three one set matches with different partners and it was so good to be back on the courts.....hit the hot tub afterwards ....

I do not know where the day went but it was soon 8 pm and I took Stella out for dinner to my favorite restaurant here...it is unusual and I have never seen a restaurant like it anywhere else.....

You order your meat, lamb, chicken good steaks and it is brought to your table uncooked!!!!!

There is a large coal fed BBQ in the center of the room and you cook your own meat!!!  Just before it is ready you help yourself to salad, bread, beans and baked potato..what a neat concept and if you do not want to cook your own they will cook it for you..it was delicious!!!





Please do not be offended by this!!!!


A MESSAGE FROM THE QUEEN  

To the citizens of the United States of America, from Her Sovereign Majesty Queen Elizabeth II:

In light of your failure to nominate competent candidates for President of the USA, and thus to govern yourselves, we hereby give notice of the revocation of your independence, effective immediately.  
Her Sovereign Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, will resume monarchical duties over all states, commonwealths, and territories (except North Dakota, which she does not fancy).  
Our new Prime Minister, Theresa May, will appoint a Governor for America without the need for further elections.   Congress  and the Senate will be disbanded; a questionnaire may be circulated next year to determine whether any of you noticed.  

To aid in the transition to a British Crown dependency, the following rules are introduced with immediate effect:  

1. The letter 'U' will be reinstated in words such as 'colour,' 'favour,' 'labour' and 'neighbour.'  Likewise, you will learn to spell 'doughnut' without skipping half the letters, and the suffix '-ize' will be replaced by the suffix '-ise.'  Generally, you  will be expected to raise your vocabulary to acceptable levels. (look up 'vocabulary').  

2. Using the same twenty-seven words interspersed with filler noises such as 'like' and 'you know' is an unacceptable and inefficient form of communication. There is no such thing as U.S. English.  We will let Microsoft know on your behalf.  The Microsoft spell-checker  will be adjusted to take into account the reinstated letter 'u'' and the elimination of '-ize.'  

3.  July 4th will no longer be celebrated as a holiday.  

4.  You will learn to resolve personal issues without using guns, lawyers, or therapists.  The fact that you need so many lawyers and therapists shows that you're not quite ready to be independent.  Guns should only be used for shooting grouse.   If you can't  sort things out without suing someone or speaking to a therapist, then you're not ready to shoot grouse.  

5.  Therefore, you will no longer be allowed to own or carry anything more dangerous than a vegetable peeler, although a permit will be required if you wish to carry a vegetable peeler in public.  

6.  All intersections will be replaced with roundabouts, and you will start driving on the left side with immediate effect.  At the same time, you will go metric with immediate effect and without the benefit of conversion tables.  Both roundabouts and metrication  will help you understand the British sense of humour.  

7.  The former USA will adopt UK prices on petrol (which you have been calling gasoline) of roughly $10/US gallon.  Get used to it.  

8.  You will learn to make real chips.  Those things you call French fries are not real chips, and those things you insist on calling potato chips are properly called crisps.   Real chips are thick cut, fried in animal fat, and dressed  not with catsup but with vinegar.  

9.  The cold, tasteless stuff you insist on calling beer is not actually beer at all.  Henceforth, only proper British Bitter will be referred to as beer, and European brews of known and accepted provenance will be referred to as Lager.  South African beer is also acceptable, as they are pound-for-pound the greatest sporting nation on earth, and it can only be due to the beer.  They are also part of the British Commonwealth -- see what it did for them?  American brands will be referred to as Near-Frozen Gnat's Urine, so that all can be sold without risk of further confusion.  

10.  Hollywood will be required occasionally to cast English actors as good guys.  Hollywood will also be required to cast English actors to play English characters.  Watching Andie Macdowell attempt English dialect in Four Weddings and a Funeral was an experience akin to having one's ears removed with a cheese grater.  

11.  You will cease playing American football.  There is only one kind of proper football; you call it soccer. Those of you brave enough will, in time, be allowed to play rugby (which has some similarities to American football, but does not involve stopping  for a rest every twenty seconds or wearing full kevlar body armour like a bunch of nancies).  

12.  Further, you will stop playing baseball.  It is not reasonable to host an event called the World Series for a game which is not played outside of America.  Since only 2.1% of you are aware there is a world beyond your borders, your error is understandable.   You will learn cricket, and we will let you face the South Africans first to take the sting out of their deliveries.  

13.  You must tell us who killed JFK.  It's been driving us mad.  

14.  An agent from Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (i.e., tax collector) will be with you shortly, to ensure the acquisition of all monies due (backdated to 1776).  

15.  Daily Tea Time begins promptly at 4 p.m. with proper cups, with saucers, and never mugs, with high quality biscuits (which you incorrectly call "cookies") and cakes, plus strawberries (with cream) when in season.  


God Save the Queen!  

Yashi Kochi!! 

Friday 28th October 2016.......a day late!!!

It was nice to wake up and be warm and it was also nice to wake up and have a wonderful portion of omelette that Caron made!!

We were out of the house before 9 am as we had a tennis match lined up......this I have been looking forward to!!!

The club and grounds are immaculate...




Beautiful pool area


and the landscaping is divine.....




Caron, Stella and another lady named Alice and myself played almost two hours of really good competitive tennis....this is a shot of the losers!!!


And the winners!!!


It was a fantastic way to start the day......and these three ladies were amazing players!!!



Afterwards Stella and I lounged about in here!!!


Just what the old body needed!!!

Stella and I then took an afternoon drive up the coast to Ventura where we had a lovely late lunch and then went to a movie.....it was in a new theater and these are the seats


so comfy. The chairs recline with head rests!!!..

The show was a new release called Denial based on a true story about the Holocaust...it was brilliantly directed and acted a show worth seeing!!

We took a stroll around the down town area which is vibrant, clean and fun!!!!

I did not know that this area of the State has been in a long drought for at least a few years so everyone is thrilled that rain is in the forecast for tomorrow heavy showers...so I should not complain and as I write the rain is tumbling down!!!

There were Internet issues at the house so hence the late post!!!


Yashi Kochi!!!

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Wednesday 26th October 2016....the melting butter test!!!!

G & W treated me to a lovely breakfast at the restaurant in their huge complex and it was good and a great start to the day....we then called June on What's app, I don't know what that is but it enabled us to see and speak to June who is in England and the 4 of us talked about a year ago when we on the cruise..modern technology!!!

I said my fond farewell and thank you and was on the road by 10 am and it was sunny and warm.....a driving day of another 700 km but mainly on the Interstate which was quite boring...I did see this van and it reminded of the Juicy car rental I had in New Zealand!


I turned inland and joined the 101 highway down the coast but this was really the only view of the ocean I could get from the car!!

It was a good drive and I arrived at 5.30 pm!!

So what is the butter test??

When I had the RV the snowbirds that came down from the north always judged the weather and when they were in the sun belt if the butter left out would melt.....so today it would so out come the shorts again I am happy to say.

About 15 years ago in Puerto Penasco, a sleepy Mexican town close the the Arizona border I met Stella and her daughter Caron and Caron's two boys....we became really good friends that kind of friendship when you don't see each other for a year but when you do you fall right back into the mix and so it is with these two beautiful ladies and of course you all know that Stella is Ashley's Granny!!!

So I arrived at Caron and John's house and Stella was there and I was just in time for a delicious dinner, my timing was perfect!!

It was wonderful catching up again but we were all a bit tired so an early night as tomorrow I have the pleasure of playing tennis with Stella, Caron and another lady I have not met before...I look forward to that event!!!
Stay tuned!!

The journey today!!


Yashi Kochi!!!

Friday 22nd September 2017...I could

show you a photo but I won't of my dirty, bruised and bloodied fingers after I did something today I have never done before!!! Yes I ...