Tuesday, October 29, 2013

While We (Humans, Cat, Dog) Were Away….

About mid-way through the morning of Saturday, October 12, I loaded the cat and the dog and their luggage into the car and drove them to our friend’s house, who had agreed to keep them for the 2 weeks we were going to be on our vacation. I had toyed (very briefly) with the idea of taking Molly Wolly Doodle with us, but discarded the idea, not the least reason being our little Toyota was simply going to be too small to carry her, the crate, the ice chest….

I did some more last minute stuff on the computer for work and spent nearly an hour trying to write about the significance of Sunday, October 13. We were leaving for Los Angeles on October 13, I started writing the blog on October 13, 2004 (9 years ago), and my mother died on October 13, 2009 (4 years ago). 9 + 4 = 13. October 13. I finally gave up trying to write anything coherent and resumed getting ready for the trip.

We drove… and drove… and drove… basically following the same route as the old Route 66 and arrived at my home town, at the edge of Los Angeles, a couple of days later, rather aching and sore, but without mishap, except for the fight we got into with our GPS device, which tried to route us through downtown Los Angeles instead of the way we usually go.

The weather was perfect, as only Southern California can be at the end of October.

Transplants from Hawaii bloom happily in the back yard...

spreading their lovely fragrance.

Lots of coming and going and lively conversation…

My sister took me to the beach.

Richard helped my sister’s husband work on the old truck he is restoring…

We went shopping with my older brother at the Japanese market and bought ingredients for a huge pot of sukiyaki, something our mother made frequently. I chopped lots of vegetables and cooked the food...
and we ate every last bit of it.

Richard met up with his high school friend from Seattle, and they went to the Santa Monica pier...
where the old Route 66 ends.

While they were doing that, I took my dad to the sidewalk park on a hill that overlooks the runways at Los Angeles International Airport...
and we spent an enjoyable couple of hours watching the planes land and take off.

Saturday there was a combined birthday party for my niece and myself. 
Our birthdays are 4 days apart.

  I had a lovely visit with my friend from high school. 
 A good time was had by all…

Sunday we cruised to the ocean in one of my brother-in-law’s restored cars and found ourselves at a kite-flying festival.
This brought back memories of the kite-flying contest sponsored by the Parks and Recreation Department that my dad and I entered. We used the crosspieces from an old kite and tissue paper that I decorated with tempera colors and a sponge. Our little kite was rather simple one compared with the fancy ones on either side, but it shot up into the air like a rocket and we won the contest. The kites at this festival, some 50 years later, were quite amazing.

Monday we visited Richard's sister (she wouldn't let us take a picture though), had a little pot luck for dinner with my brother and his wife, and then a riotous game of Kings in the Corner erupted after dinner when my sister and her husband came to say goodbye.. 
We whooped and hollered and some of us tried to cheat, and it was wonderful.

Tuesday morning I gave my father, who will be 89 in about 2 weeks, a hug goodbye and we headed off to a convention in Las Vegas.

The weather in Las Vegas in late October is nearly perfect. It is possible to take a walk around the block and not feel like one is walking in a furnace. We had two wonderful meals at the Coco’s Restaurant, which was around the corner from the motel.

But we also spent a miserable hour or so trying to get into the Flamingo Casino to see the wildlife habitat and nearly got stuck going round and round in the Caesar’s Palace parking garage before we figured out how to get out of there….

We were happy to leave Las Vegas and spent the evening of my actual birthday in Gallup, New Mexico, listening to the familiar sound of rumbling trains passing in the night.

...The Rats Will Play

A little while after we arrived home Saturday afternoon we became aware that things were not quite all right.

I immediately noticed something was wrong when I sat down at my computer and saw that the beautiful Hercules beetle I had found dead on the walking pathway at the end of the summer in the park was missing.

Then I noticed that the jute twine that had I used to attach my scissors to a nail on the shelf next to my work space (to keep them from wondering off) had been cut and was gone. My scissors were no longer attached to anything.

Sunday afternoon while I was cooking dinner I suddenly realized that the Mexican pottery dish my Aunt Betty brought back from Mexico a very long time ago was empty.
When we left, it was full of dried red chili peppers. They were gone.

Richard found rat paw prints in the dust in his office.

We are not sure what else might be missing. Perhaps if we can locate its nest, we will find some of our missing items.

It was good to go away and it was very good to come home.

1 comment:

Far Side of Fifty said...

Sounds like a wonderful vacation! Sunny and warm! Pack rats sound horrid, I hope you chase them out! :)