Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Labor Day Weekend

On Friday, I started the weekend by going to Mission Beach with my daughter and her children.  My daughter spotted a parking space on Mission Boulevard.  Finding a spot there was quite a coup.  For a Labor Day weekend, there weren't many people on the beach.  We had expected larger crowds.  More people did start coming around 3:00pm.  We enjoyed romping in the waves with the children.  The six year old was a little wary of the waves, but still had a good time.  My daughter spread a blanket and placed an umbrella in the middle.  After a while, we returned to sit on the blanket to eat a snack, while the six year old played in the sand along side.  Before I knew it, I was shooing flies with large wings.  At first, my daughter said there is nothing there, but then she did see them.  Since I was the only person they were landing on, I suspect that it was probably my pomegranate and mango soap that attracted them.  Lesson learned.  I didn't bring my camera so I missed the opportunity for photos of some Whimbrels, pecking through the sand.  After two hours, we left the beach, having thoroughly enjoyed the afternoon. 

On Saturday, after my grandson's soccer scrimmage, we left for Los Angeles to visit the cousins.  We enjoyed spotting the "monster" in the clouds as we traveled north up the "5".  Traffic wasn't bad at all, except for the toll booth area.   My daughter was wondering why the cars paying the toll were held up.  Then, we noticed that the toll for the "73" had risen to $5.75.  Some of the drivers were probably unprepared for the rise in the cost, slowing everyone down.  The visit with the cousins was, of course, very enjoyable as it always is.

We returned on Sunday morning with some sporadic tie ups.  My daughter chose to skip the toll and bypass the "73".  I dislike driving the 405 all the way to where it joins the "5".  The traffic at that point can be an absolute "bear", at least in my opinion.  I do not enjoy bumper-to-bumper traffic.  This morning, however, we didn't have any problem.  That afternoon, I went with a friend for a late lunch at Sammy's Woodfired Pizza at Liberty Station in Point Loma to celebrate our birthdays.  The atmosphere at this restaurant is always enjoyable.  We both ordered from the "Tapas" section of the menu.  I ordered a the "crab and shrimp with flat bread" (I highly recommend this) and Marge chose the "Oak roasted asparagus with prosciutto."   I tasted one of spears....very tasty.  Since we were celebrating our birthdays, the waiter offered us a special desert.  We both declined.  It would have tasted great, but common sense won out.  We still shared in laughter and I did a lot more talking than my friend.  She's a great listener.   It was another great day.

Yesterday, I went to Balboa Park to see if there were any migrating butterflies.  A young man attending one of the bird tours at the Famosa Slough last spring spoke glowingly about many butterflies in the Rose Garden.  There were no butterflies, but many rose bushes in this garden.  My photos don't do them justice.  One variety of rose was prettier than the other.

Balboa Park Rose Garden

After looking at the roses, I walked to Balboa Park's Koi Pond.  It is located by the Botanical Building and is a favorite of many.   As I left the Park, I noticed a number of children in the Bea Evenson Fountain.  It was very hot yesterday.
Bea Evenson Fountain
 On my way home, I went to the Famosa Slough, where I saw the Osprey perched on the telephone pole.  Several times in the past two weeks, I've seen a "host" of sparrows.  Actually, I've been unable to discern exactly what amount of sparrows constitutes a "host."  All summer, I would hear them in the bushes and if they were not in bushes they would quickly get into one as I came near.  This made it quite difficult to see what kind of sparrow it was.   Now, they are collectively out in the open which makes me think that they are preparing to migrate.  Visiting Balboa Park and the Famosa Slough was a perfect way to finish my Labor Day weekend.

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