Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Beacon NY

Congratulations to Beacon NY for being selected as No. 8 in the "Editor's Favorite Trips of 2014" on the Conde Nast Traveler's website.  Beacon is a very interesting town.  When I visit the family, I've taken many an enjoyable walk through various areas there.


On the Hudson River side of the station, you can walk to Long Dock Park and follow the trails for a nice 'woodsy' walk.  South of the city, off Route 9D, is Madame Brett Park.  While the area is very rustic, it's a great easy hike.  The waterfalls are very pretty and the ruins of two factories are very interesting.  One made hats and the other, buttons.  As you walk the paths, you can see some small piles of buttons on the ground.
Madame Brett Park, Beacon NY




With a short walk from the Metro North train station, you can visit the Dia Beacon Museum.  This museum is very popular with locals and visitors who take the train from New York City.  In the business section of the town, you will see a number of restaurants, gallery and shops.  I especially enjoyed my visit to Hudson Beach Glass, where my grandchildren created their own Christmas decorations.  It was fun for me.  It was an education opportunity for the grandchildren.

  During my last visit to New York, my friend, Katie, and I had lunch at the Beacon Falls Cafe on Main Street.  The restaurant is small and was very crowded.  We were advised of a wait and visited a 'Penny Social' at the American Legion Hall, just a short walk down the street.  Katie had never attended one before.  After this, we returned to the restaurant and discovered we were still on the waiting list.  When we were finally seated, our meal was very enjoyable.  I would definitely recommend this restaurant.

I was disappointed about not being able to climb Mt. Beacon during the past two trips to New York.  Last June, I was too busy with other things.  When I finally made arrangements with my grandson, we had a week of rain.  It was also the last week of my visit.  One of my previous climbs was up a rock-bed creek along side a waterfall in the mountain.  It was a little slippery.  So, I now prefer my climb to be on dry ground.  When I came to New York in November, I was happy to see that since the weather was clear, I could possibly go up Mt. Beacon when my grandson had time.  Because he was busy, the first available opportunity was Thanksgiving Day.  Then, 8 to 10 inches of snow the day before dashed my plans.

If you do decided to hike Mt. Beacon, you can see the following scenes.


Most hikers take the stairs near the ruins of an incline railway and continue on.  I take the fire road.  At the top are ruins of a casino and hotel of the 1920's.  I have yet to see this.  My grandson who knows the mountain, led me to the top of the fire road past the reservoir.  The stone monument was erected by the Daughters of the American in 1900 to commemorate the burning of signal fires during the Revolutionary War.  The scenery is beautiful, but I am curious about the casino and hotel.  Perhaps next summer.

Beacon offers a great day's visit.  Add it to your calendar.

     

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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

New York Visit


This year's New York trip seemed to speed by.  The morning after I arrived, my daughter drove me a Healing Service held by Father Ralph DiOrio.  I didn't need healing but knew that God's blessing is always showered on people who attend these services, which are held once a month.  I am so grateful to have attended.  I recommend that you consider going. You will certainly be blessed.  Father DiOrio's website is http://www.rdohealingministry.org/

As the pictures show, we had a big storm on the day before Thanksgiving Day.  In LaGrangeville NY, we endured about 10 inches.  I could not believe I actually experienced feelings of  'Cabin Fever.'  I couldn't wait for the driveway to be plowed.  A nice apologetic young man came to the door about 12:30am and quickly cleared the snow from the sidewalk and driveway.  I was very grateful. Thanks to this young man, I was able to attend Thanksgiving Dinner with my daughter and her family in Wappingers Falls NY.  It was a very enjoyable afternoon.  The scenes shown above are of their back yard.

During my visit, I was able to attend The Beacon Players' presentation of "Footloose" at The Seeger Theatre at Beacon High School in Beacon, NY.  The actors and crew, all Beacon High School students, did a great job.  The sets and lighting were well designed.  Also, I liked the idea of having tickets with assigned seats.  On another evening, I attended my four year old granddaughter's first dance recital at Beacon High School.  She looked beautiful and did a great job.  Kudo's to the lighting crew for that show, as well.

The day before returning to San Diego, we visited New York City.  My San Diego daughter and grandchildren had come to New York for the 8 year old grandson's birthday.  He wanted to go to the Lego store in New York City.  My Beacon daughter, granddaughter and I went along for the fun.  After taking Metro North to New York City, we headed out into the extremely cold, windy day and proceeded past the New York Public Library at my 11 year old granddaughter's request.  Then on to Toys R Us on Broadway.  There we were joined by my San Diego daughter's good friend and her 8 year old daughter who had already ventured in.  Toys R Us seemed like a massive store.  In the center of the store is what looks like a three story Ferris Wheel.  The seats are replicas of cars.  The store also had huge replicas of The Statue of Liberty, The Empire State Building and a ginormous Dragon, all made of Lego pieces.  The only thing the store could improve on, at least in my opinion, is to have a cafe lounge with specialty coffee for the adults who wait while the families roam through the store and do their shopping.  This cafe should be restricted to age 40 and over.  Since I hopped onto the elevator with a family that was going up one floor, I was present when the family tried to get off on level 3.  They were met by an employee who advised them that the area was not open to the public.  So, Toys R Us seems to have the room.  Everyone in our group enjoyed the store, especially Candy Land.  The younger ones liked the Lego structures. The granddaughters were pleasantly surprised with finding a Clare's tucked in a corner.  So, this store seemed to have something for every child.

For lunch or an early dinner, we went on to Carmine's Restaurant on 44th Street.  Going there is a tradition for my Beacon daughter.  The food was wonderful and served family style. We shared Spaghetti with Meatballs, Penne alla Vodka and Chicken Parmagiana as well as a mixed green salad that was absolutely delicious.

After dinner, we walked to Rockefeller Center, which is a very popular tourist destination, to see the Christmas Tree.  The tree is located adjacent to the skating rink, which is shown to the left.  The statue that overlooks the rink was festively lit (shown to the right).  The huge traditional Christmas Tree is shown below.  We wound our way through the crowds to the Lego store.  After selecting some individual tiny Lego bricks, we completed our New York City visit and returned to Grand Central Terminal to catch the Metro North train for home with a very happy Birthday boy.




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Friday, November 7, 2014

Micah 31 years later




Thirty-one years today, Micah Christian Hall went to be with the Lord.   Micah lived 6 1/2 yrs with no center wall in his heart.  A piece of membrane created the chambers and the amount of blood that circulated into his lungs was five times the amount that circulated throughout his body.  This is how we understood it.  I believe that the medical term was a 'complete Atrioventricular canal defect.' Micah went to school and rode a big wheel, something his doctors and specialists never expected.

To quote his sister, Terese, "Micah was amazing, smart, so funny...and yes, he had Down Syndrome. Yet, for all of us, his 6 siblings, he was just Micah, no different than us and we loved him. Acceptance, understanding and love is the key!!" You can read about this in "The Book of Micah" (e-book) on Kindle and the Nook.

Last night, I received a call from my eldest.  Starting at 5:30am this morning, I received calls from two of my daughters and will definitely hear from the other three as the day goes on.  My children always remember the day Micah was born and the day he died.  Sometimes, life gets in the way for their mother and I may not remember until all the calls come in. 


I do remember, though, having my three eldest children in a large baby carriage in Canarsie (a section of Brooklyn NY).  An older woman walking by, stopped me, putting her hand on the carriage.  She said, "Tsk, tsk, tsk...poor thing." to a young lady by her side.  I remember feeling indignant.  I thought, "How judgmental."  We chose to have these children, who were born one year apart and we weren't on welfare or government assistance.  Now these children are accomplished adults and always look out for my welfare.

Having Micah, as well as his brother, Chris, and sisters, Beth, Ami, Bonnie, Terese and Becky was such a joy.  I am blessed with a wonderful family.  As a family, we were and still are very normal.  Over the years, we've experienced hard times and good times, but we are certainly blessed.  Also, I am so thankful that my children are so good to me.

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Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Our Friday Night at the Corvette Diner

Recently, on a Friday evening, my daughter called and asked if I'd like to join her family for dinner.  They wanted to surprise the children so they took a circuitous route to get to the restaurant.  The children were unfamiliar with the route, but as the car got nearer, my granddaughter recognized the location.  My grandson didn't catch on until they were in the parking lot.  He was so excited to be at the Corvette Diner, he literally jumped up and down with a big smile on his face.

The Corvette Diner is located on the former Marine Corps property at Point Loma in San Diego.  When we entered, we were seated immediately in the 'diner' section.   The decor reminds you of a diner of yesteryear.  Each table has a window that displays snippets of movies and popular TV shows of the 1950's, like Lucy and Desi and Leave it to Beaver.  The movies shown were scenes of "Sabrina" with Audrey Hepburn and Humphrey Bogart, and another of Fred Astaire dancing.  This is a great way to keep the customers happy while waiting for service.  It's also a great walk down 'memory lane.'

The waitresses wear poodle skirts that were popular in the 1950's.  Both male and female servers participate in a dance routine, performed several times a night.  A man who creates figures from balloons made the animal selected by my grandson.  So, as you can imagine, you never get bored waiting for your food.  Everyone enjoyed their meal and the atmosphere.

This is a restaurant well worth the visit.  Please keep in mind that on the night we went there was no waiting.  However, on other nights we have had to wait for a table.  I encourage you to check out the Corvette Diner.

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Monday, September 8, 2014

Never Forget Sept 11, 2001

I have reprinted the following account several times.  Thirteen years have passed and time marches on, presenting presently  other grave concerns.  However, we must never forget September 11, 2001.  We must remain alert and vigilant.

Steel Girders at Ground Zero (World Trade Center)


No American civilian should ever have to experience the events of 9/11 on American soil. And, my experience of that day is in no way comparable to the heartache of the families of the victims. The following is just my personal recollection of that day.

As my train pulled into Grand Central Station that morning, I heard some buzz from other commuters. But, it was none of my business so I just got off the train and walked the underground tunnel to the Forty-fifth Street exit. As I walked up Madison Avenue, I saw a throng of people standing around a bank looking at a TV. As I tried to see that they were looking at, somehow I got the message that something happened at the World Trade Center. I remember looking in that direction, seeing smoke, and trying to use my phone, and then, trying my Blackberry. No signal. I proceeded north to my office on 52nd St. When I arrived, I saw that I had a message from my daughter who worked near the World Trade Center. However, I could not reach her since I had no phone service.

I proceeded to work. A short while later, I heard that there was a TV in Personnel. So, I went to that floor to see what was going on. After a few minutes, I squeezed into the room. The scene was incredulous. I decided that for me the best thing was to go back to work. Young people on my floor were just milling around. We were the IT (computer) department. They either had IT friends in those World Trade buildings or, like me, had previously worked there themselves. I tried to work, but at the back of my mind were all the tens of thousands of commuters who literally poured out of the ground from the PATH (a train from New Jersey). What happened to all those people? Many, many times I had walked through the underground shopping Plaza and the passage ways under those buildings as a shortcut to save time. Since my commute was 2 ½ hours each way from upstate New York, I was always running to be on time at work. In November 2000, a co-worker and good friend gave me a job lead that resulted in my leaving the World Trade Center and moving to 52nd Street. As an aside, I later heard that a very smart female executive of the Port of Authority ordered the trains diverted to the mid-town area of New York City, saving many lives. I thought of how I would take my lunch into one of the glassed-in areas of my building and look at the Towers. How magnificent they were. Of course, I was just looking at the lower floors. I thought the design was intriguing.

Later that morning, I finally heard from my daughter who was with her co-workers at an apartment in lower Manhattan. One of the workers just took his whole department to his home. I advised my daughter to stay right where she was with her co-workers unless they were evacuated. Then, I was contacted by a great friend from Merrill Lynch inviting me to stay the night at her place since the City was in "lock-down."

Being in Computer Security, I decided, since I had no phone, to try sending emails to get messages to my children. I thank the good Lord for the “Information Highway.” Being able to contact my family in an event such as this is why I feel so strongly that there should be no Government interference with the Internet. I emailed friends in San Diego requesting that they contact my family. My children thought I still worked in the World Trade Center. Exactly where I worked was not one of their concerns. I didn’t know my son’s work e-mail address, but decided to create the addresses in different ways. Surely, one of the emails would get through. Not knowing was going to happen next, I wrote to my son that his sister and I were OK. I gave him the address and phone number for the apartment where she was staying. Then, I gave him the phone number of the friend with whom I would be staying. Without being melodramatic, I thought this might be the last communication we could possibly have. It brings me to tears when I think of it.

Around noon, I went to the bank to get money since I couldn’t get home that night. The sea of people walking, shoulder to shoulder, north out of the City on both sidewalks of Park Avenue was at least five people deep. It was an amazing, yet fearful sight.

Around 1pm, my daughter, accompanied by a co-worker, walked the 30 blocks to be with me. Her hair was covered in ash. I got her in our “locked-down” building. When we reached my office, the phone rang. It was my son in Los Angeles. My daughter, wide-eyed and in shock, told him what happened….her words just spilling out. I tried to calm her down. Her only response to me was, “You weren’t there.”

Then, my daughter told me we just had to get out of the City. She kept pressing. As far as I knew, we couldn't go anywhere. I decided to leave and walk to Grand Central to see if any trains were moving. I never in my lifetime had been prepared for what I saw.

As we walked the now eerily empty Park Avenue south to the train station, we were met with men with megaphones ordering us where to go. We walked a sidewalk cordoned off with safety tape into what seemed like the only open entrance. Other than the sea of people in the great expanse of the center of the building, I don’t remember much except that my mind kept reeling, thinking that something else could happen at any moment. Before long, we were on a train leaving the City.

That evening, watching TV, I saw the real events I knew nothing about because I tried to work that day. I realized that I, being the kind of employee I was, would have returned to my desk in one of those buildings when the “All Clear” announcement was given.

My daughter and I were now safe, but what about those people who died. What about their families? Even today, my heart goes out to them

I realize that this is a sharp contrast to my usually light-hearted and hopefully informative blog. I will always remember my daughter walking 30 blocks to my uptown office, covered in ash from those collapsed buildings….wide-eyed and in shock, having seen death and destruction not many American civilians have ever seen. And, as I said in the beginning of this writing, no American citizen should ever have to experience the events of 9/11 on American soil and no one should ever forget.


Photo of New World Trade Building in 2012 now completed


 

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Friday, August 29, 2014

Getty Center


Los Angeles

Yesterday, I went with my daughter, daughter-in-law and four grandchildren to visit the Getty Center in Los Angeles.  After we parked the car, we boarded a tram for a ride up the hill to the entrance to the Getty Center.  The buildings are covered with travertine stone.  When we first arrived the buildings appeared to be the color of white.  Later in the afternoon, they seemed to take on a honey hue.

The first location we visited was the Family Center where the children enjoyed a hands-on experience.  Within this large room, there were several cubicles.  Each presented a different artistic experience.  The first presented the children with materials for making a face mask.  The child could draw whatever they wanted on the mask, attach the ready-made string and put it over their face.  Some of the children were quick with this, others were more detailed. The next cubicle provided the experience of tracing a picture of a number of items, such as a butterfly, an insect, etc.  The third cubicle contained a copy of an 18th century bed.  A little baby was crawling all around the bed while the baby's father watched.  The next cubicle had large rubber tubing that connected to openings in an opposite wall.  They were a little thicker than the tubing at a gas pump.  The children enjoyed disconnecting one end the long tube from one hole and placing that end into another hold on the wall.  There was one instant where the children disagreed about where and how a tube should be placed.  One wanted it wrapped around another tube, while the other child objected that it wouldn't reach the opposite wall.  It was a lesson in deliberation and teamwork. The wall of the next cubicle was lined with what looked like rear view mirrors from trucks.  The children could manipulate each mirror.  The other wall depicted a desert and was magnetic.  Magnets with a picture and shape of a desert animal were provided.  The children could move them where ever they wanted on the wall.  When the children were ready to leave, there was a wall through which they could place their heads.  The wall had a mural of a crowd of faces painted by the celebrated artist for this season.  We took a photo, which provided a cute memory for the Mom's.

By this time, everyone was ready for lunch.  The cafe sold sandwiches, salads, fruit, potato chips and drinks.  It was reasonably priced.  We sat at a table in the open-air travertine court yard. 

After lunch, we visited the beautiful Center garden.  It had a wide array of lovely flowers and bushes, as well as some outdoor sculptures.  The children skipped along the path as they took everything in.  The area was sloped so that we walked lower and lower down the hill.  At the bottom, there was a pond with a maze of hedges.  It was very beautiful.

Then back up the hill to one of the buildings where the children had the opportunity to hunt for certain artwork shown in a small booklet.  The pictures presented a mystery.  The children took the challenge and quietly went in and out of the museum rooms looking for a match to each picture. The items on display were from 18th century.  The children examined them all, looking for matches to the pictures in their booklets.  They were elated when they found each object.

I didn't include the photos I took because of copyrights. I encourage you to research The Getty Center in Los Angeles California.  Also, when you are in Los Angeles, it is well worth a drive to the Santa Monica Mountains to experience it.  The buildings are beautiful and the whole afternoon was very enjoyable.

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Thursday, July 24, 2014

Great Week

After returning from New York in mid-June, I was assailed by a terrible head cold.  I spent three weeks getting over it.  Three quarts of Wonton Soup from the Mandarin Wok in Clairemont helped immensely.

This past Saturday, I attended the birding tour presented by the Friends of Famosa Slough in San Diego.  On this day, there were only three of us with the leader, Barbara.  I try to go every month because I learn something each time.  The tour leaders are very knowledgeable.  Because there were only three people Barbara was able to go into depth for the other guests were attending for the first time.  I reaped the benefits.  Barbara heard a Clapper Rail hiding in the salt marsh, but we couldn't spot it.

The tide was low so we saw Fiddler Crabs and California Horn Snails.  A Snowy Egret was lying low to the ground to feed on something.  Then we saw two young Black-necked Stilts (photo below left).  The adults have a black back with reddish pink legs, but these young birds had a mixture of black and brown backs with very pale pink legs.

Young Black-necked Stilts
Clapper Rail







 The other two ladies had to leave to attend another event, so Barbara and I went to the west side of the Famosa Slough, which is across West Point Loma Boulevard.  We spotted a Clapper Rail (photo right).  The Clapper Rail seemed to be cautiously watching a Western Gull who arrived on the scene.  The Gull then spotted what looked like a dead fish and proceeded to feast.  That photo wasn't appealing.





On Monday, I met a friend, Diane, for lunch at Mimi's in Mission Valley.  We had an enjoyable time conversing as Diane's lunch was a salad with strips of chicken, and mine was a Spinach quiche with a side of fruit. While we choose different restaurants when we meet, Mimi's is convenient and always good. 

That evening, my son-in-law decided to make a "Thanksgiving Dinner" and suggested to my daughter that they invite me.  The table was set as it would be for Thanksgiving day.  The dinner was scrumptious.  I always make a great Sweet Potato Casserole with marshmallows, he one-upped me by adding a little bourbon.  Delish.  It was such a pleasant surprise to have this little celebration on a warm summer night.

On Tuesday evening, my daughter took the children and me to The Palette, the student-run restaurant at the International Culinary School at the Art Institute in San Diego. My daughter enjoyed a Melon soup as an appetizer, followed by Barbecued Short Ribs.  She gave me a tiny taste of each.  Nicely done.  She would have shared more, but then, I'd have no room for my meal, as my children say I eat like a bird.  My granddaughter and I each had a large root beer glazed pork shop with succotash and sweet potatoes with fennel.  My granddaughter was able to eat most of her pork chop.  I could only eat a little.  My grandson relished his chicken fingers, which I believe was really an appetizer. Dessert was a chocolate lava cake.  I skipped it, but the others informed me that it was absolutely delicious.  Everything tasted so good, we took what we couldn't eat home.  It was a very enjoyable meal.


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Sunday, June 15, 2014

Restaurant Reflections

I'm back in San Diego after a visit to New York.  While there, I enjoyed lunching at a few restaurants, notably, Cafe Maya in Fishkill and BabyCakes Cafe on College Avenue, Poughkeepsie.

As on every visit to Cafe Maya on Route 9 in Fishkill NY, I choose the same appetizer, Quesadillia with skirt steak.  I always enjoy it.  My friend, Katie, enjoyed a chicken breast.  I don't remember the name of her dish, but she told me she really enjoyed the cream sauce served with the vegetable serving. I especially enjoy visiting Cafe Maya and recommend it highly.

This past rainy Friday, my LaGrange daughter and I had lunch at BabyCakes Cafe, located across the street from Vassar College.  Since we weren't that hungry, we decided to split a BLT sandwich.  The menu stated that it came on a Cibiatta Roll,  I don't eat a cibiatta roll so my daughter asked if we could get the sandwich on brioche bread.  The waiter replied that we could not because the chef would not like it.  From the expression on his face, I got the impression that the chef was touchy.  That's too bad.  My daughter always liked this restaurant, but was a little dismayed that no variation in your order was allowed.  I ordered wheat pancakes with bananas and my daughter chose the BLT as offered on the menu.  As we waited, we spoke about how unfortunate that there was no variation allowed considering how many eateries there are in this neighborhood.  My pancakes were OK, but I would not order them again.  I had expected more rustic pancakes like the wheat bread I bake at home.  I've gone into detail about the BLT because the owner might want to reconsider honoring a request to minimally vary something on the menu when a customer requests it.  Since neither of us could finish our meal, a waitress provided us with cute little flat cardboard boxes, made in the US.  As we were leaving, my daughter decided to purchase a red velvet cupcake for her daughter, who loved it.  I'm sure my daughter will go there again. 

After I arrived in San Diego last evening, my daughter, her children and I went to the Studio Dinner in Kearny Mesa.  After a day of travel, I was hungry.  We were greeted by very friendly hostesses.  Even though this is is a very popular restaurant, it didn't take long to be seated.  On the menu I saw an open-faced turkey sandwich with mashed potatoes, stuffing, covered with gravy.  Green beans and cranberry sauce were served on the side.  It was absolutely delicious.  Also, I believe it would feed three people.  My daughter ordered a grilled cheese sandwich with sweet potato fries.  My granddaughter enjoyed a BLT on white toast and sweet potato fries on the side.  She has a healthy appetite, but she could only eat part of the first half.  Another very large serving.  She did enjoy the part she ate.  My grandson ordered mac and cheese and was very disappointed.  The dish was just pasta with cheese barely melted.  I think he expected a 'creamy' mac and cheese.  The servings were so large that no one in our party could eat even half of our meals.

The Studio Diner advertises as a "comfort food restaurant." We left with the food we were not able to eat in boxes.  In the box with my left-over turkey sandwich, the waitress added another container of cranberry sauce.  Today a portion of it was my main meal.  We all agreed that the Studio Diner served very ample servings of delicious food.  I recommend a visit there.

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Friday, May 23, 2014

Arielle

Last week, I was in Rhinebeck, NY with one of my daughters.  We walked to Market Street to find a quick place to get some supper.  As we walked past the stores, my daughter decided to check out a menu on the window of one of the restaurants.  So, in we went.

We didn't have much time, so we ordered a simple fare.  The waitress told us of a special appetizer they were offering that evening.  It was burrata (soft creamy cheese wrapped in mozzarella) and it was sumptuous.  I had french onion soup which was also very good.  My daughter chose a baby arugula and pear salad.

The food was delicious and reasonably priced; the atmosphere, peaceful.  I recommend this restaurant.


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Friday, May 2, 2014

Birds I've Seen Lately




Last week, I had the opportunity to visit San Elijo Lagoon Ecological Reserve, located near the Pacific Ocean north of San Diego.
Whimbrel


Whimbrel
An e-mail from a birder mentioned seeing a Virginia Rail, which is not common to this area.  I went there about two hours later, but didn't see it.  The lagoon was quiet except for a Whimbrel walking around.  My Cardiff daughter and I walked through part of the park.  We did see sunning lizards, but only one Whimbrel.  This migratory bird spends the summer in Alaska where it breeds. I would like visit San Elijo Lagoon again and recommend it.



This week we experienced warmer than normal temperatures, 89 degrees on Monday, into the 90s on Tuesday through Thursday and 88 degrees today.  On Wednesday I was visiting my daughter in the North Clairemont section of San Diego.  The days were windy.  Today it was only breezy.  And no, I don't believe this was a sign of "Global Warming."  I believe we were experiencing what is called here in Southern California, "Santa Ana Winds."

On Wednesday, I heard a number of bird calls coming from her yard in North Clairemont.  I went out to investigate.  I had heard at least six or eight different calls.  Then I checked the trees.  All I could find was a Mockingbird.  This bird was singing it's heart out ... call after call after call.  You would think I was standing in an aviary.

Northern Mockingbird

Yesterday afternoon I received an email stating that a bird enthusiast was at Cabrillo National Monument, near Point Loma.  The writer stated that there were hundreds of birds there.  Then, this morning my daughter who lives in Cardiff by the Sea sent me a text stating that there a lot of birds in her yard.  She lives about a mile up the hill from the beach.  My daughter listed that there were crows, hawks, gray birds with white markings and some other birds she could not identify.  I decided that the birds were probably still at the Cabrillo Monument, as well.

Western Scrub-Jay

So this afternoon, off I went to Cabrillo National Monument.  Well, if the birds were there I didn't see them.  I did see a Western Scrub-Jay as soon as I arrived.  Then I saw one I could not identify.  I thought the picture of the bird hopping along the roof was cute, so I included it.  I don't think that these two pictures were of the same bird because the bird on the right appears to have a lighter colored beak.  As I walked one of the paths, a bird flew right at me, just missing my forehead.  It was a hummingbird. It corrected itself and flew off a little to fast for me to get a photo.

Cabrillo National Monument is still a nice place to visit and I enjoyed walking around.  It is open from 9:00am to 5:00pm.





 




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Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Congratulations, U.S. Post Office

I want to thank the U.S. Post office for providing American Flag Stamps in books of ten. I wrote about that on my post of Feb. 22, 2013 titled, Post Office.  Today, as I was mailing a package at the Midway Post Office in San Diego, the clerk asked me if I needed stamps. I thought about it and decided to purchase a small book.  Imagine my surprise as I said that I knew I could not get a stamp with an American Flag on it because they only come in books of twenty.  I then asked if she had any stamps with the Purple Heart on them.  The clerk quickly responded to me, stating that she had American Stamps in books of ten.  The clerk then advised me that the small books go quickly.  Maybe the Postmasters should order more of them.

Congratulations to the Post Office Executives.  This not only enables me to exhibit my patriotism in a small way, but makes me think that maybe they got my message.  Thanks, again.