Welcome back to ‘Colorful Colorado’
California is great, but there’s nothing like home sweet home
By Margaret Melloy Guziak -
We returned home from five days in San Diego where I got my “California fix,” so I am good for another year. By that I mean that of all the cities in California (and I confess I haven’t been to them all), San Diego is by far the prettiest and nicest city in the entire state. Ask anyone who has ever lived there. When I told some friends who had lived there, where we were going, “Can I go, too?” was the first question they all asked. Some would probably have ridden on the SUV’s roof rack if it was possible. Ha.
As an added bonus, our oldest son lives there with his beautiful wife and two, smart and pretty, college student daughters sharing a lovely California home, and it was his birthday that Wednesday. We always opt to stay at a three-story hotel in Pacific Beach, which is located on Diamond Street, between Mission Boulevard and the boardwalk, so we are almost ocean-side. Tip: If you plan a trip to San Diego, don’t stay in some of the larger hotels in Mission Valley. They tout being only “x miles from Sea World or the downtown San Diego Harbor,” but what they don’t tell you is that their hotels’ front doors and packed parking lots empty right out onto the freeways, so you need to get back into your car and navigate busy freeway miles to get anywhere near the sandy beaches of the Pacific. (If you want to know the name of the hotel, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will be glad to share their website with you).
Another reason we love San Diego is that we lived there for 12 years, buying our first home there shortly after four years of college life in Michigan. We arrived with a 5-year-old son and a daughter, almost two, via Route 66 in our newly purchased Chevrolet which we had bought in Lansing before leaving the state. With a San Diego job confirmation and a college degree in his pocket, my husband and I, along with our two young children gleefully embarked on a grand adventure. Neither of us had ever been in California before, but the hopes and dreams of living out West propelled our car all the way to the shores of the Pacific Ocean. It was where we grew up as a young married couple and raised our “now-adult” three children, adding a son who was born there, so it has always been special to us.
Actually the whole trip was special this year. We always try to celebrate his birthday every September. But, this was the first time we had vacationed with all of our three children together at one time. We kept it a secret that they were coming along, and anyone who knows me knows that keeping a secret is a very hard thing for me to do … but I did it and we pulled it off.
When they arrived at our hotel to take us to dinner, which is our custom, they parked and got out of the car. My daughter-in-law was carrying a vase of six lovely, pink roses for me. (See. I told you she was special). She was accompanied by our son. After we hugged and kissed, Ray directed her to put the flowers on the desk in the other room, which she did. When she saw my daughter and then our son waiting in the other room, she squealed and laughed with delight. The “birthday boy” went in the other room to find out what all the commotion was about, and everybody started laughing and crying at the same time. What fun. A birthday we will always remember.
There is so much to see and do in the Navy town of San Diego. Besides the clean beaches of Pacific Beach, Mission Beach and Ocean Beach, sparkling Mission Bay with its green, grassy open parks, and elegant Coronado with its Hotel Coronado, across the bridge, it is a magnificent, historic city, centered in Old Town, while the notable sailing ship, the San Diego museum’s, “The Star of India” built in Great Britain in 1863, quietly floats in the harbor, alongside two other ships, waiting for tourists to board. I won’t even try to mention all that we did this time in the five days we were there.
So, it is back to the real world of colorful Colorado, which is also a great place to return to. We are so lucky. The changing colors of the trees beckon us to drive up to the Grand Mesa every fall with our cameras, endeavoring to capture some of the beauty before us. And the rustic farmers’ stands in Palisade, and along the highway in Cedaredge that boast every type of ripe apples, alongside clear glass jugs of homemade apple cider call out to us to stop and buy some to take home.
UP, UP AND AWAY — Young Eagles day of flying a soaring success
Syndi Jochums, Young Eagle Coordinator for EAA 800 Chapter, called me today to say they have 63 children pre-registered to fly as Young Eagles on Sept. 29, with more parents coming who have called her, who are bringing their forms and children with them Saturday morning. An added, unannounced bonus will be Eddie C., an EAA pilot member, who is bringing his tethered hot air balloon for everyone to see.
We will have pictures in the Fruita Times, so don’t forget to pick up a copy next week, or subscribe and have it delivered to your mailbox every Thursday so you don’t miss an issue. The issue last week had so many pictures and interesting articles in it, along with a calendar of future events. If you are a parent, I can’t imagine not getting your own copy of the paper delivered to your home, so you can see if your child’s picture or a picture of a friend is included that week, and finding out about new businesses in town.