Monday, April 30, 2018

Tinkering With The RV

Monday: (04/30) Cool overcast day. Lou and I were out shopping in the morning. Dawn was working at the Friends Of The Library. I relaxed all day except for the laborious job of searching Amazon for a few things like the replacement RV shower nozzle we were looking for this morning. Granola for breakfast. Lou and I had lunch at Baji’s Cafe, a nice omelet. Steak, noodles, and corn on the cob for dinner.

Friday, April 27, 2018

Dave's Ranch Visit

Friday: (04/27) Granola for breakfast. We finished packing to leave for our weekend visit to Dave’s Ranch. Lou and Dawn went off to a Verizon Wireless store to get her replacement iPhone setup. That took a long time. While they were busy I gassed up the RV and got LPG. Still, they weren’t ready. We had Chipotle bowls for lunch. At about 1445 I decided to head off toward the ranch to get through traffic and they could follow when the phone was ready. Before I got on the highway they called and said it was ready so they met me and we hooked up the Jeep and were finally off at 1500. Traffic was bad until we got onto Highway 84 in Pleasanton. It took an hour to get from Milpitas to Fremont on Highway 680 due to a stalled truck in the middle lane. We arrived at Dave’s Ranch about 1730. Leftover sauerbraten for dinner. We were not the first but not the last to arrive either. Terry and family arrived about 1030. We settled in by the house allowing a short walk to the house for Lou. Her knee is bothering her.

Saturday: (04/28) I started with a short hike out to the Homestead cabin and around by Lower Lake then back home. Lou made an omelet for breakfast. Dave led a hike/tour of the ranch. I went with them and it was basically the hike I took earlier. When I returned from this second hike my brother Ernie had arrived and Lou and Dawn were off to a nearby thrift shop. When Lou returned we had lunch. I took Ernie on a Jeep tour of the ranch. He departed before dinner. A bunch of the ranch visitors including us went to the nearby Junction Cafe for dinner. As seems usual, the cook lost our order slip so even though we ordered first in our group, we were served last after everyone else was finished. It was good in spite of the delay. After we got back to the ranch we had a campfire until 2330.

Sunday: (04/29) I started the day with a 5+ mile hike around the ranch. I started with the South ridge loop and added a hike up to the North ridge as well. It was via a steep undeveloped trail that the motorcycles use. By the time I got back to the RV, breakfast was ready and Lou and Dawn had finished their showers. Leftovers for breakfast. After breakfast, we prepared to roll and departed about 1150. We took highway 84 to the Niles District of Fremont. We had lunch at a deli bar then we looked around the antique shops. I returned to the Rv with my usual abbreviated looking while Lou and Dawn made their more detailed look. We were home before 1800. Cereal for dinner.

Thursday, April 26, 2018

House Hunting

Tuesday: (04/24) Granola and diced apple for breakfast. We waited much of the morning for the realtor to call with the time to tour a family home compound in downtown Pleasanton. While waiting we tinkered on projects. I was working on repairing the drawer under the stove. Just as I got going well the realtor called and ask if we were on our way. Evidently, he unsuccessfully texted me with the time confirmation. We headed off quickly. Ernie joined us. We toured the three home family complex called the Adam’s Family House. It is ideal for us, three houses 1500sf 3 bdrm 2 ba, 1950sf 2 bdrm 2.5 ba and 1750sf 3 bdrm, 3ba. 6 car garage. On a hill with views. All recently built or remodeled. Every possible feature except for solar. Close to downtown Pleasanton. Couldn’t ask for much more. After a late lunch, we spent the rest of the day looking around the area. Lunch at the Wild One Mexican restaurant downtown. Sweet and sour pork roast with rice for dinner.

Wednesday: (04/25) Nice as the house in Pleasanton is, we won’t be moving there. Too much disruption. Time restraints and a contingent sale likely wouldn’t work. Lou and I returned a borrowed wheelchair to the senior center. Then we visited the hardware store and nursery. I planted the new fuschia plant we bought. I finished repairing the drawer under the stove. It only needed two wood strips glued and tacked on the sides to minimize side to side movement of the drawer. The final thing was to reinstall the latch at the center where now it will, hopefully, now jam as it was doing before it fell off. I also reinstalled the heater vent cover. It came off. Turns out it had been modified a little due to not enough material for screws to attach to the fiberglass shower. It needed a couple of screws that the original didn’t need. A walk in the evening to San Antonio to meet my daily distance goal. PBJ toast for breakfast. Hot dog and cheese sandwiches for lunch. Sweet and sour pork roast with rice for dinner.

Thursday: (04/26) My birthday. Up early. Enjoyed granola with diced apple for breakfast. I had an appointment with my dentist to get my implant stud installed. Lou came with me. At home, she made some creamed broccoli soup for lunch. Dawn’s friend Andrea came over for a visit. In the afternoon we went to an early dinner at Los Altos Taqueria. Lou was busy pre-cooking meals for our camping trip this weekend. I was relaxing. The tooth replacement isn’t painful and I’m not in any real pain but am taking advantage of some rest time.

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Fall Creek Hike

Sunday: (04/22) PBJ toast for breakfast. Watched most of the Sunday morning political shows. We walked up to the Farmer’s Market on California Avenue. A little gardening, a little tinkering. A lot of relaxing.

Monday: (04/23) After a breakfast sandwich and apple fritter to start my day, I was off to Felton for a hike at Fall Creek Unit of Henry Coe State Park. It was an 8.5-mile hike along a flowing creek in the redwood forest. Beautiful day. As usual my fellow San Jose Mid Week Hikers were fun companions. At home, I had the rest of my apple fritter and a hot dog and cheese sandwich for a late lunch. We were off doing a little shopping later.

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Antique Tractor Show in Tulare

Saturday: (04/21) I prepared breakfast sausage and cheese sandwiches and we were off early. We drove down to the Antique Tractor Show in Tulare. We arrived about 1130 and departed just before 1700. Lots of old operating tractors, trucks, and equipment. I watched a hay loading contest, bucking bull riders, reviewed the 4H exhibits and more. We brought our lunch of ham and cheese sandwiches but also enjoyed cast iron dutch oven cooked peach cobbler ala mode. Many of the owners of this old equipment are getting really old so I hope younger people are interested and keep these relics alive.

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Where did Spring Go

Wednesday: (04/18) Our street was marked “No Parking” for tree trimming today and they started with our trees. They really didn’t need any trimming and that was obvious by the tiny pile of branches after they were through. Off early to get a blood test at Kaiser. On the way home I got a breakfast burrito at Safeway while Lou shopped. A short visit at home and then we were off to my dental appointment. My bone graft passed the test and I’m now scheduled for the implant next week. We picked up Dawn and went up to Redwood City to shop and walk at Costco. It was a cold day so a nice day to walk indoors. I unloaded the Jeep for calling it day. I had dim sum for lunch and chili for dinner.

Thursday: (04/19) I slept in late having stayed up late bingeing on WestWorld. A sausage for breakfast. Resting all day. Ramen and spam for lunch. I guess I miss the trail because that was the most common dinner. Lou and I went to dinner at Nob Hill Market deli. Had to get out somewhere. Really nothing accomplished today, how nice.

Friday: (04/20) I caught up on my sleep last night. I had a sausage and pie for breakfast. We dropped Dawn off at Barnes and Noble's then went to an appointment at Santa Teresa Kaiser in the morning. Afterwards we went shopping. For lunch we went to The Cheesecake Factory at Oakridge Mall. Somehow we managed to make a day of it and arrived home near 1700. Lou made BBQ ribs and baked veggies for dinner. I received a request to post a Meetup event. We had been wondering when fellow hiker Dave would be having another Open Ranch. He contacted me to make a post for it next weekend so we will be camping there 4/27-4/29. Unfortunately it conflicts with a hiking group potluck so probably won’t have too many other hikers there?

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Oceana County Park

Tuesday: (04/10) A cool sunny day. I spent the day recuperating at home. Lou and Dawn took a long walk in the morning and went shopping in the afternoon. Rice for breakfast. Lou’s pea soup for lunch. Beef stroganoff for dinner.
GPS: 35.104518, -120.625334

Wednesday: (04/11) More rice as cereal for breakfast. We headed off to San Luis Obispo for the day. I managed to get a short walk at Laguna Park. We did some shopping and looking around. Lunch was at Panera Bread. We were home just before 1700. Lou roasted some chicken, vegetables, and potatoes for dinner. We had a nice day until just before we came home and then the winds picked up. Fortunately, they didn’t last too long.

Thursday: (04/12) Dawn and I walked up to the Station Cafe at Grand Avenue. We had a nice breakfast there. We then walked out Grand stopping at a thrift store. Lou met us there. She had been at home cleaning and taking the last shower. Dawn then visited Nan’s Bookstore while Lou and I toured Miner’s Hardware. We then went home for lunch. I had a ham and cheese sandwich. Then we returned to Grand Avenue and Lou visited another thrift store and I visited RV World. I bought another sewer ell for the RV. I then walked back to the RV and Lou and Dawn continued shopping. In the evening we headed down to San Luis Obispo for dinner at the Central Coast Brewery on Higuera Street. Nice thin pizza, parmesan fries, and salad. A good cider and stout as well.Then back home for the night.

Friday: (04/13) Granola and bacon for breakfast. We headed down to San Luis Obispo and I dropped Lou and Dawn off at a Goodwill Thrift store while I headed over to Cole Jeep to get the oil changed and tires rotated. Wonderful shop and service. So much better that my recent experiences at our local dealers in San Jose and Santa Clara. That took about an hour to complete. I then met Lou and Dawn at a nearby shopping center. There was a Tuesday Mornings store there and Lou had found some of the peach preserves I like there so I bought all they had. It’s hard to find. We had lunch at Pizza Republic. I had a slice of pizza, Dawn had chicken fettuccine and Lou had deviled eggs and grilled chicken. Wonderful place. More thrift stores and other shopping before topping off on gas at Costco and heading home. Fish and chips for dinner.

Saturday: (04/14) Toast and avocados for breakfast. We were off early toward Los Angeles. Dawn wanted to attend an expo for blind adaptation equipment at the LAX Airport Marriott hotel. We arrived there about noon and had lunch at the hotel cafe, The Hanger. I had an interesting Fritos Nachitos, possibly the best nacho grande I’ve ever had. Dawn had fresh potato chips with blue cheese sauce. Lou had a salad. We all looked through the expo and Dawn was busy asking questions of the vendors. We departed just before 1700. I didn’t want to get on the freeway heading home so we took Highway One out through Santa Monica and Malibu. We stopped for dinner in Carpenteria at Pizza Dan’s. Got home at 2200. Nice day. Traffic wasn’t really bad either direction. The weather was nice.

Monday: (04/16) Breakfast at the Rock and Roll Diner. It’s a cafe in two rail cars about two blocks from our campsite. After breakfast, we headed up to San Luis Obispo. Dawn was busy and Nemo’s and Barnes and Nobles. Lou was busy at Beverley’s. I took a walk around the neighborhoods. We met for tea and a snack at Louisa’ Cafe. Lou and I took a walk and visited Mountain Aire Sports Shop. Lou tried on a bunch of shoes. We then all went to the Tractor Supply Store and a nursery before stopping for dinner at the Central Coast Brewery again. Home a little after 1900.

Tuesday: (04/17) While I was busy draining our tanks, Lou made smoked pork chops with eggs and leftover home fried potatoes for breakfast. We prepared to leave and hit the road. We stopped in Greenfield at Rancho San Miguel Market for lunch. They have the best flan and Dawn and I shared a torta. On to home arriving about 1630. We arrived to find sings on the street preventing parking either side for the next two days. Evidently, tree trimming. I parked the jeep on the lawn and Ernie brought his car into the driveway. Chili for dinner.

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Kern River Campground

Wednesday: (04/04) I made the mistake of mentioning to Lou that on my three most recent hikes I have become winded very quickly, not my norm. She made me make an appointment with my new Kaiser doctor which was to be 1500 today. Granola with diced apple for breakfast. We went out to lunch at Panera Bread then took a walk around Mountain View until my appointment. I just changed my primary doctor at the recommendation of a friend because my long time doctor is leaving Santa Clara where I have been going and moving to San Jose. Since I’ve wanted to use the closer clinic for a while anyway, and didn’t want a longer drive, I changed to the Mountain View clinic. That was two days ago and today I’ll be seeing the new doctor. Good choice, as it turns out. No problem found but more tests to follow. Otherwise today we were busy finalizing our preparation to leave. About 2000 we finally hit the road. We waited until after the commute traffic died. We stopped for the night at the Bradley Rest Stop near Camp Roberts just north of Paso Robles.

Thursday: (04/05) Apple for breakfast then on the road from the rest stop near Bradley. We stopped for gas in Paso Robles then on to Bakersfield on Highway 58. The morning sun heading Eastbound was interesting, but not unmanageable. We continued through Bakersfield out to the Kern River Campground by Lake Ming arriving about 1030. We selected site 44 and registered for four nights. We’ll probably be here longer but will have to change sites on Monday due to this side of the campground being closed for watering. Lou prepared grilled cheese sandwiches for lunch. We had an afternoon treat of popcorn. We enjoyed relaxing in camp all afternoon. In the evening at 1800, we met my cousin Judy and her husband Don and their friend Pat at the Rice Bowl for dinner. We visited there after eating and headed back to the park at 2000.
GPS: 35.445968, -118.917017
Our campsite and the river next to it.

Friday: (04/06) I was up early at 0600. I enjoyed a nice morning hike along the river this morning. Saw an otter in the river. Worried about fallout as geese flew over my head. Enjoyed a cow's aerial act on the bluff above the river. Who would think that that lone bush on the edge would taste so good? The trail consists of single track dirt and some paved bike path and then dwindles into a fisherman's trail. I enjoyed a nice sunrise over Lake Ming as I started my hike. The Kern River may seem calm but is not. 280 people have died in it since 1968. Last year three died on memorial weekend and 24 others needed rescue. No swimming for me today. I had to hurry back to camp and we headed off to Milt’s Restaurant to meet Lou’s friend Anita for breakfast. After breakfast, we stopped by at Anita’s house and picked up Lou’s electric scooter which Anita had borrowed. We then visited Camping World so I could redeem a coupon that will expire soon. I needed a new cable entrance door and a new 15a to 30a adaptor. We then returned to camp for a nap and leftovers for lunch. I continued to relax at camp while Lou and Dawn visited some thrift stores. They called to say they had dinner out so I had a chicken pot pie at camp.
The river in the morning.
A nice sunrise over Lake Ming. The calm river on right.
Trail East of camp by river.

Above left top center is a cow on a cliff. A closeup is on the right.

Saturday: (04/07) We started the day with a short drive to the other side of Lake Ming where I had seen the beaver/otter yesterday. It was threatening rain and Lou and Dawn were wearing their rain jacket. I wasn’t as it started to sprinkle I returned to the car to get an umbrella. While I was gone they got their view of the beast. Dawn even got some video. We’ll probably be back tomorrow. We then went off to breakfast at Noriega’s Basque Restaurant. Great Basque family-style breakfast of thick bacon, homemade sausage, pork chops, an omelet, salsa, French fried potatoes, sliced cheese, apricot jam, and bread. I did my best. Lou and I then went shopping and Dawn went to a used bookstore. We got back to camp about 1500 and relaxed the rest of the day.

Sunday: (04/08) I took a morning walk while Lou and Dawn took showers. I walked West toward Hart Park and did a loop around the park. I enjoyed observing the feral cats and peacocks. I also watched some Frisbee golfers finish their round. Interesting to see a guy with frisbees pushing a golf cart. Most of them just have a backpack with their frisbees and markers. I got to do a little of the trail on the bluffs. Lou and Dawn picked me up after my 4.7-mile walk. We then took a drive out Round Mountain Road which circles North CW through some oil fields. About 10 miles out we came upon a guy walking carrying what looked like a gas can. It wasn’t It was a portable battery jumper. Unfortunately, it’s battery was dead like his truck battery. We couldn’t see his truck. He said it was down a hill. Since we didn’t have jumper cables we tried to charge his battery with ours but I don’t think that worked at all so we cleared a seat and drove him back to his truck which was down an old oilfield road and up a 4x4 road. He found a rope so we pulled his truck up to the main road. We had just arrived there when a pickup came by and we flagged him down. He had one of the tiny lithium batteries with jumper clips on it. After a few attempts the truck started and we were off to continue our drive. We came out to Granite Road which brought us back to North Chester Avenue. We did a little looking around at where the new Highway 58 Freeway is passing through my Aunt Helen's neighborhood. We also took a look and my Mom’s old house. It was then time to pick up Anita and we went over to the Pyrenees Basque restaurant for dinner. After dinner, we return Anita to her house and we returned to camp.

Monday: (04/09) I took a shower in the park shower which provided unlimited perfectly hot water broken only by having to push a button every minute. We broke camp, took care of tank duties and headed over to Milt’s restaurant for breakfast. Lou and I shared tamales with chili verde and eggs and Dawn had biscuits and gravy. We then hooked up the Jeep and headed out Highway 58 to I5 then onto Highway 43 toward Paso Robles. We stopped in Chalone at Jack Ranch Cafe where I took a nap and Lou and Dawn found some great pies in the cafe. I wasn’t feeling well. From there we headed on to Highway 101 South to Pismo Beach. We didn’t have reservations and were lucky to find a spot at Oceana County Park for 8 days. We found our favorite North Beach CG was closed due to flooding. We settled in and had leftovers for dinner.

Sunday: (04/15) We relaxed at home most of the day. I did take a walk through the dunes and farm fields of Oceana for about five miles today. Leftovers for breakfast. Clam chowder for lunch. Broccoli with wieners and a baked potato for dinner. A sunny but brisk day with some wind.

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Murietta Falls Hike

Tuesday: (04/03) Up early and off for a hike. I stopped at Happy Donut for an egg cheese and bacon English muffin. I then met Alex and Betty at Kathryn’s house for our carpool to Lake Del Valle in Livermore. Our hike was up to Murietta Falls. It’s a 12.5 mile round trip with a good climb (3300 feet plus) up the mountain. I had trouble doing the climb and was slowing the group down so I dropped out at 4 miles, continued by myself on to 5 miles then headed back to our start. It turned out to be about right giving me a nice 10 mile hike and letting me arrive back just 30 minutes before they all returned. We relaxed a while enjoying some cold drinks then headed home. Traffic wasn’t great but we were home before 1900. I had a ham and cheese sandwich and Dawn had fettuccine for dinner.