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Wandrin 2002

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by Lloyd Treichel

Wandrin

Dateline: January 2, 2002 -- San Diego, California

Chula Vista RV Park is where Wandrin Wagon has been parked for almost two months.  This was a good place to stay while I enjoyed the warmer weather.  It also allowed me to be close to daughter Vanita so we could spend some quality time together.  

Standing still for these two months is getting a little too comfortable.  I don't have to do any planning or deciding where to go next; I can just sit here.  But adventure calls and I will be heading to Arizona in a few weeks.

There are many "snowbirds" here and I have been having a great time meeting them and joining them for potlucks and other social occasions including the Bingo games where I have been winning a little to supplement my retirement income. 

When I leave here in less than two weeks, I will get teary eyed as I leave all these new acquaintances behind.

Rosarita in Baja California, Mexico was some international travel for a day trip.  The tour included a stop at the Calafia hotel overlooking the Pacific Ocean.  A stop in downtown Rosarita included a huge outdoor mart with locals selling all the usual stuff. I never knew that there were so many things that I did not need!

The Mission Basilica San Diego de Alcala was the first of the California missions established by the Spanish in 1769. This faithful reconstruction of the original continues to serve as an active parish for the Catholic community.

San Diego Zoo is one of my favorite zoos. Since Vanita has a membership to the zoo, we went several times during my stay and during one of those visits, I was able to get this picture of a Giant Panda.

Met old acquaintances ... here in the park. ... Joyce and Jack Igoe were co-workers at Hitachi Data Systems and StorageTek. ... Frank Detweiler (an ex IBMer) and I shared stories about CICS from the early 70s.

Living in Wandrin Wagon ... Just stepped into the shower and was lathered up and the water pressure drops and then eventually stops. That is a bummer!  Unfortunately, I know what the problem is.  Since I am a solo traveler, calling "help" will do no good. 

The reason for the problem is that I had moved to a new location in the park.  That means unhooking all the utilities and then hooking them up again.  Turning on the water after connecting the hose is a good idea....  It assures I am not caught in the shower in a soapy state.

Don't worry.  I did not do anything antisocial like running outside in that soapy state and turning on the water.  Fortunately, I had some water in the fresh water tank, so I was able to turn on the water pump and step back into the shower.  

An observation: Clutter is much more noticeable in a small space. 

Just wondering ... Could a person start a business selling furniture cushions that are found abandoned along the freeways and roads?  It should be no different than hub cap stores.

Just wondering ... Why is it an Egg Ranch here is Chula Vista and an Egg Farm in Colorado? ... And in reality, they really are egg factories.

Cinnamon Roll Search ... In a previous column, I had stated that cinnamon rolls are a very personal thing.  My mother's roll is the standard for me.  One of my readers asked me to describe that.

The standard for me is one that is about an inch high, with the spirals of the roll that are about 3/4 inch across with a light cinnamon, brown sugar and butter filling with a very light coating of a powder sugar frosting.  Balance is the way I would describe it.  When I bite into a cinnamon roll, I want to taste the roll -- not have the taste buds overwhelmed by sugar and cinnamon and frosting.

This past month, I did find a bakery here in Chula Vista -- Julian Ames Bake Shop.  And there were cinnamon rolls.  They weren't mothers, but they weren't the worst I've had.  They were a little short on balance -- too little roll for the amount of cinnamon filling and frosting. The balance is the thing that is most frequently missing in cinnamon rolls. 

And so I continue my journey ... still searching.

Latest Read ... "Journey With a Baja Burro" by Graham Mackintosh. In a previous book "Into A Desert Place", he followed the coast of Baja California.  In this book he returns to the Baja, but the tour is to stop at the Spanish mission sites along the way to the Loreto mission -- almost a thousand miles south from the US border.  With his pack burro Mision, he crosses this almost waterless land.  

This book is a description of a physical and spiritual journey and well researched historical information included to put this harsh land in perspective. 

Arm chair travel is what I do best.  I can only marvel at this walking excursion into this arid land where the concern is to find the next fresh water.  It seemed that I needed to have water nearby at all times as I read this book.  

The book reminded me of watching the movie "Lawrence of Arabia";  I was thirsty through the whole movie. 

Hiking ... was mostly walks.  When I did go hiking, I found myself on trails where at the trail head there were the warnings about mountain lions in the area.  Since I was reading "Journey With a Baja Burro" at that time and Mackintosh refers to the many stories he heard about mountain lions, it made for a less than pleasant hike.  When Macintosh had seen the pelt of a recently killed lion, it had a tendency to make him concerned about his solo walk.  

The lion stories and that experience had a tendency to ruin my hikes.  I could envision lions under every shrub and behind every rock.  

Vanity Plates ...   
... "XENTRIX" -- On a very small car.
... "UNDERBRD" -- Could not figure that one out until I realized that it was on a Thunderbird.

Bumper sticker on an RV... "It's lousy mileage for a car, but great for a house."

Bumper sticker ... "Grace Happens" on a small car turned right in front of Silver Slug (Ford one ton diesel).  I hit the brake to avoid an unseemly encounter.  Yes.  That is Grace! 

Quotable quote ... 
"We don't go anywhere. Going somewhere is for squares. We just go!" - Marlon Brando, The Wild One (1954)