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Thursday, January 31, 2013

Ever So Close

Today, I decided to play golf and went to the local par 3 course and walked 18 holes.  The longest hole here is about 180 yards so it is both a good challenge and a good walk, right next to the beach.

For the first 9 holes, I joined a twosome of Randy and Steve, both retired teachers.  My first shot was within a putter head of the hole!


And no, I did not three putt it!  Always good to start off with a birdie.

For the back nine holes, I joined a retired missionary who is fighting cancer.  His name is also Dave and he has two more chemo sessions to go before a scan to see how he’s doing.  On the 17th hole, I did it again – another shot almost in the hole.


Didn’t three putt that one either!

It was a nice and sunny day, temp slightly over 70 with little wind.  Overall the golf was great, the playing partners were all class acts, and the exercise was a bonus!

Tonight we went out to AJ Spurs for dinner.  They serve a great meal and it is one of our favorite places to eat here at Pismo.  It is pricey, so we don’t go there often, but it is well worth it!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

2 walks, one mile and two million dollars apart!

Both yesterday and today we took late morning walks in the Shell Beach area of the City of Pismo Beach.  Both are walks we have taken before.

Yesterday’s walk was along another California Costal trail.  This one starts right outside a gated community of expensive homes overlooking the ocean.  According to Zillow, these places start at about $2 million and go up from there.  One is currently listed for $5.4 million!.  Petty cash, right.???



The seacoast views from here are pretty good too!


We never noticed the hole in the rocks in previous years!


This is a southern exposure panorama

Today’s walk was from Dinosaur Caves Park along the coast, then through a housing area and then back around the park.  The original cave for which the area is named, collapsed many years ago, but the park bears the name.  The coast here is equally as scenic as  yesterday’s.


The path that borders the coast is gravel, but is nice and wide.  You can see the Shell Beach housing area in the middle of the picture where we were earlier in our walk.


Weather today has been nice.  It is supposed to be very windy according to the forecasts, but there is only a gentle breeze with the temperature in the mid 60s.  (To all my friends in the Northwest, “Hey, it’s a dirty job staying here in this great weather while you freeze your buns off back at home, but somebody has to do it!”)

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Just an easy day in Paradise……

Not much to report today.  It is a sunny sky but a bit windy and that makes it cold too.

We took a 50 minute walk into town along the beach and then out onto the Pismo Beach Pier.


There were some surfers in the water because there is a high surf alert with waves up to 14 feet.  A few of them could really ride the waves, others were not so successful.


As you get out to the end of the pier you are beyond the breakers and so mostly fishermen are out here but there weren’t even too many of them today – probably because of the cold.


Of course the local scavengers are always alert for anything they can grab.  Interestingly enough, these are pigeons and not sea gulls.  We normally see way more gulls and maybe just a few pigeons.


Then there is this guy just hanging around.  He won’t get any food here sitting near the “do not feed the birds” sign.IMG_20130127_105701_473

Spent the afternoon watching the golf tournament and relaxing.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Leisurely Strolls

Yesterday we took a hour long walk through the Elfin Forest.  Carol’s blog (Click here to see) from yesterday explains how the area came to be a park.  But I was curious what “Elfin” means.  Is there some significance to the name?

I looked it up in a dictionary and got the following meanings:

1. Relating to or suggestive of an elf.  Didn’t see any elves around, so I don’t think this is it.
2. Made, done, or produced by an elf.  Well, I suppose elves could have made this place, but I don’t think so.
3. Small and sprightly or mischievous.  This sounds like the description for an animal or person, not a forest.
4. Having a magical quality or charm; fairylike.  All right!  This sounds good as the place does have a magical charm to it as the pictures below will show.


A good view of the hills to the east of the forest.


Looking over the mudflats towards Moro Rock from the forest.


From one of the viewpoints overlooking the estuary


The estuary mudflats while the tide is out

The entire walk is along a boardwalk path loop.  Getting to the loop though, is on dirt paths from the end of local streets.

Speaking of streets, to get here we came through the city of Los Osos.  As Carol mentioned, there is a project going on there to install new water mains.  Every street we look at had major digging going on and flagmen to control traffic.  I was surprised that a small city could have contracted with so many crews at one time.  Guess they want to get this over with quickly!

An interesting contrast is the city of Grover Beach.  They are doing a road project along 4 blocks of the main street.  There was an illuminated sign saying the work would begin January 14 and end in mid May.  Well, on January 14, they changed it to begin on January 21.  On the 21st, nothing was done.  On the 22nd, all parking spaces had portable no parking signs.  By today, there are the orange plastic construction markers in place.  Gee, they are really speeding this project along!  At this rate, it will be May 2023 before it is done!

Today we took a walk on the California Costal Trail.  It starts just south of our RV park and goes for one mile down to the beach and passes by one of the local municipal 9 hole golf courses.  The path is gravel for the first half and then boardwalk for the remainder.


I don’t know where these tree trunks came from, but neither of us remember them from last year.


The dunes here are covered with ice plant.  Looking onto the golf course.


Looking out over the dunes to the ocean.  The waves are much smaller today – maybe 3 feet at most.


A good view of the dunes with the ocean in the background.


Looking onto the golf course  (#1 green to the right)

We moved to our new spot right next to our old one.  This is our favorite because the grass makes it very roomy.  I was talking to the folks that were in the spot just before they left.  I asked them where they were from and they said Five Cities.  This is an area about 3 miles up the road from here!  I told the not to get too tired on the trip and be sure to take rest breaks while driving!

A few nights ago, I went down to get our mail just before 7pm.  While walking down, I got a picture of the outside of some of the common facilities and how they are lit up.  The picture below does not do it justice!


Lastly, I saw this picture at the local Round Table Pizza location.  See if you can make sense of it.  You might want to double click it to enlarge it.IMG_20130125_114450_727

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Red Sky at Night…..RVers Delight!

It started raining lightly during the night and then became fairly steady after midnight.  Never really heavy though.  When we got up, you could tell it had rained, but these sites have a sandy type gravel and the water percolates right through it.

The rain letup about 9 or so, but we couldn’t count on it not starting back up.  So after breakfast, we decided to do our daily exercise by walking the entire Costco store in San Luis Obispo.  That gave us a good 45+ minute walk though I think we both got dizzy from going in the aisles and making so many turns!

We ran a few other errands and came back to the RV about 2:45 or so.  While on my computer, I could see out the window and noticed that the clouds were breaking up and the sun was trying to poke through. 

This is usually a good recipe for a fantastic sunset, so we drove over to the nearby beach at 5pm and parked on the beach to get some pictures.

(When viewing the pictures remember that you can click on them to make them larger and some of these really look good when enlarged.)


Carol spotted a rainbow on the way to the beach


The sky as we arrived.  Watch how it changes as we go on.


A good view down the beach showing the salt spray.


There was a high surf advisory for waves up to 12ft!!!


We were not alone in watching the sunset!


The show begins….


Between big waves, you get a good reflection on the water.


The areas of blue sky are getting larger.


The large waves come in sets every 19 seconds


The sun is getting lower….


Reflections on the receding waves


The sun goes down and the sky lights up as a bird soars along


Almost looks like the sky is on fire


Zoomed out on this picture


Zoomed out even more


A patch of blue between cloud banks


The show ends.

We had a good sunset show tonight!  Usually the sunsets here are pretty fantastic.  While we have seen even more beautiful ones, this is the first one we made it a point to go down and watch.  You never know for sure how good they will be, and the Creator didn’t disappoint us with today’s!

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

A Cloudy Future

Yesterday Carol and I went for a 9+ mile bike ride in the morning under sunny skies.  Then after lunch, I went and played 9 holes of golf at the local municipal short course.  They only charge $8 for nine holes if you walk ($13 for 18) so it is a good deal.  I actually shot better this week than last (when I was so rusty!).

I was paired up with three guys from Fresno.  Turns out they are staying in the same RV park until early March.  Even better, one is located right across from us on the next street and the other two aren’t far away.  We may get together again and play more rounds at other courses.

Today dawned cloudy.  The forecast was for 20% chance of rain tonight and small chances for the next few days.  I have been working on some small computer consulting projects for a school district in Southern California.  I started working for them in 1974 and am still with them.  I mostly do trouble shooting and installation of applications that I have written over the years.

After lunch, Carol and I squeezed in a 35 minute walk.  She had gone shopping in the morning and did a lot of walking there so didn’t want to do another whole hour.  Plus I had to get back on my consulting so we cut it short.

While we were home a very strong gust of wind suddenly came up and really blew strong.  It only lasted for about 2 minutes and then there was no breeze at all.  I suspect a front came through here.

Lots of empty sites here now – maybe only a third or so full.  On weekends if the weather stays nice, it will fill in some, but the next holiday (President’s Day) it will fill back up again.

Monday, January 21, 2013

A Walk on the Wild Side

Yesterday we went for a long walk around the RV Park.  It takes about an hour to cover all 400 sites and it gives us a chance to scope out the other RVs that are here.

After that, I watch the two NFL Conference Championship games.  I was rooting for the 49ers and got worried when they fell behind 17-0 but they woke up late in the 2nd quarter and went on to a great victory.

I also rooted for the Baltimore Ravens and they too started out from behind.  Fortunately, they too woke up and won over New England.

So now we will have a good Super Bowl to watch in two weeks.  My good friend John was rooting for the Falcons and the Patriots, so he rooted against my teams.  I guess I’m going to have to be more careful who I choose for friends!  <g>

Today we went for a walk along the 101 freeway!  When we left the RV park, there were a lot of rigs checking out!


Then we went on a couple of local streets until we came to the walkway that goes up to the freeway and parallels the on-ramp.


Once you get up the ramp, you are right next to the traffic going 70 mph.  Fortunately, there is a barrier there.  But for the first part of the walk, the cars are coming from behind you and they are only 8 feet away!  Much better on the walk back.  At least you can see them coming.


Carol made us picnic lunches and we drove down to the beach and parked out on the sand and at lunch.  During lunch, we listened to the White Horse Inn, a weekly bible discussion which I highly recommend (You can get it on ITunes.)


After the lunch, we drove on down the beach for about 6 miles or so.  There are many RV parked on the beach with ATVs going all over the dunes.  They can camp on the beach for $8 per night if they are seniors ($10 regular) and quite a few people do. 

The weather today has been great.  Our temperature climbed to 75 at one point and was very enjoyable.  When we came back to the park after our beach ride, there were 7 rigs waiting to get checked into the park.  I guess that great weather brings them out!