Nancy Cycles!

Nancy Cycles!
"You got to be careful if you don't know where you are going, because you might not get there." ... Yogi Berra

Monday, March 11, 2013

Train Insides

Monday 3/11/13

I am on the last leg and will arrive in Seattle this evening. Lynne was interested in seeing more of the inside of the train, so I thought others might be as well. These are small areas and difficult to get good photos, but I thought I would try.

As soon as you board you can put your (unchecked) luggage in on these shelves (or take it to your room if you prefer). Each car has its luggage rack.


Luggage rack

Immediately behind me from the luggage rack are the stairs to take me to my cabin.

Stairway to roomettes

The long narrow walkway at the top of the stairs holds the rooms and bathroom -- and perpetual coffee (no tea water!), juices, ice water and fruit basket.


Hallway of rooms

Think airplane when you visualize the bathrooms.

Reflection of my arm in the mirror of small bathroom

Back down the stairs is the shower (and more bathrooms).

I am standing in the hallway to get a shot of the shower
Inside the shower itself
Across from the shower door is the mirror area

I have included photos of the dining car and Parlour Car in past posts, so will not repeat them here.

Our stop in San Luis Obispo allowed for a walk (the only one on this trip so far) so I took a photo of the sculpture of the Chinese men "workin' on the railroad".


This will about end my blogging for this trip. I am posting one last look at the ocean.

Last view of the California Coast

For those of you who have been keeping up with me -- thanks for joining me on my adventure.


Sunday, March 10, 2013

Nature Preserve

Friday & Saturday 3/8 & 3/9/13

Alexis generously loaned me her car for the morning until she had to use it for work in the early afternoon. I drove toward the valley (or a valley as there seem to be many around) and came upon the Mission Trails Regional Park and Nature Preserve. I spent some time inside and out exploring the exhibits. There are lots of hiking trails but I when I saw the sign recruiting our help in using cell phones to report anything suspicious, I thought better of hiking alone. I enjoyed staying close and ogling the nearby stuff.

A view of the (I think) Kumeyaay Indian Tribe sculptures form sitting in an alcove carved into one of them
The Research Library
A view from the second floor
Picturing the many activities available here
Kumeyaa House
Mountain Lions and


Coyotes and...
Butterflies, oh my.

Shortly after I returned home and Alexis left for work, Sheri arrived home early from her work. We had some nice time together as she relaxed from a very busy week at work (the reason she could leave a bit earlier today).

Finally Sheri had a day off on Saturday -- and there was family "do" they had to go to. A baby shower for Alexis's nephew that they spared me from attending! Once home, Sheri and I took a nice drive to Shelter Island where Susan and I had stayed when we were down here two years ago. We had a delightful lunch overlooking the bay and boats before strolling along the promenade by water side. We waved at the SEAL as it passed by on its tour of the Bay, recalling the fun day we had aboard last week.

My final day here.

My train leaves very early Sunday morning ...

Sheri dropped me off at 5:30 a.m. for the three hour train ride to L.A. where I switch to the train to Seattle

...and I get home Monday evening. It is always hard to say goodbye, but going home has a nice ring to it! I miss home and all my family and friends so it will be great to get back to them.


Friday, March 8, 2013

On my own

Wednesday & Thursday 3/6 & 3/7

Wednesday was a true relaxing day! I lazed around the house a lot, walked the dogs a bit, and started to feel lazy. I put on my swim suit and walked up to the community pool for a hot tub soak and a little swim,

Hot tubbing in the sun -- how delightful
Nicely kept grounds at poolside -- and this afternoon I was the only one there

Other than dog walking, this was my only active part of the day. It felt quite good to relax and not worry about what I should be doing, or the list of chores and errands at home!

On Thursday I walked a LOT! I walked down to the bus stop for an early morning bus to the trolley station into downtown. I had thoughts of renting that bike, so was dressed in my cycling gear (shorts under long pants), picked up a Subway sandwich and proceeded to the bike shop.

The contrast (for Lynne) of the newer buildings with an older building in Gaslamp Quarter

Once in the bike shop -- I lost all interest in biking! So I left and walked down to Seaport Village for some tourist gawking. It was fairly quiet and few people out today. Basically the Village is a collection of shops and restaurants.

The walkway at Seaport Village


This is what the Village is all about

I did a bit of window shopping and worked my way to Embarcadero Park where I found a nice picnic table overlooking the Bay for my lunch stop.

Interesting trees (and tree roots) in Embarcadero Park


A closer look at the roots.

After my lunch I continued down to the main waterfront -- where I have toured around a lot in past trips so did not take repetitive photos -- and then caught an afternoon trolley home. The trolley system sure does make it easy to get to and from downtown San Diego from many outlying communities.

So far the weather forecasters here have been no better at forecasting than those in Seattle. They have called for rain the past two days but no rain so far. It was sunny on Wednesday and cloudy on Thursday, but warm at about 60 degrees.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Driving Tour

Tuesday 3/5/13

Alexis had the day off and wanted to take me on a bit of driving tour for the day. It was a nice relaxing touring day and fun to spend some time with Alexis.

We drove along the ocean at Torrey Pines Natural Preserve, through the towns of Del Mar, Solano Beach and Encinitas. Each town has its own flavor and impressive views of the ocean.

Lunch at Pannikin Cafe was a good stop.

Cafe is in an old colonial style house
Joey is looking at me, Billy is under the table waiting for Alexis to drop something
Lots of crumpet choices here ;'-)
Small store attached has so many tea (and coffee) choices, it was hard to decide


After lunch and on the drive home we stopped at the beach to give the dogs a nice salt air walk. It was a cloudy day but they didn't care. We took in some more fresh, salt air for ourselves as we watched several surfers out there riding the waves before continuing our drive home.

The weather forecast at this time is for some probable rain for the remaining days that I am here -- with sun returning on the day I leave! Looks like some relaxing and reading time coming up.


Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Public Transportation

Monday 3/4/13

When I left the house early morning, I planned to take a walk around the area and return in about an hour. As I walked I thought I could get to the trolley and head downtown and leave the day to Alexis for relaxation and rest on her day off. She and Sheri work very hard in the food industry and at least the first day off from work truly needs to serve as an R&R day.

About a mile and a half into my walk I spotted the #13 bus across the street and sure enough, the bus driver said she did go to the trolley station. At our first bus stop I felt I was back at work at DDD for it must have been time for folks to go to work. I was duly impressed with the appropriate level assistance and the respect that the staff members, as well as the bus driver showed these men and women who had a variety of challenges and assistance needs.

After a rather long boarding time at the bus stop, we did arrive at the trolley station and I easily caught the very next one into town.

I disembarked at the Gaslamp Quarter stop.

Strolling around the Quarter gave me some interesting views of an old part of San Diego.

A street in Gaslamp Qurtere
Many old and beautiful buildings but not very good vantage point for me to take photos

I found my way to Zanabar Cafe where I had had the best omelet last year and would love to have another. Though it was lunch time, they serve breakfast into the mid afternoon and I got my wish.

My next destination was the bike shop. I had visited this shop last year and knew I liked it better than the one Sheri and I had found the day before and if I rent a bike it would be from here. I had a good chat with the bike guy and know how to go about renting, what the fees are and which bike I would most likely choose. All that IF I do indeed ride one of these days here.

By now it was time to wend my way back to the trolley for the trip home. Did a bit more walking and gawking before boarding the trolley. Once aboard I thought it would be a nice trip to take the trolley all the way to its end point at Santee Town Square. And low and behold, right there at the trolley stop was a tea and crumpet place (I call all treats crumpets, and this one was a scone).

Tea and crumpet at Einstein's

When I got home at mid afternoon, Sheri was there after work and said she had been at Santee Town Square right while I was there! It would have been quite the surprise to run into each other there. But I boarded the return trolley without seeing Sheri, and got the bus to within a mile walking distance to "home".

We enjoyed a nice hot tub soak (felt so good on my now aching back) a float in the pool, and a delightful dinner that Alexis had prepared for us.

Another full day.

Monday, March 4, 2013

San Diego Bay

Sunday 3/3/13

First we had to get ready, and Sheri wanted to call and wish her mom (in Buffalo, NY) a Happy Birthday.

Sheri gives mom a call on her birthday

And here are Joey and Billy. I can never tell which one I take for a walk first -- are you Billy? Oh, maybe you are Joey. They are not even the same breed. One is much older and blind (Billy) and the other is much younger and has longer legs. Fine if they are standing next to each other, but you hafta be pretty familiar with them to tell them apart without critical inspection.

Joey and Billy in their favorite spot on the patil

Dogs walked and selves cleaned, we drove up to the public transit parking lot and rode the trolley into town. A perfect way to get to wherever we wanted to go downtown. We got to Seaport Village and found the loading place for the SEAL.

In Seattle we have the DUCK, here they have the SEAL


Capt. Adams and 1st matey Brenda would be our guides

Brenda was in her perfect role as guide around the Bay. She obviously loves nature, loves San Diego and appreciates the animals and the sea. And she is very entertaining and truly likes people.

1st matey went to everyone and took their photo with their own camera. Refreshing way to get you photo rather than getting back to the dock and having to buy one!
Sheri and I had a great day

We did learn that despite the name SEAL, these are not seals, they are Sea Lions.



Tried to get a photo of the egret and a Great Blue Heron near it, but failed.
We passed by the naval training area where dolphins are trained to help the navy in many tasks. Once they are trained well enough to find something, plant something, and do it with a person, the dolphins become part of the Navy Seal Team. Very impressive. Dolphins have always been my very very favorite animal so it was especially nice to see and hear more about them. We did not get close enough for photos, but we saw a few of them leaping in their pens as they were being tended to or trained.
Tried to get a photo of the egret and a Great Blue Heron near it, but failed.
Downtown San Diego


LAND HO!! Go that way.


Pelicans greeted us as we approached the landing and "got on the road again"

After our seagoing adventure, and before heading home on the trolley, we walked back to town and stopped for lunch. One more stop was a visit to a bike shop to check into bike rentals. I am not sure if I will rent one while I am here but was interested to find a place where I could rent one if I decide I want to do any riding. Chances are somewhat slim that I will, but ... you never know.