Farewell to California

Our week in California went by lightning fast. We we’re definitely having fun.

Thursday we visited the Botanical Gardens in Ft. Bragg. They were impressive even in January. They had hundreds of rhododendrons, just budding out. I’m sure they will be spectacular in February.

This is a heather and heath garden. I finally discovered the difference between heather and heath. Heath has needle like leaves and closed bell like blooms. Heather has scale like leaves and open bell like flowers. Both are beautiful.

After strolling around the gardens, we ate at North Coast Brewery & Restaurant. I had the fish and chips. It was a locally caught rock cod and delicious. I ordered the recommended Pilsner that went quite well with it.

Sunday morning we began our trek home. It started with our first flight being delayed. It was a full flight and to speed up the boarding, they offered to check carry-on luggage to final destination for free. We took them up on it. We had no idea how far apart the gate where we would arrive and the gate we would depart were. If we were speed walking, doing it without our backpacks would be easier. it turned out the distance wasn’t that far and we were able to grab a quick sandwich to eat before boarding our final flight. About 5 minutes before boarding we were told that there were 3 too many passengers. 3 volunteers were needed to fly out the next morning. After the offer was sweetened with $2000 in hotel and food vouchers, they had their 3 volunteers. Once aboard, we were told we’d be taxiing over to be de-iced. It had been snowing/ freezing rain earlier. Add 20 minutes to final arrival time. Then we lost our spot in the take-off queue. Add at least 10 more minutes. So instead of landing at 10, it was after 10:30. Then we had to wait our tun to use the only staffed unloading gate. It was after 11 when we got off the plane. The pilot apologized that we’d spent more time on the 2 runways than we were in the air. Then we had to wait for the earlier flight to get their luggage before ours could be put on the carousel. Finally we got our luggage and could go home. After this trip, I can honestly say I’m not impressed with United airlines. I can’t be too critical because we did arrive in both destinations with our luggage’s. Maybe airplanes being on time is over rated.

Much of this day was spent doing laundry and getting back into the daily routine. We picked up Khloe from her “camp” adventure first thing. She wanted to catch up on the news. Neither of us had watched TV in 8 days, and I should have continued into day 9. So many shootings and violence. Plus we are under a winter storm warning Tuesday night into Wednesday. It started with 3-6” but has increased to possible 12”. I just want to stick my head back in the sand.


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