First and foremost, please tell me it’s not already November.
Well, it doesn’t really matter; you can tell me that but we all know the calendar has turned another page and there are only two months left to go in 2022.
Halloween is over, Thanksgiving looms, Christmas is not far behind.
So, my goal is to enjoy every moment of the next couple of months, hectic as they will be, to wrap up what has been a very memorable year.
We (my daughter, son-in-law, granddaughter and myself) had a wonderful vacation in October. Though we were freezing for much of the trip, the fall colors in upstate New York were truly amazing. My daughter took control of my cell phone and got me some more storage space because I was taking so many photos of leaves. Even before our vacation, I had dozens of videos and hundreds of photos that had not been uploaded because I had used up all my available storage. Now they are all safe somewhere, secure in a cloud and I do my best to keep adding to the collection.
Son-in-law Judd and I made fun of my daughter Ally because she had packed three bulky, space-eating jackets in her suitcase for vacation but she got the last laugh because she had the most appropriate winter-weather gear once we arrived on the East Coast.
Not winter temperatures if you’re used to living there, but definitely colder than we expected. I would check my weather information and the overnight low in the Central Valley was often warmer than the daytime high in New York while we were there.
But the good times with family and the absolutely gorgeous scenery more than made up for it.
Also, I learned that my “I don’t have allergies” proclamation is totally not true. I didn’t even realize that until the day after we got back. When I woke up the morning after our return to California, my head was stuffy, my eyes were watery … and then I remembered that I had absolutely no problems breathing on vacation.
It was an eye-opening ‘welcome back’ to the Golden State, where the almonds were being shaken off the trees. Don’t get me wrong, almonds are in fact my favorite nut, but the blossoms in spring and shaking in fall wreak havoc on my senses.
It was a whirlwind week for vacation, a couple of minor hiccups with slight time changes for flights, but no real issues. Well, the rental truck we had reserved was probably the biggest problem. Apparently that one had already been given to someone else so we didn’t get a truck. The young person at the counter asked us if we “really needed the truck” to which we answered “yes, that’s what we reserved” and he promptly told us “that’s not the way we do things around here” leaving us to wonder what the sense is in reserving one if you don’t get what you pay for. I inquired as to whether there would be a refund of any kind because we did not get the vehicle we reserved and he said that the one he was ‘giving’ us was actually more expensive but he wouldn’t charge us the extra. How very noble of him.
Whatever; it had four wheels, seatbelts and got us from Point A to Point B. We had to move to the right to get into the ‘slow lane’ going up hills but we made it.
And we packed a lot in. From family photo shoots to visiting some historic sites, reconnecting with old friends, celebrating my brother’s retirement, meeting a variety of animals at the zoo and watching nine-month-old Lorelei charm her East Coast relatives, it was a much-needed and welcome vacation for us all.
I can’t wait to go back.
Marg Jackson is editor of The Oakdale Leader, The Escalon Times and The Riverbank News. She may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 209-847-3021.