Thursday, March 14, 2024

Short But Sweet

I took a very short getaway with my daughter and grandkids.  We flew to our old stomping grounds in Santa Cruz, CA.  It was supposed to be three nights but it turned into two when a huge storm was forecast for Denver, our return destination.  So we bugged out of our lovely vacation rental early.  Good thing, too, for the storm has arrived and it is not pretty. Here are my old friends whom I have not seen in 15 years.  We enjoyed tacos and margaritas at a restaurant on the SC Wharf.  It was one of those get togethers where no time at all seems to have gone by.  They are warm and gracious as ever.

The vacation rental has a hot tub, which we all enjoyed, including some friends of the grandkids.  The house was quite near the yatch harbor, and I fell asleep to the sound of sea lions barking.  An old familiar sound for me.  I haven't been in the area in a decade, and I forgot how much I love the local flora: palm trees, evergreens, succulents, honeysuckle bushes spilling over the fence, Peruvian lilies in abundance.  Oh, and the Acacia trees with their bright yellow flowers filled with pollen populating all the mountain roadways.

Nothing ever stays the same, and Santa Cruz is quite changed.  High rises downtown, houses on the ocean front threatened by erosion and high waves and also huge buildings on Mission Street.  Of course I drove by some of my old houses there, including the one where I lived with my wife before our divorce.  I drove by that one, too, and lo and behold, she was out front unloading groceries from her car.  I didn't stop because I wasn't sure I'd be welcome.  Subsequent texting informed me that I would be most welcome.  We were trying to put something together when the news came that we had to change our flight and leave a day early. So, there you go.  But it was comforting to know that she wouldn't be waiting for me at her front door with a shotgun.  I supposed enough time (twelve. years) has gone by to soften and make fuzzy all the very bad things that happened.

It was fun spending time with the grandkids.  They were lil' champions on this trip!  Upbeat and cooperative.  They had a great time going to the amusement park and the local aquarium.  They loved seeing their cousins and friends.

Despite having to cut short an already short trip, it was indeed a sweet time with everyone.

Yellow Cottage, Part 2

I have a dear friend who I met in my Creative Writing class my freshman year in college.  I sent the poem to her for her comments and edits ...