After breakfast we considered our options for the day. With the temperature in the high 50’s we decided to go for a ride and see what the area offers.
We were told that we could get near the area scorched by the Station fire that ravished over 160,000 acres. After heading into the Angeles National Forest we drove along the northern edge of the site and were amazed at how everything was burned away. The landscape seemed surreal with rocks and dirt charred, trees mere scorched skeletons, buildings gone and traffic signs burned and twisted. Looking over the canyon we thought all foliage had been burned away, but in the several weeks after the fire we found nature starting the process of rebirth.
Discovering the road blocked to traffic, we turned and headed to Valencia to surprise our niece, nephew and the newest member of the Johnson family. Joseph (Joey) Wellons was born to Dhon and Lori on May 24th and has been a joy 99.9% of the time ever since. We loved holding and watching him (Joey) go from sober face to happy-grin face in less than a second. We enjoyed catching up with the family, but soon found time running out as we headed north to meet the other half of the California Johnsons.
Lori’s sister, Wendy, and her husband Jon live in Rosamond located several miles north of Lancaster off highway 14 next to Edwards Air Force Base. We came disguised as pizza delivery folks and enjoyed getting updated on them and their 4 children, Kevin, Katelyn, Matthew, and Grace. This past June we met them in Port Orchard at Sandy’s brother and sister-in-law house and it always amazes us at how fast kids change in just a couple of months!
Again, time was our enemy and the clock ordered everyone to bed. Their oldest boy, Kevin, was working on one of life’s challenges with a napkin. Sandy offered him 25 cents if he got his front tooth out before we left and Jim added a quarter to the pot if it came out before 7:30 PM. He worked and maneuvered the tooth, but could not dislodge it from its fibrous hold to his gums. We opted to leave the change with his parents for a reward when the job is complete. Our last view of the family was Kevin in the front room with his hand to his mouth. It was a great evening!
Arriving back at our campground, we were able to spend a half hour in the hot tub before retiring. We aren’t setting the alarm clock, as we only have a short drive to Anaheim for our next stop. Stay tuned to find out if we make it safe and how our next stay turns out.