ON THE ROAD WITH RICK AND KAREN travel blog

Our old house in Poway. So disappointing! Really needs a coat of...

Rick's cousin Nancy and her husband Tom,

The Palos Verdes Intrepretive Center's whale watching area.

The count as of March 5th.

Part of the shore line at the Interpretive Center looking towards the...

Point Vincente Light on the Coast Guard grounds.

The shoreline below the light.

The Friendship Bell.

Immense bell and beautiful colors

Nancy taking flight!

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A view of the Los Angeles Harbor. It is the 2nd largest...

A breakwater doing its job!

And the Angel's Gate light still doing its job.

Malnourished baby seals at the Rehab Center. They are tube fed 3x's...

Other marine life that are in various stages of recovery. They are...

The great blue herons arrive at feeding times.

The beautiful Point Fermin Lighthouse.

The original Fourth Order Fresnel Lens used in this lighthouse.

A lovingly restored interior including this cozy kitchen.

Several huge fig trees are on the property. They are from Australia.

The coastline as seen from the lantern tower.

The operating beacon that is used today.

In Point Hueneme you have to walk a 1/2 mile long promenade...

We saw lots of feral cats that live in amoung the huge...

Point Hueneme Light that sits on the Coast Guard base.

These RV's have been converted to be be driven on the left...

Cachuma Lake in the Los Padres National Forest.

Rancho Oso.

View from our lounge window.

Another view from our site.


It’s been awhile since my last post. Not because we didn’t have anything to share but that we have been too busy to share anything!

We moved to the rv park that is on Mission Bay on Feb. 27 and what a change! It was so quiet! What a delight. No freeway or train noise. Well, if you were outside and you listened really hard you could hear a very faint shushing sound of traffic but that was it. Plus we were closer to the things we wanted to see. So we did a lot of driving around and saying “I remember that”, but more often we were saying “I don’t remember that” and “it wasn’t like this when we lived here.” Of course we left San Diego in 1978. But we remembered the way the breeze felt on our faces and the way the sun shone. That hasn’t changed, in fact the weather was so lovely that the sun was shining a lot, especially the first week. It almost made us wish we hadn’t left. That is until we were on the freeway in the middle of the day and it was almost bumper to bumper with crazy people zipping from one lane to another without a care in the world or a turn signal, thank you very much!

For Sunday we planned on taking a drive north to Poway. This is the town where we bought our first house in 1974. We lived there for about 4 years before we moved to Colorado. This was the house that Jeff called home for his first 18 months. But, best laid plans do not always work out because I twisted that darn left knee again (I’m hoping that the 3rd time was the charm and it won’t happen again). So I was down for the day, hobbling around, back to using the brace and the cane again. Then, that evening Rick started to come down with a cold and being the nice guy that he is he just had to share it with me! So we were both out of commission for a few days.

By Thursday I said “I need to get out of this RV” and we decided to finally head off to Poway. Drove by the old house, it was easy to find since Rick was able to find the house on Google Earth. The house has changed a lot in 38 years and not for the better. Really bums me out when I see people not caring for their homes. And whether it was a rental or owner occupied, the person who owns it needs to be responsible for keeping up the property. If you can’t do that then dammit don’t own stuff! Of all the houses we have owned that was the biggest disappointment. Maybe because it was the first house we owned and we took such good care of it. Just glad now that we don’t have those responsibilities anymore. Rant over!

We were stunned with Poway. It has grown so much. I haven’t a clue what the population was in 1978 and now but we sure would have been lost, lost, lost if not for Google Maps! So many new housing subdivisions and businesses. They had all the shopping opportunities including a Trader Joe’s! When we lived there we had a grocery store, a small home center and saddle and feed store. Never did find those.

But what we did find was the home of a high school girlfriend who was also one of the bridesmaids in our wedding. Her name is Dolores and her hubby is George. I had tried calling her but wasn’t able to reach her so we decided to just drop by and hope for the best. So happy that she was home and welcomed us with open arms. She was so happy to have us drop in. In fact, she said that she prefers that to making dates to get together. We had an absolutely wonderful time. We didn’t leave until almost 11:00pm after tea, 4 bottles of wine, cheese and crackers and pizza. And like times with all good friends, it felt like we had always been together.

George and Dolores have a beautiful home in the newer area of Poway and have done a fantastic job of landscaping and decorating their home. They have a fantastic Koi pond and an aviary with some special parrots and the most darling Cocker Spaniel named Snickers. She and I became good friends. And wouldn’t you know that we left the camera in the truck! We were so busy talking and drinking wine that we forgot all about it. We will just have to go back real soon.

Since Friday was going to be the last day in San Diego we decided to have our last lunch at El Indio. Oh how I wish they were a chain restaurant, or that other restaurants would serve the same recipes. After all, anyone can stop in and buy their cook book. Because it is the best Mexican food ever. I am missing it already.

The next day, March 5th we reluctantly said good bye to San Diego with promises to come back again. We pointed our noses north. Our original plan was to stay at the Orange County Fairgrounds but we found out at the last minute that there was a big music event being held there and we wouldn’t be able to get in until Monday. So we made due with a park in Anaheim for Saturday and Sunday night. We were in this area for two purposes. We had two lighthouses to see and have dinner with Rick’s cousin, Nancy and her husband Tom. Rick hadn’t seen Nancy since he was a teenager and I had never met her. But we had become good friends through Facebook! Nancy and Tom have a lovely home in Irvine. It sits on a small lake with lots of ducks and geese enjoying life.

We went to their house on Sunday for dinner. Joining us was Rick’s niece Lori and her daughter Ainsley. We had camped with them a couple of years ago out on the Olympic Peninsula on the beach. Dinner was lovely; Nancy is a wonderful hostess. After lots of yummy food and great conversation we headed back to our rig. We would also be spending Tuesday with Nancy. We were going to see the Point Fermin Lighthouse in San Pedro.

On the day of our arrival in the area we decided to take a drive to Palo Verdes to see the Point Vincente lighthouse. This light is still an active aid to navigation and is on a Coast Guard base. We knew we wouldn’t be able to tour the light but we hoped we would be able to get some good pictures of it. And we knew that the stamp for this light, for our Passport Book, was at the Palo Verdes Interpretive Center which was next door. We were able to get some great shots of the light and the stamp in our book. We also got the stamps for the two harbor lights that we wouldn’t be able to see up close but we did get pictures of them on Tuesday. The Interpretive Center is primarily involved with counting whales and porpoises that pass by their spot high on a hill. So far this year over 500 whales had passed by on their way to Alaskan waters.

Monday was a down day for us though we did go to the grocery store and then on Tuesday we went back to Nancy’s house and jumped in her car and headed back to the harbor area to go and see the Point Fermin lighthouse. Little did we know but we would also see a beautiful Asian temple that housed an enormous friendship bell presented by the people of South Korea. It is on the top of a hill with a beautiful view of the ocean. And then we saw a bird and mammal care and rehabilitation center that is involved with the rehab of sea birds, harbor seals and sea lions. The volunteers at this facility are doing a tremendous job of saving baby seals that have become separated from their mothers. They arrive malnourished and very weak. But with their dedicated care they survive to be released back to the sea. Since there was a picnic table by the gift shop we decided to have the picnic lunch that Nancy had packed. We were all famished and needed sustenance to continue with our sightseeing. Then on the way to the lighthouse we stopped at a pullout and had a fantastic view of the Port of Los Angeles and the breakwater that forms the harbor. After pictures and oohs and ahs we jumped back in the car and headed back down the hill to the lighthouse. And to our surprise our guide for the lighthouse tour was the volunteer tour guide at the Mammal Care Center! Such a busy lady. Her name was also Nancy and she serves on the board of the Point Fermin Lighthouse Society.

We had a wonderful tour of the light and Rick and our Nancy climbed the tower with the tour guide Nancy. I waited for them on the landing of the second floor. For me going up the stairs was easy, going down on my own, impossible! It is a great lighthouse to see and very different from any others that we have seen over the years. We had a great day and a wonderful time seeing the light with Nancy.

So, Wednesday, was another moving day. We were at Rancho Oso RV Park, which is in the Los Padres National Forest. It was once part of an original land grant but was sold several years ago to the Thousand Trails organization. While in the area we drove to Point Hueneme to see the light in that harbor area/

We were Rancho Oso for two nights and this morning we moved on to the San Luis Obispo area. So, more from this area in another day or so. Hope you like the pics.

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