October Back Home

October 19-31, 2022

Dear Family, Friends, and Diary,

sasquatchSince our return from the Northwest on the 18th, we have been working on reestablishing our at-home routines. We finished all the travel laundry, repaired the garden irrigation, and met with Vern and other friends to tell our trip stories.

In surprisingly short order, we were back to normal: painting for Marianne and YouTube and puzzle-making for me. (This mostly-brown Sasquatch was a memory from our visit to the Olympic Peninsula.) Neighborhood flowers have started their post-summer-heat season, so I had to take some pictures.

red white yellow

A week after we got home, Marianne had another birthday. We celebrated with dinner out at L'Apertiff Bistro, a new place for us. We had read some good reviews, and trusted them. Maybe that was right, or maybe wrong. The ambiance was dressy and old-world, perfect for a birthday celebration. The food was also old-world, heavy with French sauces. A recommendation? Hard to say.


Attempts at planning local excursions have largely failed. The Rahimi B&B in Monte Sereno, our go-to excursion, is being remodeled, so we won't see grandkids for awhile. Covid has hit family (Tom and Kate), so other gatherings have been postponed as well. And it seems strange to not have Carla, our normal travel transportation.aberdeen

Speaking of our injured Tesla, the last two-and-a-half weeks have been stressful. The plan had been to store the car in Aberdeen until the Portland shop was ready to accept it on the 24th. Every day I worried about our car just sitting in a locked yard and wondering what would happen next. I would occasionally check that its location remained the same and that the big battery was not dying. (In two weeks parked, it went from about 26% charged to 22%. Not a problem.) Almost daily, there were insurance forms to fill out and calls to make. State Farm Insurance's transportation service failed to move it on the 24th. Or the 25th, or 26th, or 27th. Incompetent low-cost contractor.

Finally, the Portland repair shop was authorized to send their own truck and responsibly carry Carla to their hospital. I am relieved this stage of the car recovery is done!

onto truck
arrived location now

Now it is Halloween weekend. We bought good candy, the kind we would have wanted, and joined Cambridge Avenue neighbors Monday evening to greet goblins.sunset

Meanwhile, we had a Cousins' Zoom with a special check-in from Cousin Tim in his new Lisbon home. Two weeks into his banishment, he seems to be doing well. We all need to visit!

Otherwise, it's just time to watch sunsets.

electionOn Monday, October 31st, we completed our civic duty and voted. Marianne and I followed our tradition and drove the ballots down to the polling headquarters, just to make sure there were no losses in transportation. There were no radical right-wingers guarding the polling station, thank goodness. Really, I do not know what has happened to America and the crazies populating the vote-denying block. (aka: Republicans) Here in Fresno, things are mostly normal, but the Trumpers surround us in the Central Valley - and in the rural West overall. It's discouraging to think the federal government will be stalled for the next two years if the Congress flips. VOTE!

Our other civic duty is to hand out candy to anyone who shows up tonight. Cambridge Avenue tradition is for most of us to gather on "The Commons", for a pot luck, while we efficiently hand out the goodies. It's a great tradition.

house set up
Daises first James devil
scooby line sisters
neighbors sister inflated
big kids siblingscheerleader M pumpkin
group ghost

Falcon HeavyOtherwise, we finish October with our normal activities: Marianne painting and studying about painting and me watching YouTube. I need to add pictures of her work, but I always seem to forget to document that part of our lives. Remind me.

As for my video-watching, the best shot these days was of the landing of two Falcon Heavy boosters from SpaceX. I am not a fan of Elon Musk's politics, but his cars and spaceships are impressive. (Now, if we could just get Carla back from the Portland hospital.)

Stay tuned,

John and Marianne