Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Day 24 with Tilda-Hilda


I had to talk myself into getting on Tilda-Hilda this morning. I had great excuses. It's too hot. It's too hot. It's too hot.  And, it wasn't yet 7:30 a.m.

Tilda-Hilda and I made a breeze for ourselves so it was actually pleasant. Now, stopping. That's a different story. We did a bit over 11 miles today in 64 minutes. Surprisingly, after two days away, I wasn't gasping as much as I pedaled Tilda-Hilda and me up the hills. I think it helped that the Husband and I walked under an umbrella of redwood trees on Sunday. All that wonderful oxygen.

Marilyn Monroe's "We're Having a Heat Wave" was going through my head on much of the ride. At one point, Neil Young tried to come through but Marilyn overpowered him. I couldn't figure what he was singing.

While looking for a video of Marilyn singing "We're Having a Heat Wave", I came across a rendition by Ella Fitzgerald. I like it far more.


Monday, June 29, 2015

Watching the Mama's Garden Grow—Seven Weeks Later

The Asian pear tree
Back in May, Molly the Cat suggested I keep tabs on how certain parts of the Mama's garden are progressing throughout the summer. Here's the original post.  And, here are what those spots look like seven weeks later.

Bean vines are climbing up the wires. The Mama has harvested a hand full already.

Other kind of beans are growing in the middle boxes.
See how well the morning glories have grown.

Because it's not being watered as much (drought, you know), the apple tree
hasn't many leaves. A few apples are growing though. You can see one near the
top right hand corner of the picture.
Mama planted four eggplant plants at the end of May. I'm impressed at how they're bursting with fruit in simply four weeks. We ate one eggplant last week. It looks like we'll be eating more soon.



Sunday, June 28, 2015

The Dude, The Husband — Happy Birthday!


The Husband and I are wandering around today celebrating his birthday. Whoot! Whoot! Whoot!

This song is is for him. My answer, of course, is: Yup. Always!




Saturday, June 27, 2015

Day 23 with Tilda-Hilda


The butterflies cheered Tilda-Hilda and me on as we slooooooowly pedaled up the long inclines. They flitted alongside us, weaving among the wild mustard flowers on the side of the road. A couple of the crazy butterflies played chicken with us, flying at us and swerving away at the last second.

At one point, two ground squirrels popped in front of Tilda-Hilda and me, and ran, ran, ran. "Hurry up, hurry up," I called, nearly catching up with them. A vehicle passed Tilda-Hilda and me. The squirrels dived into the brush.

An old guy (probably a bit younger than me) was taking photos of birds in a faraway tree with a camera with a humongous lens. I stopped to talk to him, thinking he was one of the photographers who posted their amazing photos at a Facebook group I pop in now and then.

As we chatted, a woman in a red SUV pulled up beside us. "There's a wonderful picture around the curve to take. A deer is sitting beneath a bush. It's so cute."

"Thank you," we both said. She drove off. I got on Tilda-Hilda. "Sounds like a sweet picture. I'll skip. I don't feel like pedaling back up the hill."

"Good idea," the old guy said, heading to his white truck. "Better get going before it gets hot."

"I'm almost home."

"Good for you for being out here. For trying."

I understood. How many old fat ladies pedal these hills on a pink cruiser? I know of one, so far.

"Have a good day," we said to each other. About a half mile down the road, the old guy passed Tilda-Hilda and me. I waved in case he was looking his rear view mirror. He waved back.

Tilda-Hilda and I had a satisfying ride. We pedaled just over 15.6 miles in 92 minutes, gradually climbing over 400 feet before heading back down.

Onward and upward.

Friday, June 26, 2015

A Giant's Shadow


When I was very young, I imagined that giants lived on the hills and mountains. Have I finally spotted one?

It's time for The Weekend in Black and White, hosted by Dragonstar. Click here to find other participants.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

A Day on the Freeway

My Alphabe Thursday theme—Places I've Been
Last year, the Husband and I drove home from San Diego, about 465 miles, in one day.  As young selves, the Husband and I were great long-distance freeway drivers. We each could go hours without stopping. Now, we want a bathroom, as well as our bodies need to stretch out of our cramped sitting positions, every 90 minutes or so.

When I'm a passenger, I entertain myself by taking photos out the window, of which I'm sharing some with you today. Hope you enjoy the road trip up southern and central California.

Our trip home started on Interstate 5. Almost immediately we were startled by the towering San Diego California Temple (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints) at the side of the freeway.

This is the northern edge of San Diego County. This terrain has always intrigued me. Not sure why. Just north of here starts a bunch of beach towns.

See the two people sticking cameras out their windows on the left. See the smoke on the right. A sideshow has just started. The traffic was stop and go so some morons idiots dumb clucks people could feel all powerful about themselves.

Lots of palm trees off the freeway in Southern California. Lots of them.
Every now and then, you see a bell on the side of Highway 101. It marks the trail of the old El Camino Real that the Franciscan friars made as they built 21 missions from San Diego to Sonoma between the 1760s and 1830s. Supposedly a mission was a day's walk away from the next one. Here's a link about the California missions, if you're interested.

One of the things I like about driving 101 in Southern California is occasionally seeing the ocean.

Do you see the face at center of the bottom of the cliff?

The Big Yellow House in Summerland, just south of Santa Barbara, is supposed to be haunted. The house was built in the late 19th century for a spiritualist colony. Until recently it was a restaurant. Here's a link for more info. I'm too much of a scaredy cat to skim more than a paragraph.

The mountains get a rounded look the closer you get to San Luis Obispo.

Crossing over into Monterey County.

That's the Salinas River, known as the Upside Down River because it flows north rather than east or south like most other rivers do. The mountain peak on the horizon is Pinnacles National Park, one of the newest parks in the National Park Service. We are 90 minutes or so away from home. Hurrah!


It's Alphabe Thursday with the lovely Jenny Matlock. To read what other bloggers have written about the letter F, please click here.

Day 22 with Tilda-Hilda


Today's outing was more of Tilda-Hilda sitting around and waiting for me downtown. She hung out in front of a coffee shop while I was at a meeting. When that was done, we tootled around town so I could take photos here and there. All told, we were out about two hours.  Discounting the time for the meeting and picture taking, Tilda-Hilda and I pedaled about 4 miles in 20 minutes. I don't know about Tilda-Hilda, but I broke into a sweat.


Wednesday, June 24, 2015

X-ray Vision

My ABC Wednesday theme: The Mama and Her Authentic
Green Thumbs. . .and Fingers
The Mama doesn't drive anymore because she can't pass the eye test for her driver's license. (Thank goodness for that.) She gets annoyed with night and dimly lit scenes in movies on the TV because she can't quite make out what's going on, no matter how bright we make the monitor. But, in her garden, the mad horticulturist has x-ray vision, with a side of radar.

Do I see that lone, lemon leaf in the middle of the geraniums? Of course not. The Mama does.

Do I see the banana blossom sprouting within the banana grove? Nope. The Mama does.

Do I see that big chayote hanging in the midst of the miracle tree? Uh-uh. The Mama does.



It's the letter X at ABC Wednesday, a meme began by Mrs. Denise Nesbitt and today hosted by Roger Green and his ABC team. Click here to check out other X posts by bloggers around the world.

Day 21 with Tilda-Hilda


The hot dog, four 4-ounce samples of different craft beer, garlic fries, grilled sirloin tips, and gooey chocolate cake with ice cream that I consumed late yesterday afternoon was my inspiration to sweat off some calories this morning. I pedaled Tilda-Hilda nearly 13 1/2 miles in 75 minutes. That's the longest we've traveled in both miles and minutes. Whooo-hooo!

Yesterday was the Husband's and my 23rd-of-the-month date. Thus, all the food. We shared everything but the hot dog and beer. The hot dogs we ate as we watched Spy, starring Melissa McCarthy, and the rest of the food we had after the movie. Spy, by the way, is a very funny and wonderful movie. I like to think that I would be McCarthy's character if I was a spy. All sweet and helpful, but a bad-ass, as in don't you dare get in my way when I need to get something done now!

Onward and upward.



Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Day 20 with Tilda-Hilda


Beeeep. Beeep. Beeep.


"I think I was being followed by a drone," I said to the Husband when I got home from a bike ride with Tilda-Hilda about two weeks ago.

"What?"

"It started when I took pictures of the goats on Best Road. I kept hearing a beeep sound until I got to the highway."

"I've heard that sound," said the Husband. "It's not a drone."

"What is it then?"

"I don't know."

"It was a drone."

Ever since that ride I have been hearing that Beeep sound on other back roads. Today I discovered the source. It's not a drone. Unless a ground squirrel is one.

Tilda-Hilda and I pedaled just over 11 miles in 64 minutes this morning.

Beeeep. Beeep. Beeep.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Don't Fly too Close to the Sun


Yesterday, the Husband and I went to the Hollister Airshow at our local small airport. The aerobatic pilots were amazing! This guy looked like he was bursting out of a sun bubble. It reminded me of Icarus.

Today, I'm linking up to the NatureFootstep Catching Light meme. To visit other participants, please click here.

Day 19 with Tilda-Hilda


I woke up this morning thinking it was late only to find out that I'd waken up early. The bright light filtering through the side of the curtains faked me out. Just as well.

We don't have a clock in the bedroom. So, I use the outside sounds as my gauge to the time. The other morning the early bird started chirping around 4 a.m. How did I know that? Because I went to the bathroom and before heading back to the bedroom, I popped into the office to stick my face right up at the digital clock on the radio. I could have put my glasses on to look down the stairs at the clock hanging in the living room. But, then I'd have had to turn on the light. No, thank you. Too bright. I wanted to fall back to sleep. And, I did to the pleasant song of the early bird.

So, today, Tilda-Hilda and I zigzagged through the neighborhoods for a nearly 11 and-a-half mile ride. One hour and five minutes, thank you kindly.

Forward, onward, and upward.


Sunday, June 21, 2015

The Daddy's Loving Support

Several photos in our family albums show baby or toddler me perched on a big log or rock at the beach as the Daddy held me securely up there. But, you can only see the Daddy's legs and a bit of his torso in those photos. One of my favorite photos is of him crouched behind a three-year-old me on the shore, with his feet and hands visible. In that photo, he seemed to be keeping fidgety me still for the camera. It's not until I'm 21 years old that you can find a photo of the Daddy and me together. And, that, too is one of my favorite photos.

I have wonderful memories of the Daddy. Playing out in the tomato fields while he irrigated them. . . being taken to my first day of school. . .riding in the back of his pick-up. . .seeing him in the back of the room at all my important presentations. . .watching TV with him. . .holding poles and boards as he hammered them in place. . .being taught how to drive a stick shift. . .traveling to the Philippines with him. . .going mushroom hunting in the hills. . . frying biscuit doughnuts for him for an evening snack. . .noticing a candy bar inch up on my pillow when I was sick. . . walking to the liquor store in San Francisco for a celebratory pint of whisky. . .overhearing him talk to his goats about the Mama. . . .

I remember the advise he gave me, some of which still cracks me up today, such as "Don't go fucking around (on the day of the prom)." "Don't go to any other church while I'm alive." "Don't be a hippie." "Don't trust anyone. Not even Filipinos."  "Be nice (when he knew I was going to turn down a chump who was courting his and Mama's hands for a chance at me)." Some I heeded. Some I did not.

The first white butterfly I see on any day, I think of the Daddy saying hello to me.

I miss seeing him in person.

This was taken at Daddy's 70th birthday party.
Sitting beside us is my Ninong (Godfather) Danny.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Day 18 with Tilda-Hilda


Tilda-Hilda took off later than usual this morning, because I was debating whether to take today as my rest day. I almost talked myself into skipping, but then I reasoned I would be rushing tomorrow as the Husband and I are going to see the air show at the airport. Hence, patient Tilda-Hilda and I pedaled off for a short ride.

So, I thought. Maybe if I didn't want to go up this hill (the one in the photo), it would've been a sweet, short, not-so-hard ride. But, then, no hard work, no healthy gain for me. Chug, chug, chug. I'm not a pretty pedaler going up hills. I gasp. I growl. I spit. I looked up at one point and saw a woman biker also pedaling a cruiser going down the other way. "Hello," I said. No response. She kinda had a disgusted look on her face. Oh-oh. She must've seen me spit. Oh well, as the Husband says, better out than in.

Anyway, we had another delightful work-out. Tilda-Hilda and I went about 9 miles in 49 minutes. By the way, I actually took the photo as I was pedaling. See ya.

Stats (since May 25, 2015)
Work-outs: 18
Miles: 148.2
Hours: 14.26
Weight loss: 4.8 pounds (since June 1, 2015)
 


Friday, June 19, 2015

Day 17 with Tilda-Hilda


Today, Tilda-Hilda and I reached one of our mileposts (lamp posts?). No, milestone. We pedaled to Tres Pinos and back. Our loop was about 12 1/2 miles, which we did in 71 minutes.

From the photo, the downtown area looks like it's far away, but it's only a few 100 yards from the sign. For a tiny downtown, it has four of the best restaurants in the area. If you're interested in knowing more about Tres Pinos, check out my post at Take 25 to Hollister.

Two things to note about this ride was that I pulled 10 goat heads out of Tilda-Hilda's tires and we came across a partially decomposed deer carcass. Shudder.


It's Good to Be Outside


It's the Weekend in Black and White, hosted by the lovely Dragonstar. Come along with me to check out B&W photos by participants from around the world.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

East of Eden

My Alphabe Thursday theme—Places I've Been

East of Eden is about 28 miles away from where we live in Hollister. We first drive west and then south to get there. I'm sure that the above photo clues you into the fact that the East of Eden about which I'm talking is where John Steinbeck based his novel and several other novels and short stories. Namely, Salinas and Salinas Valley.

Salinas is where Steinbeck was born on February 27, 1902. The house on Central Avenue where he was born and lived until he was a young man is today a restaurant. Unfortunately, the day the Husband and I visited the National Steinbeck Center, a couple blocks away, the restaurant was closed. That didn't stop us from walking over to the Steinbeck House and take a look around.


Have you ever read East of Eden? It's an amazing story. Very powerful and rich in detail. The screenplay for the TV mini-series with Jane Seymour follows the novel's line more than the 1950s movie with James Dean. Seymour's evil portrayal of the twins' mother was pretty close to how Steinbeck characterized her.

Here's what the interior looked like through the front door window

East of Eden was published in 1952. I wonder how it was received in Salinas. Many of his novels didn't sit well with the people of the area, especially those written in the 1930s, such as the Grapes of Wrath. My understanding was the locals hissed and dissed Steinbeck. Not so, today. The fact that Steinbeck is from the area is one of the big marketing points for tourism. Of course.

According to the sign on the porch, Steinbeck wrote his first short stories
and his novels Tortilla Flat and The Red Pony in the upstairs room.

After living in the area 12 years, the Husband and I finally visited the National Steinbeck Center in March. I had been lukewarm about seeing it because I didn't care for the way Salinas treated Steinbeck. The museum did a very good job presenting Steinbeck's life and literary work. It even displayed the camper truck in which he and his dog Charley traveled.

Instead of showing photos of the museum's displays, I'm giving you landscapes of Salinas, views which are no different from when Steinbeck roamed the area.

A view of Salinas Valley from the north. It's taken from San Juan Grade Road,
which Steinbeck and his family would've driven to visit his grandparents in Hollister.


 

 

It's Alphabe Thursday with the lovely Jenny Matlock. To read what other bloggers have written about the letter E, please click here.


Day 16 with Tilda-Hilda


Don't you just hate it when the thing you wanted to tell someone slipped deep into the recess of your mind? Maybe it'll come back to the top. Maybe not. Which makes me wonder, how deep are our minds that a forgotten thought gets lost. Anyway, we'll never know what it is I wanted to write about from Tilda-Hilda's and my ride this morning.

Oh, well. Cool station wagon, don't you think? It reminds me of the station wagon we had for a short while when I was kid. Our was beige with a tan top. I like station wagons even more than pick-up trucks. The last car I owned as a single woman was a used white Volvo station wagon. That was fun to drive. 

Today, Tilda-Hilda and I pedaled nine miles in 49 minutes. I was going to say 9 minutes per mile, but then that would make 81 minutes. My arithmetic skills are truly getting bad. But, I won't get into that. Instead, enjoy the bicycle song and video that Widdershins of Widdershins Worlds suggested the other day when I mentioned I was looking for bicycle songs. Thank you, Widders!