Monday, August 31, 2020

An Educational Monday

Monday, August 31, 2020

A warm day before the start of yet another, more severe heat wave hits SoCal was also the start of the official school year for our grandchildren Mary and Jacob in Camarillo.

You may recall that grandson Kevin started Third Grade in Las Vegas a little over a week ago.

Now it was the start for these two . . .

Mary and Jacob last Friday
which was an orientation day
for both of them

Today, Jacob started Third Grade
in a virtual setting

Mary was also in a virtual
Kindergarten today

Virtual Kindergarten?

Thank goodness that I'm a retired teacher in these virtual times!

From the internet today . . .

STUD Ohio State University
Belly Series Fullback from 1959-61

He rushed for 2,162 yards in his career, #2 all-time in OSU history at the time of his graduation behind only 1955 Heisman Trophy winner Howard "Hopalong" Cassidy.

In three years toting the rock 423 times for the Buckeyes, he was never tackled for a loss!


Norwegian artist Edvard Munch's
famed 1893 painting "The Scream"

I have to wonder, was it inspired
by a French baguette like this one?

Sunday, August 30, 2020

Walking More Then Usually

August 25-30, 2020

Another week of living in semi-lockdown is starting to wear on my mind.

But not as much as the fast approaching Presidential election.

This sums up what I took away from
the Republican National Convention
this past week


Our daughter-in-law Vanessa has officially been hired to her dream job as an elementary school counselor!

She starts work this coming week
at Newhall Elementary School

Congratulations and, Go Eagles GO!

On Wednesday, I opted for a long walk in the evening in Camarillo's . . .

 Historic Center

 I don't know of any truer words

Don Adolfo Camarillo
Founder of our little Community

 Actor Walter Brennan
once lived in Camarillo

Spokeless bike?

My life's credo

 On Friday I opted for a
five mile walk in Ventura

 Cemetery Park in Ventura

Although more park than cemetery today, there are still several grave nameplates scattered through the grounds.


A mushroom amongst the graves

 It's For Sale!

 Downtown Ventura's Main Street

During the pandemic it is closed off to vehicles so that restaurants can set up tables in the street.

It was 9:45 a.m. so few people
were out and about

Breakfast at the Busy Bee

But not for me, thank you.

Ventura's Italian Market
was closed until 11:00 a.m.

Ventura has lots of murals

 I liked this one

An OLD railroad bridge
by the beach

It was a nice day for surfing

 I like walking out on the pier

 Not many people out this morning

The view of the Ventura beachfront
from the end of the pier

The Camino de Santiago
goes through Ventura?

Speaking of which, last Thursday marked the tenth anniversary of the start of my 33 day, 500 mile Camino de Santiago pilgrimage trek through northern Spain.

Good time INDEED!

 On Saturday our University of
Washington corn hole game arrived

 Instant fun in the backyard
with our Grandson Jacob

 Son Mike road his bike to our
home this same Saturday morning

It's Tour de France time it seems.

"Is very bad to steal Jobu's rum.
Is very bad."  Pedro Cerrano

Reading Is FUNdamental!

Action packed, a good
historical novel

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

A First Communion and the Start of the 2020-21 School Year

August 19-24, 2020

It was both a thoughtful and eventful few days for us.

 One of the thoughtful moments . . .

 . . . and another that is SO true

This week I decided to put an end to my lethargy and resulting weight gaining by going out for long walks again.

The things that you see
on a neighborhood walk

 I liked this one much more

 Laurie and I have watched parts
if not all of the Dodgers first 30
games on TV this season

At the halfway point of this Covid-19 shortened season's 60 game schedule, the Dodgers have the best record in baseball at 22-8 and sit four games ahead of the second place San Diego Padres in the National League West.

There are 30 teams in the two major leagues. The next best records of 20-10 are found in the American League and are owned by both the Minnesota Twins and Oakland Athletics.

One of my birthday presents
finally arrived via Amazon


I fell in love with Sicily's
Pasta al Nero when we lived
there in 2008 and 2009

Unfortunately, it is next to impossible to find it in Italian restaurants in America.

Now that we have a recipe, can we find all of the ingredients?

I supported President Obama
with my vote in 2008 and 2012

I don't think that he was America's all-time best President but he was much better than some other recent ones that come to mind.

His oratory was certainly worth hearing during the recent Democratic National Convention.

I truly wish that we can
SOMEHOW regain this level
of civility in America SOON!

 While California is indeed en fuego,
Ventura County where we live is
OK for now

We fell in LOVE with this movie
this week

One of the reasons that I have decided not to return to full time EuroBall coaching is not wanting to miss anymore of our grandkids special moments.

On Saturday we had one of those.

Grandson Jacob was taking an
important day in his
religious upbringing

This should have happened last April but Coronavirus got in the way so it was rescheduled in a safer environment.

Jacob is usually not this angelic

GQ model in training?

Mary LOVES her brother!


 Vanessa and Mike with
Mary and Jacob

All of these photos were taken in the morning before Jacob's First Communion Mass.

Because of Coronavirus, the Mass was held outdoors to enhance social distancing.

Unfortunately, it also meant that attendance was limited.

Each child was only allowed to have four more people in attendance. The four would be their two parents and their two Godparents.

This meant that once again we would miss a key moment in Jacob's life even though we were back in the USA.


On the positive side, Santa Clara Catholic Church in Oxnard did stream the Mass live on the internet so we got to "attend" the Mass in virtual space.

The view of the
First Communicants on-line

Jacob receiving his
First Communion on-line

Nice wave.

Jacob got to celebrate both his
birthday and First Communion
twice this weekend

On Saturday, he got together with Vanessa's side of the family and then reprised his celebration with us on Sunday.

Thus is life in these Covid-19 times . . .

 Monday was Grandson Kevin's
first day of Third Grade
in Las Vegas

Kevin was the first one of our three grandchildren back in a virtual learning environment this school year.

Our son Andrew related this story about Kevin's first day in school. Class started at 8:30 a.m. with the teacher giving an overview of how things would be organized. At the end, the instructor asked if there were any questions.

There was only one and it was from Kevin.

He wanted to know if they could start class at 9:30 a.m. as this 8:30 a.m. start was just not what he wanted.


That's our Grandson.

Jacob and Mary start school this coming Friday in Camarillo also on-line.

Reading Is FUNdamental!

Another GREAT Inspector Montalbano
thriller based in Sicily

This was the 25th of the 27 published to date Montalbano books.

They are always quick, lively reads that give wonderful insights into life on the island of Sicily.