Saturday, March 24, 2018

Lifelong friends together in California!

It's impossible to pinpoint the exact date I met Pam and Lynn, but I think once you've been friends over 30 years, it's safe to label them "lifelong" friends. I'm confident we will be friends forever. Living in three different states, it's not always easy for the three of us to meet in the same place, but in February we were able to do just that for a few days. Lynn arrived in California first and was rested when Pam arrived. We collected Pam from the airport and went directly to the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area, part of the park service.  

The rangers at the visitor center let us know that there is a western town just down the road where TV shows and movies are still filmed. It's called Paramount Ranch Western Town - appropriate and now you know who built it.  A fun spot to wander around. 

The Huntington Library in Pasadena has an odd name. It is not a lending library, but does have some old manuscripts on display. Mostly, it is a gorgeous botanical garden. We joined a free walking tour - sadly, I didn't retain what I was told. I'll have to go again!

We saw lots of interesting plants that were new to me.

The tour lasted longer than the advertised 90 minutes and eventually we excused ourselves. Our appointment at tea had arrived. Some things are more important!

Scones, savories and sweets. All pretty and delicious. 

The Japanese garden was lovely. I particularly liked seeing the display of bonsai trees. So many varieties I'd never seen before. 

perfect with cherry blossoms in bloom
Pam with Gutenberg Bible

We didn't spend a lot of time in the galleries, but enough to see some of the highlights. 

We found this amusing - the California state flag waves, but the US flag sags. Hmm. What does that signify?    

Tom joined us for a wildlife watching boat excursion in the Channel Islands National Park. We didn't dock at any of the islands, but circled Anacapa Island looking at its rocky shores and keeping our eyes open for animals.

It was fun to watch the dolphins playing so close to the boat - they loved the wake we left behind.

dolpins with oil rig in the distance

approaching Anacapa Island

Although they do look dead, the seals are just lounging on the beach. The elephant seals are huge and in the back.  

People on our boat spotted a whale and we saw a bit of the blow. Too bad no big wave of the tail! 

whale blow on the right

back of a shy whale

If you take one of the boats that docks there, you are able to hike to the lighthouse. Maybe another time.
lots and lots of birds and the white stuff that they leave behind

oil rig

back on dry land
walking around Ventura after the boat ride
 After Pam left, Lynn joined Tom and I for an afternoon at the opera. 

on the red carpet

We also had a day to wander around Santa Monica. 

Palisades Park

birds of paradise

There were so many beach volleyball nets! Just a few are in the picture.  Too bad no one was playing. Santa Monica's pier is in the distance.

it's always breezy at the ocean
No matter where we are or what we do, Lynn, Pam and I find fun times. I look forward to more.