Friday, July 20, 2012

The Day Tom "Sawyered" Anna
Returning to where we last left CA seemed liked the thing to do.  So after big hugs at the airport, Tommy, Anna and I jumped into the Ford Escape with Eric and headed straight to Nick’s Seaside Restaurant in Rock-Away-Beach, Pacifica.  Rock-Away Beach is just as we left it – cold, grey and windy.  Apparently the surfers love it.  Eric says this piece of beach is second to surfing in Hawaii.  Who knew?  

For the time being, we are not the BAT team but the NATs (Nancy, Anna and Tommy).  Bobby is not here – he’s at Philmont stretching his wings, if not his back for the 35-40 lbs he has to carry across Boy Scout’s premiere national high adventure camp for the next two weeks.   But you can see for yourself – he’s not suffering.

Once inside Nick’s Restaurant we choose a booth by the window and proceed to squish Eric in the middle for missing him so much since he’s been gone.    After we bring Eric up to speed on what’s been happening back at home (which really is another story) Eric starts describing our new set-up.  Last year we stayed at The Pines at North Park in San Jose.  We know we’re not going back there but still we’re pretty disappointed.  After all, for four weeks last summer it was our home away from home.  We set up our x-box and computers and jammed away on media entertainment when we were not tooling around CA’s great state and national parks.  Now we are officially nomads traveling from one Synergy corporate apartment to another.   Eric does his best to explain the lay-out of the apartment and how the kids are going to like it just as much.  “You see” he says, “there are two great bedrooms for you to choose from.  One is bigger and has a double bed with its own door leading to the balcony and the other is tucked away upstairs; it’s smaller with only two twin beds.” 

And that’s’ when it happened – Tommy “Sawyered” Anna. 

“Anna, I’ll let you have the bigger room.”

You do remember that part in the story when Tom Sawyer convinced Huckleberry Finn to give him his apple in exchange for white-washing the fence – right?  From here on out, I have a whole new perspective on how to win friends and influence people and it’s not the Dale Carnegie way – it’s Tommy’s Way.

I am still thinking about this until Eric ushers us out of the restaurant, back into the car and says we have time for a short hike before going “home.”  Oh good.  We need something right now to take our minds off of everything.   He takes us to Portola Redwoods State Park where we follow the Iverson trail next to Pescadero Creek for a ½ mile.  Earlier in the day, Eric ran 7 miles here but we choose a naturalist pace in order to stop and look at every banana slug that crossed our path and every wild flower I can name including Trillium and Forget-Me-Not.  J 

By the time we reach our apartment it’s 7 o’clock CA time and we’re exhausted.  But there is only one way to adjust to the time zone quickly and that is to stay up.  And there is only one way to stay up at this point and that is to get ice cream.  And so, we load into the Escape once again and head over to Santana Row – Santa Clara’s poshy retail development that makes me feel a bit like I’m back on Bethesda Row, including the fact that there is NO ice cream store to be found, anywhere!  But they have frozen yogurt – yuck.  “Too tart” says little Blonde riding hood…  (Anna cannot be convinced that yogurt is just like ice cream even if we tell her how it’s not really good for you once you know how much sugar is in this popular frozen replacement.)

I know this first, half-day entry is getting long but I cannot end it before counting the outrageous cars we saw on Santana Row – First a Delorean, then a Tessla, finally four souped up vintage cars that no longer go by their original names – one was converted jeep with an exposed engine, another had ZZ Top flames, the third one had skulls and the last one was a bug sporting fins.