|Our Thanksgiving weekend ended with birthday celebrations for Norm and Noelle on Sunday the 29th. Noelle's actual day is Dec. 14th but by then we will be somewhere in the desert in search of sun! A great finale to our 2 month stay in and around the Bay Area with the arrival of Liliana, our newest granddaughter, being the icing on the cake.
The timing of our departure to southern climes seems somehow out of sync with my internal clock though the chill and dampness in the air dictates otherwise. Last year we spent the month of October paying homage to the beautiful state of New Mexico, followed by a month in Benson and Thanksgiving with friends, Rodger and Sharon, at the Escapees Park there. Then we drove all the way back to have Christmas with family. So we'll reverse it this year and have Christmas in Benson!
Some itineraries don't change though as the natural progression always takes us first to Lake Cahuilla in La Quinta, a day and a half's drive from San Francisco. We arrived Tuesday afternoon to a clear, sunny day in the mid-70's. And the routine is pretty much the same: clean and polish and rid our home of road grime, do maintenance and repairs, and meet up with friends, Earl and Gail, who have a winter home in Indio.
We take numerous walks around the lake for both exercise and pictures. The scenery is fantastic, framed by the jagged cliffs of the Santa Rosa mountains. Because it’s filled with water from the Colorado River, the lake holds most of the same fish and anglers with their families and picnic coolers line the banks casting for catfish, bass and trout which are regularly stocked.
Within a short distance just outside the park jeep roads and 4-wheel drive trails have us out climbing rocks, geocaching and doing a bit of hiking. That is until the sky starts turning darker and clouds roll in announcing the imminent arrival of this major storm we've been hearing about.
We had one full day of pouring-down rain, which was nice, until that night the high winds kicked in and we rocked and rolled to the beat of awnings flapping and finally put the slide in before going to bed, rather than losing our precious sleep to get up in the middle of the night! God forbid!
We stayed for week, at a very reasonable $110 (thanks to help from our Passport America membership) before going on to the Anza Borrego desert.