Sunday, June 10, 2012

Compression. Not.

How to compress this very. full. day. into one illustrated journal entry.  Can't be done, so I apologize in advance for the super long entry.

It started when I left at 10 to meet Susan from Texas in Old Sacramento.  We were actually meeting at noon and I thought I could stop at SuperCuts on the way and get a much overdue haircut.  But when I got to SuperCuts, there was an hour wait, so I just headed on over to Old Sac anyway.

We were meeting at the Delta King paddle wheeler and I was nearly an hour early, so I took a picture... 

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(I love this boat!)

...and then settled down to wait with what turned out to be a homeless woman, who, among other things, told me she hadn't trusted boats since she learned about the Titanic.
A train was arriving by where I was sitting and as I took this picture...

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...I realized that Susan was on the opposite side of tracks, just out of the frame of this picture, also taking a picture of the train arriving.   We walked down to Joe's Crab Shack (of course) for lunch, where we shivered on the porch watching boats go up and down the river under the Tower Bridge.  It's supposed to be in the 90s, for Pete's sake, and it was freezing (which *I* didn't mind, but Susan was not dressed for cold weather (remember, I said she is fromTexas).

I ordered a crabcake sandwich and was disappointed in it, but the "onion strings" that came with it were fabulous.

We then took the grand tour of Old Sac (which pretty much means going into lots of gift and tsatske shops.   I bought lots of postcards to replenish my supply.

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I took this picture of Susan, as a tourist shot, but I really was taking a picture of the guy in the jacket behind her.  Old Sacramento has become a big biker hot spot and there were bikers all over the place today.

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This one I meant to take.  This is the statue of a Pony Express rider.  Sacramento was one end of the Pony Express (I think St. Joseph, MO was the other).  They hired young riders who had no families, because they assumed many would be killed.  The Pony Express only lasted 18 months, until the transcontinental railroad was completed.

After the statue, we wandered around the Train Museum Shop (deciding NOT to pay the $9 admission to the museum itself.  I found a fascinating book about which I will report when I have finished it.  It is another tale of American History about which I was woefully ignorant.  We then gradually made our way back to the parking lot and garage where we had left our cars and we headed off in our separate directions to take a nap before Part 2 of our big day.

I went to sleep at 3, fully expecting to be awake at 4, but was shocked to realize it was 5 when I woke up.  I was being picked up at 5:15, so I had just 15 minutes to get ready to go.  Fortunately, other than changing my shirt, I didn't really have anything to do.

Beth arrived in the carport at 5:15, in a car with herself, her daughter Katie and our friend Anne (whom I have known forever; I had never met Beth or Katie before).  We drove to get Cindi, who has been Buddy's foster Mom ever since he left our house (he was adopted today!!!).  Cindi's roommate's dog was in the window of the house when we drove up and Anne and Beth leaped out to take its picture, since they see pictures of him on Facebook all the time.  I think I got the best picture, though!

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The five of us (minus the dog) drove to West Sacramento, where we were meeting Susan to begin our River Train ride. The train was kind of out in the middle of nowhere, next to a water treatment plant.   Trying to figure out where to park was a challenge, but we finally did.  We stood around with the other passengers waiting to be told what to do.

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We finally boarded...

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...and were taken to the car where we would have our dinner.  We were seated four on one side and two on the other and there were 3 courses for our dinner, so we switched seating arrangements for each course, so we could each get a chance to visit with everyone by the end of the evening. And since this is a photography group and we are all geeks, we all had our cameras, cell phones and iPods out for the whole trip
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Dinner was ok -- nothing to write home (or a journal entry) about   -- but the best part was just getting to know each other.  Beth and Susan discovered they had practically their whole lives in common and had been at the same place at either the same time or very near the same time all over the place and all over the country.  The coincidences started being a bit creepy.

Anne and I were on the opposite side, enjoying the view of the fields as they passed by.

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(she had to squint because we were heading into the full sunset)

Between the salad and main course, we went up to the observation cars

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(there were 3 observation cars; Katie was the only one in any of them!)
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On the way back to our main course, we stopped to listen to the guy entertaining in the dancing car.  He was alone, except for us (but a small crowd did come to listen to him after the main course.)

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Time to change seats

When we arrived back at our starting point, the crew gave Katie a little Train Bear.

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It was such a fun time.  We didn't go where we thought we were going to go, it probably wasn't worth the money we paid for it, but the friendships forged made it all worthwhile.  (And as Cindi said when we were leaving, "this was the most fun I've ever had at a water treatment plant.")

Tomorrow we are all going to tour the UCD Arboretum and have lunch together before Susan has to head to the airport and back to Dallas.

What a really great day!

1 comment:

Kwizgiver said...

Sounds like a fun adventure!