Should Old Acquaintance…

Dear Jasper and Kestrel,

On Saturday, I woke up to seagulls’ squawks and remembered I was in Monterey. The sun was up, and The Monterey Hotel looked very pretty in the morning light.

I had what the Hobbits call First Breakfast at Red’s doughnuts. This shop has been here for 76 years, and dear Evelyn has been serving goodies and pouring coffee for 26 of them! She is a sweet soul who always finds the good in people.

After a delightful custard filled maple bar and conversation, I wandered around a bit, listening as Garbage trucks, motorcycles, and gathering groups of tourists joined the seagulls in their racket.

I wandered to Rosine’s on Alvarado to meet my dear friend Donald. We met in French class in 2008 and have been teasing and encouraging each other ever since. We chatted about our current reading selections; Goethe for him, Charlotte Bronte for me.

Grandpa Nelson had his own turn at Red’s, then we headed to Salinas to see more friends. Fellow retired teacher Pat and her son John were lively company, as usual.

George and Mimi gave us a yummy tomato gallette and mimosas for brunch.

We stopped by Downtown Books to wish Trish Sullivan a happy birthday, and picked up a copy of The Hobbit for Cousin Liza.

Needless to say, after all this visiting, we needed a rest! We crashed at Uncle David’s place to recharge our social batteries.

Our final step was the Hughes’ household, where we enjoyed cake and both Japanese and French wines. A tour of Rick’s homemade tea house, complete with altar and incense, and a game of catch between Cousin Liza and Kevin, made for a lively evening.

When we were just at the end of our conversation, we hugged everyone goodbye and headed back to the hotel. The road between Salinas and Monterey is pretty, even at night… dark silhouettes of oaks against the soft grey overcast.

More about our adventure tomorrow!


Grandma Judy

Heading South

Dear Jasper and Kestrel,

I usually write this blog to your cousin Liza, but I was with her this weekend, so I will tell you two all about it.

It was your Uncle David’s birthday, so Grandpa Nelson and I took a plane (for the first time in three years!) down to Monterey to help him celebrate. In these Covid times, it was a little scary getting into an enclosed space with so many strangers. But everyone kept their masks on, and the plane wasn’t even very full.

We had a lovely lunch at the Crazy Horse Golf and Country Club.

This very pretty place is owned by Uncle David’s boss Don Chapin and is a perfect place to eat, play with Grandpa Nelson’s hat, or to show how far you can jump.

We drove into town and spent the rest of the day playing catch, eating yummy cheese and crackers, and catching up on family stories with Uncle David and Auntie Olga. This is the sort of dinner visit we used to have every Wednesday evening, and I have missed them!

When the evening was over, we borrowed Uncle David’s car and drove to the Monterey Hotel on Alvarado Street. This place is over a hundred years old! For this evening, however, that didn’t matter. We had flown, driven, eaten and drank all we could, and it was time to sleep.

Whew! That was Friday, and a mighty full day it was. I will tell you about Saturday tomorrow!!


Grandma Judy