Dinner at the Lakeside Cafe in Encino

Dinner at the Lakeside Cafe in Encino, California

NOTE: This Blog is still under construction!
Once again wordpress is acting weird, so we published before the Blog was finished!

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Dinner at the Lakeside Cafe in Encino, California

It’s Thursday night and let’s go out to dinner!
Chinese? Japanese? Deli? Where do you want to go?
I don’t know, someplace different.
Okay, ….

How about the Lakeside Cafe in Encino?

We went there one time for dinner a long time ago, it was soon after they opened in the old El Torito building on Ventura Boulevard (just east of Balboa Blvd) adjacent to Los Encinos State Historic Park with a fantastic view of the lake.

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El Torito Mexican restaurant had been in the same space for years and was an Encino “constant”! After they closed, a couple of other restaurant/bar/club ventures tried to make a “go” of it and failed. And now the tenant is the Lakeside Cafe, a combination coffee house and bar-restaurant and now also a performance space with live jazz and other music.

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El Torito Mexican Restaurant

We went there just for dinner at about 6:30pm. They have Valet Parking for $3.00 in a lot off Ventura and there’s metered street parking that operates 8am-8pm everyday except Sunday. We found a spot on the street and entered through the Valet lot entrance (there’s also an entrance on Ventura).

 

The “Front-of-House” on Ventura is set up like a coffee house.

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Lakeside Cafe “Front-of-House” on Ventura Blvd – Coffee House

 

You can enter the restaurant from Ventura Blvd through the coffee house area and center room. There is additional inside table seating here away from the bar area.

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Lakeside Cafe Center Room, Host Desk Entrance from Valet Lot, Additional Indoor Tables and the Waiting Area as seen from Coffee House side

If you enter through the Valet lot you walk into the center room and arrive at the Host desk and the waiting area. There are couches, a coffee table and benches for additional seating against the wall.

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There is a side guest table as well. Would you care for some literature?

Sunday Brunch, Happy Hour 3pm-6pm, Live Jazz on Saturdays and the Catering Menu are featured on the promotional material available on the guest table, on your table and inside the menu. Quality marketing and promotion is good business (direct to customer inside the restaurant).

The Dining Room, the Bar and the Outdoor Deck Patio on the Lake

The restaurant’s dining room is open to the elements because of the outdoor seating and deck. It was a lovely evening, the doors were open, but as the sun set it got cooler, and then colder due to its location on the lake. We knew this was inevitable and we decided to sit inside the bar area dining room away from the doors when we arrived.

There was a good crowd, but it wasn’t too crowded when we arrived. They have it set up as a “cafe” with wood 4-top tables and nice chairs in the dining room. On our previous visit we sat at a bar table on tall stools and it was not comfortable. The dining areas are wide open, so it has a cafeteria vibe where you’re eating with everyone in the room. Also, there are only hard surfaces indoors (wood floor and glass windows), so it gets really loud inside even when it’s not crowded. I would not recommend trying to have a romantic dinner inside, although it might be nice place for a rendezvous outside during the afternoon or on a warm summer night.

There is a small covered outdoor deck patio, which is separate from the other outdoor seating by the lake. It would be nice for having a small private cocktail or dinner party.

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They have a very nice bar, unfortunately it takes up a lot of space in the Dining Room area, and makes the dining room part of the bar area, adding a lot of traffic and noise to the room.

NOTE: There is a DISCLAIMER NOTICE in the menu!

 

 

Outdoor Seating – Dining Al Fresco on the Lake!

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The Lake and the Dining Room Entrance from the Outdoor Seating Area

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There’s outdoor seating by the lake, which is a beautiful place to dine al fresco on a warm San Fernando Valley day or night. Be sure to read the Disclaimer in the menu though!

The Dinner Menu and Bar Offerings:

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Cocktails $12?
It’s a nice place, but they have “westside” prices in the heart of the valley!
The food was good, but their food items and drinks are expensive compared to many other neighborhood restaurants, which is probably the reason we haven’t been back since the first time we ate here. We most likely would have ordered drinks otherwise.

On The Menu: fried calamari, a Santa Fe salad, fettucine chicken alfredo and a coke

The calamari was excellent, lightly fried and crispy/chewy! The Santa Fe salad was good, but The Cheesecake Factory’s salad dressing is the standard to which all other Santa Fe salads are compared. This one “not as good”. And the fettucine chicken alfredo was tasty, but just a little bland. The thin sliced chicken and pasta was cooked perfectly, which is sometimes hard to accomplish with a pasta sauce. The service was only okay, it was a little scattered and could have and should have been better. Our entrees arrived pretty soon after the appetizer (while we were still eating the calamari), which is good for fast service, but bad in relation to “timing the meal”. Nothing to really be upset about though.

According to the literature, they have Sunday Brunch and Happy Hour at the bar 3pm-6pm. They have live music on Saturdays and they do catering too.

Here’s their Catering Menu:

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Lakeside Cafe Catering Menu

Lakeside Cafe16817 Ventura Blvd., Encino, California 91436
818-616-2430  www.lakesidecafe.com @LakesideEncino

Read our previous Blog Los Encinos Park

Use the links below to FOLLOW and LIKE us on other social media!
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Visit & Win at the Lakeside Cafe!

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Once again it’s WineWednesday! “We Be Chillin’!”

Once again it’s #WineWednesday! “We Be Chillin’!”

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#WineWednesday! “We Be Chillin’!”

What happened to March? Tempus fugit (Time flies…)
What happened to TODAY? How is it 11am and I haven’t done anything?

I woke up with a headache.
Actually one of the puppies woke me up to tell me it was time for breakfast.
I had a morning cup of espresso and a glass of orange juice (not from concentrate).
My head still hurts.

The television is on, but the volume is off <MUTE>.
The puppies are sleeping. One is under my desk, the other is laying in the pen.
NOTE: I took their pictures and this is almost “real time”:

It’s also “Gardener Wednesday”, so there will be leaf blowers and lawn mowers.
Construction continues next door. They will never be done.
Right now I’m sitting here in silence.

I haven’t eaten anything yet today.
Last night I made spaghetti with meat sauce, a salad and garlic bread:

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I’m thinking pan-fried leftover spaghetti with meat sauce for brunch. Be right back.

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Almost “real-time” Pan-fried Leftover Spaghetti with Meat Sauce

Spaghetti and an iced espresso and an aspirin for brunch.
It’s currently 80 degrees outside in the San Fernando Valley.
And the time is 11:49am Pacific Standard Time.
Now a word from our SPONSOR:

Your-Name-Here

YOUR NAME HERE! SPONSOR JOSHWILLTRAVEL! Contact Us!

So we cooked and ate the spaghetti, drank the iced espresso and took the aspirin.

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Blue Sky with Contrails Wednesday at Noon

And the puppies went outside and so I did too.
And it’s getting warmer. And I still have a headache.

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Wednesday Noon – Puppies Chillin’ on the Patio in the Sun

“The Chew” is just too loud today.


On Sunday we went out to the Paramount Ranch in Agoura, California for the annual Renaissance Faire Reunion and it was a beautiful day!

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Sunday in the Park – Paramount Ranch in Agoura, California

We uploaded about 200 new pics of people and places from the past and from our Sunday adventure. Everything was very green! It was cloudy and then clear, so there are a lot of great pics from the gathering. Here are just three (and the one above) for now:

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We’ll be creating a Blog with the pics from the Reunion in the very near future. And you can check out our previous Blog “Return to the Paramount Ranch” for pics from 2013 and 2014.


Wednesday 12:20pm: And they’re down again

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It’s a Dog’s Life! Wednesday 12:20pm

12:35pm: The gardeners are here, the leaf blowers are blowing and the dogs are barking….
MY HEAD FEELS LIKE IT’S GOING TO EXPLODE (did you ever see “Scanners”?)

MORE TO COME…..maybe. (The time is now 12:45pm)

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“The Dude and Trump have a lot in common…
both have bathrobes, both obsessed with their rugs, and they both love White Russians”
– Seth Meyers 3-28-17

And we’re back! 5pm:
I crashed about 1pm, slept for about 3 hours and then woke up, and still had a headache, but it wasn’t as bad. It’s beautiful and very bright outside today. Windy and warm! I know this because  were just there with the puppies…outside that is.

So we are up and we have an iced espresso, and the dogs have been outside, and they are now laying down again waiting for their suppertime.

p.s. Your internet history was just sold by the Republicans in Congress!
You have NO PRIVACY!
The Republicans in Congress are in the pockets of BIG CORPORATIONS and have put CORPORATE PROFITS over their sworn duty to provide PUBLIC PROTECTION AND PRIVACY!
Your ISP Provider can now sell your info to anyone without your permission!
(the new FCC regulations the Republican Congress just removed
would have required consumer consent and permission)

And don’t worry about that stuff about the Russians….
probably nothing, just “fake news”.

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WHAT THE F*CK?!!! HOW IS THIS NOT NOT BEING INVESTIGATED BY CONGRESS? 
If you’re a Republican, you might want to take another look at your guys. Just sayin’.

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THIS MAN IS A TRAITOR FROM CALIFORNIA! LOCK HIM UP!

Seriously,
RIGHT CLICK “OPEN IN NEW WINDOW and then LIKE
TELL THE USA TO DUMP TRUMP on facebook>
http://www.facebook.com/usadumptrump

And it’s 6pm and time for the puppies to eat. Thanks for reading our Blog today!

Use the links below to FOLLOW and LIKE us on other social media!
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RETURN TO HOMEPAGE> http://www.joshwilltravel.wordpress.com
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From the interweb game that’s going around for “Book Week”, we shared this except on a friend’s timeline and also thought we would share it here:

Wear no clothing emblazoned with opinions or exhortations.
If you own any T-shirts with such legends as “I’m with Stupid” or “100% Bitch” or “Nobody Knows Me Like Cosmo” please put this book down and back away slowly.

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Read It, Learn It, Live It.

Esquire’s “Things A Man Should Know About Style”
by Scott Omelianuk and Ted Allen (recently found this cool book in Storage)



 

GBTA 2013 Convention in San Diego! (Global Business Travel Association)

GBTA 2013 Convention in San Diego! (Global Business Travel Association)

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NOTE: For ThrowbackThursday and FlashbackFriday we found this Blog draft. We laid out all the type and captions back in 2013 and never added the pics or details. So we went to the files for collateral from the convention, found old travel picture files on our other laptop for pictures that were never seen and also went hunting for the pics that we had already downloaded or posted, then we filled in all the details we could remember and constructed this Blog! And even though the event happened in 2013 we still hope you will enjoy this Blog for TravelTuesday in 2017!

We were invited to attend the GBTA 2013 Convention as a “Hosted Buyer”, but we had prior commitments and could only attend the first and second day of the event. So we made a one-night hotel reservation and arranged to attend the “preview day” on Sunday and the first day on Monday.

GBTA 2013 Convention Schedule for Sunday and Monday:
(Vendor Parties not shown) CLICK to SEE A LARGER PIC!

Road Trip to San Diego! – Ride along with me!

It was a foggy Sunday morning when we woke up very early and hit the road to San Diego. We left the San Fernando Valley at 7am to avoid traffic and drove south on the 405 and 5 freeways for about three hours. We were successful and drove fast (we also took pictures as we went) but other drivers were driving really fast! We were really amazed at the speed of some of the cars passing us at very high speeds like we were parked.

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GBTA 2013! – On The Road to San Diego (405 freeway south to 5 freeway south)

Ride along with me to San Diego, just click on the pics below:

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GBTA 2013! – Downtown San Diego

Embassy Suites Hotel Downtown San Diego (A Hilton Hotel)

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GBTA 2013! – Embassy Suites Hotel Downtown San Diego

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GBTA 2013! – Embassy Suites Hotel Downtown San Diego Atrium & Skylight

We arrived in San Diego and found our hotel, the Embassy Suites Downtown, sometime after 9am. We found metered street parking two blocks away from the hotel which was FREE and available because it was Sunday. We walked over to the hotel, had breakfast at the complimentary buffet and got an early check in.

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GBTA 2013! – Breakfast Buffet at the Embassy Suites Hotel Downtown San Diego

We went up to the room, checked it out and dropped our luggage. We set up the laptop, hooked into the hotel’s wi-fi and did our morning business via the internet and cell phone.

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After a short time in the room, we walked over to the Hyatt Regency and caught the Free Shuttle to the Convention Center.

Sunday was a “preview” day, so it was not very crowded, just busy. There were a lot of people checking in and the vendors and staff were making preparations for the week ahead. The Exhibition Hall didn’t open until Monday, but we were invited to the “First-Timers” lunch and the Welcome Party at the Hilton on Sunday evening.

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GBTA 2013! Global Business Travel Association Convention in San Diego

We rode the shuttle to the Convention Center, walked to Check-In, checked in and got our credentials, and then we walked to the “first timers” lunch in an adjacent meeting hall.

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GBTA 2013! – San Diego Convention Center

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GBTA 2013! – “First Timers” Lunch, Orientation and Welcome

On The Menu: Turkey sandwich with mozzarella cheese balls, lettuce & tomato and a slice of apple pie with iced tea, water and coffee

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After lunch, we attended the “Going Global” session, walked around the Convention Center and then we walked to the shuttle pickup point, rode the shuttle back to the Hyatt and then walked back to our hotel. We cleaned up and enjoyed a free cocktail and complimentary appetizers at the Embassy Suites’ afternoon Happy Hour downstairs.

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GBTA 2013 Welcome Reception Party Buffet at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront

After the Happy Hour we drove over to the Hilton Bayfront Hotel and paid $15 to park for the Welcome Reception and Party on the Great Lawn which runs along the Marina.  An outdoor evening buffet for 7000 people or so, with beer/wine and magaritas at the bar.

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GBTA 2013! – Hilton Bayfront Hotel in San Diego

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GBTA 2013! – Hilton Bayfront Hotel in San Diego

NOTE: It was a huge convention! Every hotel in San Diego remotely close to the Convention Center was at capacity and filled with Travel Agents, Vendors, Travel Writers and other attendees from all over the United States and other parts of the world. We commented on the size of the crowd to a staff person at the Convention Center and they just laughed because Comic-Con had been in town the week before and the size of GBTA convention wasn’t even close to the overflow crowd for Comic-Con.

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GBTA 2013 Welcome Reception Party on the Great Lawn – the Hilton Bayfront Hotel in San Diego

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GBTA 2103 Welcome Reception Party on the Great Lawn – the Hilton Bayfront Hotel in San Diego

On The Menu at the Welcome Reception Party Buffet at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront:
Buffalo chicken meatballs, lamb meatballs in a tomato sauce, pasta in lobster sauce, pita chips and a bunch of types of hummus, prime rib sliders with cheese, chicken potstickers, veggie potstickers, pork potstickers, other stuff too, and then on to the dessert table! Nice truffle selection, chocolate covered strawberries, candy lollipops in a bunch of weird flavors and mini-pastries…

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GBTA 2013! – Sunset Over A Sea of Travel Industry at the Hilton Bayfront Hotel in San Diego

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We walked to over to Roy’s Hawaiian Fusion Restaurant for the next party. It was a long “Las Vegas” walk just after dark along the Marina and Bayfront to get to Roy’s, but it was worth it! We immediately regretted eating at the Welcome Party Buffet, because there was an amazing assortment of incredible food at Roy’s!

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GBTA 2013! – The Kitchen at Roy’s Hawaiian Fusion Restaurant in San Diego

There were all kinds of sushi and cut rolls, egg rolls, chicken and beef satay skewers, Hawaiian style ribs, other tasty appetizers and finger foods, fresh fruit and a lot of fancy desserts. We ate and drank and networked until it got too crowded inside the large restaurant and we didn’t take any pictures (except the one of the kitchen above). We left the party early and took a little food “to go” for later at the hotel. We didn’t want to do anymore walking or make the long dark walk back to the Hilton parking structure, so we negotiated with a pedal cab guy and survived a really fast and wild nighttime ride back to the hotel along the Bayfront for $10+tip.

We walked to our car and drove back to the Embassy Suites. We valet parked our car at the hotel and retired to our hotel room. We did some work, ate the “to go” food (ribs, sushi and little chocolate balls) after midnight and went to bed.

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Monday morning, we were up early and we enjoyed the Embassy Suites’ breakfast buffet again. We took the food up to the room, ate and did some more work, and then packed up our stuff, went downstairs and had a second breakfast. After eating again we got our stuff and checked out of the hotel. We picked up the car from the valet, drove to over the Convention Center and paid to park there. Parking was $15 for all day until midnight.

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GBTA 2013! – Embassy Suites Hotel Breakfast Buffet (in the room)

We arrived in time and got a pretty good seat for the Keynote Address and Lunch for 6000 people with a presentation and performance by singer/songwriter Jewel. All of the front area tables were “Reserved” so we took a seat at a forward table in the first section behind the front area. The hall at the Convention Center was massive! Lunch for 6000 is not an easy task!

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GBTA 2013 Keynote Lunch with Jewel at the San Diego Convention Center

Monday’s GBTA 2013 Keynote Speaker Jewel performs
“Who Will Save Your Soul” live at the San Diego Convention Center

RIGHT CLICK AND “OPEN IN NEW WINDOW” TO VIEW VIDEO>
https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=703198789706690&set=vb.337421319696080&type=2&theater (facebook video)

On The Menu: iceberg lettuce salad, bread & butter, stuffed chicken breast with pesto sauce, vegetables, a fruit tart dessert and iced tea.

After lunch they opened the massive Exposition Hall which ran the entire length of the Convention Center and was filled with Vendors and Suppliers. There were also Vendor meetings scheduled for the afternoon. We walked a portion of the Exhibition Hall, collected brochures/information/swag and received invitations to events later on that evening and later in the week. It would have been impossible to cover the whole Exhibition Hall in one day, so we didn’t try. Instead we did what we could between 3-6pm and dropped all the promotional material in our car before beginning the evening activities.

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GBTA 2013! – The Gaslamp District Sign in San Diego

The Gaslamp District!
The Historic Heart of San Diego is located across the street and train tracks from the Convention Center. Bars, clubs, restaurants, hotels and plenty of gift shops are within easy walking distance (unless you’ve already walked all day).

Let’s get this party started!
We were invited to eight different parties happening at different locations around the Gaslamp District and the Bayfront near the Convention Center.

Monday Party # 1 – Sunset cocktails and dinner at the Altitude Lounge

Our first invitation was for a party at the Altitude Lounge on top of the Marriott Gaslamp Hotel. We walked over to the Marriott Hotel next door to the Convention Center, but it was the wrong Marriott. So then we walked over to the Gaslamp District and found the right hotel. We ate and drank and watched the sunset from the rooftop patio.

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Excellent view of San Diego and Mission Bay from the outdoor patio!

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GBTA 2013! View from the Altitude Lounge in San Diego

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GBTA 2013! – View of Petco Park from the Altitude Lounge in San Diego

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GBTA 2013! – Sunset in San Diego from the Altitude Lounge

On The Menu: tray passed appetizers and a buffet with eggrolls, beef on toast, beef and chicken satay, tuna on wonton crisp, crab on cracker, pita bread and hummus and more… catered by Flemings Steakhouse!

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Monday Party #2 –
We crashed The Parking Spot Party at Lou & Mickey’s at the Gaslamp

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GBTA 2013! – The Parking Spot Party at Lou & Mickey’s at the Gaslamp

We left the party and walked across the street and crashed The Parking Spot’s party at Lou & Mickey’s restaurant. We ate and drank and met the nice folks from The Parking Spot and told them we crashed their party. They didn’t mind. Their party ended early, and the place emptied as the crowd left for other parties that were just getting started.

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Monday Party #3 – GBTA 2013 “AMPED” Party at the Hard Rock Hotel San Diego!

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GBTA 2013! – Stevie Ray Vaughn’s Guitar at the Hard Rock Hotel San Diego

We walked over to our next event: the AMPED party at the Hard Rock Hotel! We ate and drank and met a bunch of really nice people. It started slow but soon the crowd at the main bar was five people deep, the music was rockin’ and it got pretty hopping.

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This party was on a very large rooftop patio, with several permanent bars, a couch area with fire pits and portable heaters, several floating bars and a bunch of buffet stations with a great selection of food. There was good music, of course, and a stage was set up for performance, but it didn’t get used until later. There was even a photo booth for taking pictures with silly wigs, hats and props.

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GBTA 2013! – Buffet Station at the AMPED Party at the Hard Rock Hotel

We asked permission before taking these pics of one of the Go-Go Dancers on a raised pedestal (there were several). She said “Go ahead, I don’t see why not” and posed for the first one. And she was a fantastic dancer too!

Monday Party #4 – Level Skye Club at the Andaz Hotel in San Diego!

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GBTA 2013! – The Bar at Level Skye Club at the Andaz Hotel in San Diego

We had one more party to check out or we would have just stayed at the Hard Rock, instead we left the hotel and walked over to Level Skye Club at the Andaz Hotel. We walked a lot and we were wearing our dress shoes, so by the end of the night our feet were really hurting. We were also tired from a long day at the convention and a long night of partying.
When we got to the club the upstairs was deceptively quiet because downstairs in the basement it was raging! The party at Level Skye was really “off-the-hook” with funky dance music and lots of light and a lot of drunk travel agents. Travel industry people love to party! Thanks American Express!

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GBTA 2013! – Big Party at Level Skye Club in the Andaz Hotel Basement in San Diego

We didn’t eat or drink anything alcoholic because we still had to walk back to the car and drive home to Los Angeles. So, Monday late night we walked back to the car on sore feet before they closed the Convention Center Garage for the night (at midnight).

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GBTA 2013! – San Diego Convention Center Parking ($15 all day – closes at midnight)

We drove back to Los Angeles on the 5 freeway north after midnight and hit a impossible “Stop-and-Go” traffic jam along the way because of construction at 2am in the morning.

When we finally made it home after 3am, we unloaded the car and crashed hard. We had a really good time, did a lot of business and networking, saw Jewel play live music, enjoyed our “budget” stay at the Embassy Suites, and ate and drank and danced and partied in San Diego for two days.

NOTE: We did a lot of walking, a whole lot of walking in our dress shoes, so next time we bring and wear more comfortable walking shoes.

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GBTA 2013! – San Diego Convention Center Stairs at Night

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GBTA 2013! – We did not attend GBTA 2014 in Los Angeles

FINAL NOTE: We finished this Blog and hit “PUBLISH” and it did not. WordPress lost the Blog and the draft(s) totally disappeared! We had to use Google Cache to rescue it and then we had to start over and rebuild the original Blog again. Total waste of time. There is a flaw (BUG) in the wordpress program, because when we went looking for help we found that this has happened to other people as well. So, please ENJOY THIS BLOG, a lot of time went into it.



 

UPDATED Wednesday March 29, 2017 – We posted this Blog yesterday!

We collected a bunch of FREE stuff in the short time we were there, two bags full of stuff actually! Most was promotional “paper”: sell sheets, pamphlets, maps and brochures. But there was some fun giveaway stuff and cool “incentives” for visiting certain booths.

We were given a “Swag” bag at check-in provided/sponsored by Delta and the padded bag was very nice. We recently found it in Storage (see our previous Blog about Storage) and we are now using it as a laptop bag.

UPDATED April 5, 2017 – TRAVEL TIP!
We found these “hospitality cards” (restaurant and bar coupons, freebies, come-ons, etc.) from the San Diego trip. We had so much FREE food and drink and were only in town for one night, so we didn’t use any of them. They can be found at the Concierge Desk at the San Diego Convention Center (and these are just a few of the ones available).

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Hospitality Cards (Restaurant and Bar Coupons, Freebies, Come-Ons, etc.)

Pizza Time! Mulberry Street Pizza!

Pizza Time! Mulberry Street Pizza!

Richie Palmer’s Mulberry Street Pizzeria of Beverly Hills est. 1991

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Pizza from Mulberry Street Pizzeria

Thursday night pizza delivery for dinner: $33 + $1.50 tip (~$4.25 per slice)
Not cheap! High quality very large pizza and it was delivered “on time”.

On The Menu: Pizza with pepperoni, sausage and extra cheese.
(and they only have one size – very large)

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Pizza from Mulberry Street Pizzeria

Real New York style thin-crust pizza with pepperoni, sausage and extra cheese!

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Pizza with Pepperoni, Sausage and Extra Cheese from Mulberry Street Pizzeria

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Mulberry Street Pizzeria 17040 Ventura Blvd., Encino, CA 818-906-8881
(there are also other locations in Sherman Oaks and Beverly Hills)
http://www.mulberrypizzeria.com 

 

Use the links below to FOLLOW and LIKE us on other social media!
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They also have a line of Mulberry Street retail food products
available for purchase in-store or online:

combopack


We haven’t written a new restaurant Blog in a long time.
We have written a lot about food lately:

Where’s the Beef
Superbowl 51 with recipes for chicken wings & meatballs

Fun Cooking Recipes posts and Pages (see sidebar)
including Disney Secret Recipes and Kenny Rogers Cookbook Blogs!

And we have updated a few of our past restaurant Blogs recently too.

RIGHT CLICK and “OPEN IN NEW WINDOW” TO VIEW THE BLOGS!>

Sushi Dinner at Cho Cho San http://wp.me/p3dhVM-20S

Sushi Time at Okumura http://wp.me/p3dhVM-1Xm

Dinner at the Valley Inn in Sherman Oaks http://wp.me/p3dhVM-1Pp

Dinner at the NoHo Diner in North Hollywood http://wp.me/p3dhVM-20z

Dinner at Uncle Bernie’s Delicatessen in Encino http://wp.me/p3dhVM-31l

Dinner at Taj Mahal Cuisine of India in Encino  http://wp.me/p3dhVM-13W

Dinner at Mucho Mas Mexican Restaurant in NoHo http://wp.me/p3dhVM-2Vc 

Dinner at Uncle Bernie’s Delicatessen in Encino http://wp.me/p3dhVM-31l

Return to Paramount Ranch Park – Agoura, California: Part 2 Hiking the Site

Return to Paramount Ranch Park in Agoura, California:
Part 2 Hiking the Site
Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area

NOTE: If you’ve been redirected here via a link from Agoura Renaissance Faire, please FOLLOW and LIKE this page and our facebook and Twitter pages.

See our other Blogs about the Faire and the Paramount Ranch for more pics! Use the SEARCH BOX at the top of the page and SEARCH: PARAMOUNT RANCH^^^^^^^^^

ARE YOU READY?
THEN, LET’S BEGIN! …Take a little trip on ThrowbackThursday!

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101 Freeway – Kanan Rd Exit (watch out for the California Highway Patrol!)

In 1927, Paramount Studios purchased a 2,700-acre ranch on Medea Creek in the Santa Monica Mountains, It is now the Paramount Ranch Park and part of the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area.

Exit at Kanan Rd off the 101 freeway, go west past Agoura Rd, make a left on Cornell Rd and follow it to the Paramount Ranch park entrance. Admission is FREE, Parking is FREE.

The Paramount Ranch is Open 8am to Sunset in Agoura, California

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Leaving Los Angeles: 101 Freeway – Kanan Rd exit to Agoura, California

NOTE: You may experience heavy traffic at the Kanan Rd exit on weekend “Beach Days” or if there is an event at one of the wineries or during rush hour traffic periods. Plan Ahead!
(And the Banjo & Fiddle Festival and other events are still held at the Paramount Ranch)

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Kanan Road and Cornell Road (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)

As you approach the Paramount Ranch Park entrance, after you pass the Fire Station, you will enjoy a great view of the park’s landscape and the old racetrack from Cornell Rd.

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Paramount Ranch – Parking Lot (Phredd’s Meadow) from Cornell Road

The Paramount Ranch Racetrack

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In 1956, the owner of Paramount Ranch decided to build a road-racing facility. He approached Ken Miles and Dick Van Laanen to design the road course. They designed a paved road course nearly 2 miles in length. The road course included 11 turns with uphill and downhill sections, a straightaway just shy of ¾ mile, a bridge and underpass as well as a lake opposite the start/finish line. Most of the drivers were weekend racers and the lack of safety features along with dangerous curves were more risk than they were willing to take for a hobby. The racetrack was a two mile figure eight course with a bridge between turns 3 and 4. The racetrack pits and grandstand were located on the current parking lot. Bob Bondurant described the course as “unforgiving but a real challenge”. A total of seven races were held at Paramount Ranch. Five events were sponsored by the California Sports Car Club (CSCC) and two by the United States Auto Club (USAC). After several drivers were killed on the track (3 on the same day) it was closed in 1957. 

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Paramount Ranch – Racetrack and the Old Parking Lot

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Paramount Ranch – Racetrack and the Old Parking Lot

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Paramount Ranch – Racetrack and the Old Parking Lot

The National Park Service maintains the entire ranch including the racetrack as a historic site. Very little remains of the racetrack as of 2015, the bridge still remains however it has been blocked off so vehicles cannot drive over it and the road underneath the bridge is overgrown with trees and shrubs. Home construction on the neighboring hillsides has caused water runoff erosion that destroyed the original layout and terrain of the land. Much of the road is no longer there. There is some sentiment among park rangers to repair the circuit and return the track to its former glory, but there are no plans in the foreseeable future. The Paramount Ranch Racetrack is featured in several movies filmed in the 1950’s and 1960’s: “Road Racers” (1959), “How to Stuff a Wild Bikini” (1965), “Devil’s Hairpin” (1957), “Spin Out” with Elvis Presley (1965), “Munster Go Home” (1966), “The Love Bug” (1968) and “Herbie Rides Again” (1974).

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Paramount Ranch – Next Right

Enter the Paramount Ranch Park from Cornell Rd,
turn left at the bottom of the main entrance and park near the Ranger Station.

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Paramount Ranch Park Entrance – “Top O’ the Main”

The park is open 8am to Sunset everyday! Take a tour of Western Town, visit the Western Town Meadow and then enter the park proper and the hiking trails on the other side.

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Paramount Ranch – Western Town: Open 8am to Sunset


Western Town! Read the previous Blog:
“Return to Paramount Ranch – Agoura, California: Part 1 Western Town” to see more pics>
RIGHT CLICK ON THE LINK BELOW AND “OPEN IN NEW WINDOW” TO VIEW!

RIGHT CLICK ON THE PIC AND “OPEN IN NEW WINDOW” TO VIEW THE LINK!


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Paramount Ranch – Oak Tree in Western Town Meadow

NOTE: These pics are from a couple years back.
The Western Town pics are in the previous Blog>
“Return to Paramount Ranch – Agoura, California: Part 1 Western Town”

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Paramount Ranch – Western Town Bridge from the Meadow

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Paramount Ranch – Western Town Oak Tree (copyright 2013 JoshWillTravel)


Ye Olde Renaissance Faire Site

We walked the site and here are some selected pictures:

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Paramount Ranch – Front of Faire and Front Gate Area

CLICK ON PIC FOR LARGER PIC>

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Paramount Ranch – Finance Hill from the Bridge/Berm

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Paramount Ranch – Finance Hill

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Paramount Ranch – Gaming Hill

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Paramount Ranch – Gaming Hill

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Paramount Ranch – View from Gaming Hill, MainStage to Your Left

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Paramount Ranch – MainStage from Gaming Hill

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Paramount Ranch – Low Road from Gaming Hill

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Paramount Ranch – Olde Oak Tree

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Paramount Ranch – Olde Oak Trees

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Paramount Ranch – Twilziwop, Drench-A-Wench, Children’s Dell & The Washing Well

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Paramount Ranch – Washing Well, Twilziwop & Drench-A-Wench

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Paramount Ranch – Drench-A-Wench/Soak-A-Bloke Site

We will be adding more to this Blog and there will most likely be a Part 2 coming soon.
We just wanted to post this before this year’s annual reunion. More to come! Enjoy!

All photos copyright 2013, 2014, 2016 and 2017 JoshWillTravel

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Western Town! Read the previous Blog
“Return to Paramount Ranch – Agoura, California: Part 1 Western Town”>

https://joshwilltravel.wordpress.com/2013/04/14/return-to-paramount-ranch-01-apr-13-part-1-western-town/

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Paramount Ranch – “Days of Future Past”



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Paramount Ranch – View from the Fire Road towards Gaming Hill

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Paramount Ranch – west of the MainStage

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Paramount Ranch – Phredd’s Meadow on a Cloudy Day

The Wabash Cannonball!

The Wabash Cannonball! 

Old.train

“The Wabash Cannonball” is an American folk song about a fictional train, thought to have originated in the late nineteenth century. Its first documented appearance was on sheet music published in 1882, titled “The Great Rock Island Route” and credited to J. A. Roff. All subsequent versions contain a variation of the chorus:

Now listen to the jingle, and the rumble, and the roar,
As she dashes thro’ the woodland, and speeds along the shore,
See the mighty rushing engine, hear her merry bell ring out,
As they speed along in safety, on the “Great Rock-Island Route.”

A rewritten version by William Kindt appeared in 1904 under the title “Wabash Cannon Ball”. The Carter Family made one of the first recordings of the song in 1929, though it was not released until 1932. Another popular version was recorded by Roy Acuff in 1936. The song has been covered many times by many artists over the years.

From the great Atlantic ocean to the wide Pacific shore
From the queen of flowing mountain to the south bell by the shore
She mighty tall and handsome and know quite well by all
She’s a combination on the Wabash Cannonball

She came down from Birmingham one cold December day
As she rolled in the station you could hear all the people say
There is a girl form Tennessee she long and she tall 
She came down from Birmingham on the Wabash Cannonball

Our the western states are dandies so the people all ways say 
From New York to St. Louis and Chicago by the way
From the hills of Minnesota where the rippling waters fall
No changes to be taken on the Wabash Cannonball 

Here’s to daddy Claxton may his name forever stand 
And always be remembered in the courts of Alabam
His earthly race is over and as the curtain around him fall
We’ll carry him Home in victory on the Wabash Cannonball

Listen to the jingle the rumble and the roar 
As she glides along the woodland through the hills and by the shore 
hear the rush of the mighty engine hear the lonesome hobos call 
You’re traveling through the jungle on the Wabash Cannonball

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The Wabash Cannonball 698

The song “The Wabash Cannonball” is part of
The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s 500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll list!

There was a “Wabash Cannonball” Rollercoaster at the Opryland USA Theme Park 1975-1997:

It is a signature song of the Stephen F. Austin State University Lumberjack Marching Band, the Kansas State University Marching Band, the University of Texas Longhorn Band, and of the Indiana State University Marching Sycamores, as ISU is close to the Wabash River. It was also used as the theme song by the USS Wabash (AOR5). There was a B-17 Bomber that flew in World War II named The Wabash Cannonball and Lionel Toys produced a signature named train set.

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Lionel Wabash Cannonball Train Set

NOTE: The train was named after the song, not the other way around!
In the wake of the song’s popularity, the Wabash Railroad named its express run between Detroit and St. Louis as the Wabash Cannonball 1949 – 1971.

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Wabash ‘Cannonball’ Steam Locomotive 2800 at Pine Junction 26 October 1947 Harry Zilmer/ Strombeck Collection.

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Wabash Cannonball GP7 475 two tone grey & blue with the flag herald Springfield, Illinois 15 August 1965

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The Wabash Cannonball!

Benny Martin, John Hartford & Roy Huskey (this is great!)

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HAAPPY SAAINT PAATRICK’S DAAY!

HAAPPY SAAINT PAATRICK’S DAAY!

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! MARCH 17th is always St. Patrick’s Day!

“Wherever you go and whatever you do,
May the luck of the Irish be there with you.”

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“Here’s to being single… Drinking doubles… And seeing triple!”

First, a very important message for all my Friends:
PLEASE 
DRINK RESPONSIBLY!
GET HOME ALIVE, DO NOT DRINK AND DRIVE!
“KNOW WHEN TO SAY WHEN!”
“FRIENDS DON’T LET FRIENDS DRIVE DRUNK!”

“May the rocks in your field turn to gold.”

Saint Patrick’s Day is a cultural and religious holiday celebration held on March 17, the traditional death date of Saint Patrick (385–461), the patron saint of Ireland.

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“May the sun shine warm upon your face and the rains fall soft upon your fields.”

Saint Patrick’s Day was made an official Christian feast holy day in the early 17th century and is celebrated in more countries than any other national festival!

“May the leprechauns be near you, 
To spread luck along your way. 
And may all the Irish angels, 
Smile upon your St. Patrick’s Day.”

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“Here’s to a sweetheart, a bottle, and a friend. 
The first beautiful, the second full, the last ever faithful.”

“To all the days here and after 
May they be filled with fond memories, happiness, love and laughter.”

Historically, religious restrictions (due to Lent) on eating and drinking alcohol were lifted for Saint Patrick’s Day, which led the holiday’s tradition of alcohol consumption.

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Holiday celebrations involve going to church, public parades & festivals, parties known as cèilidhs, consumption of alcohol, drinking green beer and/or Irish whiskey with friends, prominent displays and “the wearing of the green” and/or shamrocks (three and four leaf clovers).

“May you taste the sweetest pleasures that fortune ere bestowed, 
and may all your friends remember all the favors you are owed.”

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“May the hinges of our friendship never grow rusty.”

“Four blessings upon you… 
Older whiskey, Younger women, Faster horses, More money”

Fresh beer

“It is better to spend money like there’s no tomorrow
than to spend tonight like there’s no money!”

Saint Patrick’s Day has become an International Holiday with parades and celebrations around the world. They get drunk in Tokyo, Japan too!

“May your mornings bring joy
and your evenings bring peace…
May your troubles grow less
as your blessings increase!”

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We like Single Malt Scotch Whisky.

“I have known many and liked not a few,
I’ve loved only one and this toast’s to you.”

“Best while you have use of your breath 
There is no drinking after death!”

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“May the winds of fortune sail you, May you sail a gentle sea. 
May it always be the other guy who says ‘this drink’s on me’.”

“A bird with one wing can’t fly.” (So have another drink!)

The Notre Dame Leprechaun is the official mascot of the Fighting Irish sports club at the University of Notre Dame since 1965. It was designed by artist Theodore W. Drake for $50 in 1964.

The Fighting Irish logo is a side view of The Leprechaun with his fists up, ready to fight. The live version is a student dressed in a cutaway green suit and Irish country hat. He carries a shillelagh (a wooden club), leads cheers, interacts with the crowd and supposedly brings magical powers and good luck to the team. (“RUDY! RUDY! RUDY!”)

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“Who’s the WILDMAN now?”

“May the luck of the Irish 
Lead to the happiest heights 
And the highway you travel 
Be lined with green lights.”

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“May the Four Winds Blow Them Safely Home”

“Merry met, and merry part, 
I drink to thee with all my heart.”



 

Beware the Ides of March!

 

Beware the Ides of March! – March 15th, 2017

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“Et tu Brute?” – Julius Caesar

Gaius Julius Caeser (July 13, 100 BC – March 15, 44 BC)

Caesar:
Who is it in the press that calls on me?
I hear a tongue, shriller than all the music, Cry ‘Caesar!’
Speak; Caesar is turn’d to hear.

Soothsayer:
Beware the Ides of March.
– Shakespeare

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Shakespeare Doodle by JoshWillTravel

“CLAP YOUR HANDS! STOMP YOUR FEET! 
LOT’S OF LOVIN’ ON HAPPY STREET!”

“Everybody come on yeah, yeah, yeah on Happy Street!”
(Little Stevie Wonder from Muscle Beach Party 1964)

And it’s WineWednesday again! Time for a Toast!

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WineWednesday Again. CHEERS!

 

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The Adorable Cuteness of Puppies!

Puppy Update: They are doing great! They have the best life!
Such good little girls! They are totally spoiled, but in the best way.

Yesterday was Pi Day!
March 14 (3.14) is always Pi Day!
“π” = 3.14159265359….

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Cherry Pie for Pi Day!

The number π is a mathematical constant, the ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter, commonly approximated as 3.14159. It has been represented by the Greek letter “π” since the mid-18th century, though it is also sometimes spelled out as “pi”.

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Apple Pie a la mode (double vanilla ice cream)

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“We love pie!”

3.141592653589793238462643383279502884197169399375105820974944592307816….

Marge’s CHOCOLATE CHIP PIE
(my friend Mark Teich’s Mom, pics above by Mark)

1. mix 1 cup sugar and 1/2 cup flour
2. add 1 stick butter (melted and cooled a bit), 2 slightly beaten eggs,
1 cup semi -sweet chocolate chips and 1 tsp vanilla
3. pour into a unbaked pie shell
4. bake 1 hour at 325 (test with toothpick when done)
5. serve with whipped cream or cool whip (my fave)

This recipe and MORE FUN RECIPES can be found in a previous Blog>
https://joshwilltravel.wordpress.com/2017/01/16/more-fun-recipes/

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This used to be our playground…..

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Annie on the Patio in San Jose, California

 




 

 

SPRING FORWARD! FULL MOON!

SPRING FORWARD! HAPPY PURIM! FULL MOON!

Who? Who? The Owl cries.
Over and over it calls.
Who is it seeking?

DAYLIGHT SAVINGS TIME, SET YOUR CLOCKS AHEAD AN HOUR!

Went to a funeral for a friend on Friday.
We learned March 10th is known among Gamers as “Mario Day” because MAR 10.
And so it was fitting that our old friend Mario’s funeral was March 10th.

“For the wind passeth over it, and it is gone.” – Psalms 103:16

The funeral service was held in a Catholic church “over the hill” in Simi Valley. It was followed by a short service at the burial site in a nearby cemetery and a reception at the family home. There was a large turnout of friends and family on a sad and beautiful Friday morning.

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The 23 Freeway to Simi Valley, California

We drove north from the San Fernando Valley on the 101 freeway to Thousand Oaks and the 23 freeway and then into the backside of east Simi Valley, a suburban community in Los Angeles and Ventura counties. It’s farther away than we remembered.

We arrived on time, parked the car and joined the crowd outside in front of the church. We  saw some of our old friends from the “crazy eighties” for the first time in many years. And also a few friends who were at the New Year’s Eve party, our last celebration with Mario.

The funeral included a Catholic Mass and Communion service, a nice eulogy from his son and tearful biblical readings from his two daughters, and then a lesson/lecture from the priest that went on too long. The wooden pews (benches) are really uncomfortable to sit on for long periods of time and we don’t do a lot of kneeling on a regular basis.

There was pianist who played and sang three hymns and “Avé Maria”  during the service. And one of the young nephews sitting in the 2nd family pew threw up in front of me just as they were starting the communion, which Mario would have thought hilarious! They took the sick kid out and only a few people really noticed.

NOTE: We don’t talk a lot about religion, because we were raised properly in a time when the topics of religion and personal politics weren’t discussed in polite conversation.

It was a nice service. We were there to support the family and mourn our friend Mario. After the church service, we drove over to the cemetery (which was only a few blocks away) and there was a short graveside service. Then after the cemetery service we drove over to the the family house for the reception. We didn’t take pictures at the church. We snapped one pic of the pallbearers carrying the coffin from the hearse to the gravesite before the cemetery service and only took a couple pics of the food when no one was watching at the reception, not wanting to be rude or inappropriate.

At Mario’s reception there were two large identical tables of food and a dessert table. There were chips, drinks (alcoholic & non-alcoholic) and flats of 1/2 size bottled waters too. They served croissant sandwiches, wraps, salads, fruit and more. And there was a sheet cake that read “Aloha Mario Agent 007”. It was a very nice spread!

We paid our respect to the family and stayed longer than we thought catching up briefly with old friends. Tempus fugit! Time flies. The unfortunate circumstance makes the reunion bittersweet and we all have a deep connection to the family and feel their pain and loss. We had to leave because the puppies were left in the crate and we needed to get home for them. So we said our goodbyes and headed home, this time across Simi Valley and then on the 118 east to Desoto Ave, where we filled up the gas tank ($3.05 per gallon!) and then south across the San Fernando Valley on surface streets at rush hour.

At home, we took care of the dogs and crashed hard (mentally and physically tired). We slept for a couple hours, had dinner, started this Blog and then went to sleep.

NOTE: Mario’s obituary and my small tribute are in our previous Blog.

Saturday! Happy Purim!
It was a beautiful day, tempered by the sadness of Friday, and after feeding the dogs early, we went back to sleep. We were hosting a Purim dinner party in the evening, so some of the day was spent in preparation for the event. Our guests came around 6pm and the party ended about 9pm.

Purim is “Jewish Carnivale”, a fun holiday festival held in Spring that commemorates the defeat of a plot to massacre the Jews in ancient Persia (between 465 BC – 424 BC) as recorded in the Old Testament’s Book of Esther. The joyous holiday is celebrated with readings, feasting and merriment! And like most other Jewish holidays, gifts of food are given to the less fortunate and other charitable acts are performed.

Saturday full moon
The owl in the pine tree calls
California!

We went out after the party, stopped at the market and got home after midnight. We made a “late-night” burrito and then went off to bed. And Daylight Savings Time at 2am… we set the clocks ahead and lost an hour of sleep.

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12:30am> Tri-tip, cheese, red rice & bean burrito with avocado and salsa; tortilla chips, avocado, red rice & beans, strawberries, blueberries and raspberries

Sunday, Sunday….
After feeding the dogs early, we went back to bed.
Nothing accomplished all day long, except we made Brunch
and raked the leaves in the backyard. Then we took a nap.

The gardeners were at the house working and installing new backyard lighting all day long, so we had the dogs in the office and numerous other distractions to keep us occupied.

Around 7pm we went out for a nice Sushi Dinner (comfort food) and when we got home we worked on this blog (and see our previous Blog “Procrastination”). And there are more than a few half written Blog posts that still need finishing saved as drafts. We’ve just been sad and uninspired recently due the death of our friends and hearing the news of another friend seriously injured in a traffic accident. The state of our government is really scary. We are trying to remain calm and positive under the circumstances, but we are feeling it.

On the Menu:
Brunch! 2 eggs over medium, bacon, toasted bagel with peanut butter and fresh raspberries, more fresh and fruity raspberries, 3 mini cinnamon rolls, a small glass of orange juice and an iced espresso.
Sushi! Rainbow roll, spicy tuna cut roll, California roll, eel & avocado cut roll and a coke.

A warm night in March
Sushi dinner comfort food
Full moon on Sunday

That was our sad and boring weekend. And we wrote some new haikus too.

Monday Morning 10am: dogs are fed, played with and have been outside, we had a cup of coffee (espresso with mocha mix) and now we have finished this Blog. What does today have in store for us? Find out tomorrow….. or maybe the day after tomorrow!

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Aloha Mario – Agent 007!

 


 

“PROCRASTINATION”

“PROCRASTINATION”
by Fernando Pessoa
FernandoPessoa2

“The day after tomorrow, yes, only the day after tomorrow …
Tomorrow I’ll start thinking about the day after tomorrow,
Maybe I could do it then; but not today …
No, nothing today; today I can’t.
The confused persistence of my objective subjectivity,
The sleep of my real life, intercalated,
Anticipated, infinite weariness—
I’m worlds too weary to catch a trolley—
That kind of soul …
Only the day after tomorrow …
Today I want to prepare,
I want to prepare myself for tomorrow, when I’ll think about the next day …
That’d be decisive.
I’ve already got the plans sketched out, but no, today I’m not making any
plans …
Tomorrow’s the day for plans.
Tomorrow I’ll sit down at my desk to conquer the world;
But I’ll only conquer the world the day after tomorrow …
I feel like crying,
I suddenly feel like crying a lot, inside …
That’s all you’re getting today, it’s a secret, I’m not talking.
Only the day after tomorrow …
When I was a kid the Sunday circus diverted me every week.
Today all that diverts me is the Sunday circus from all the weeks of my
childhood …
The day after tomorrow I’ll be someone else,
My life will triumph,
All my real qualities—intelligent, well-read, practical—
Will be gathered together in a public notice …
But the public notice will go up tomorrow …
Today I want to sleep, I’ll make a fair copy tomorrow …
For today, what show will repeat my childhood to me?
Even if I buy tickets tomorrow,
The show would still really be the day after tomorrow …
Not before …
The day after tomorrow I’ll have the public pose I will have practiced
tomorrow.
The day after tomorrow I’ll finally be what I could never be today.
Only the day after tomorrow …
I’m sleepy as a stray dog’s chill.
I’m really sleepy.
Tomorrow I’ll tell you everything, or the day after tomorrow …
Yes, maybe only the day after tomorrow …
By and by …
Yes, the old by and by …”
Pessoa_1928_Foto_BI

Fernando António Nogueira Pessoa
June 13, 1888 – November 30, 1935
Portuguese poet, writer, literary critic, translator, publisher and philosopher.

 

 

 

 

 

Procrastination (noun)
-the action of delaying or postponing something
-the avoidance of doing a task that needs to be accomplished
-the practice of doing more pleasurable things in place of less pleasurable ones
-carrying out less urgent tasks instead of more urgent ones
-putting off impending tasks to a later time

 

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