California Dreamin’ VI (Part I)

Rita’s been home for a month from her two-month long stay in San Marcos.  We have been home for 2 1/2 months from our stay with her.  And I’m about halfway through reporting on it!  Good thing I didn’t go into journalism!

1-6-14-1 - Copy

[After a week of sunning and beaching, The Biddies were up for something a little different.  How they came up with a safari is beyond me?  As it turns out, the “safari” was so humongous, it will take two postings to cover it all.]


1-6-14-2 - Copy

[The San Diego Zoo Safari Park in Escondido.  Don’t ask me why?  Anyway, Escondido is contiguous to San Marcos, directly east.  I may have mentioned before (this is taking so long, who remembers?) that Escondido has a population of 139,000, one of hundreds such sized cities between San Diego and L.A.]

1-6-14-3 - Copy

[Lots of hiking again – we’re heading out onto the Serengeti!]

1-6-14-4 - Copy

[The entrée fee was beyond our, as part of the 47-per centers, abilities to pay, but fortunately “deniece and denephew” had member discount passes.  🙂  The place is huge – 1,800 acres – and the parking lot is bigger than North Dakota.  They obviously run shuttles in the busy season.  We got there early on a January weekday and were able to park almost directly across for the entry gate.]

1-6-14-5 - Copy

[I dunno, but it looked neat.]

1-6-14-6 - Copy

[The Biddies are psyched for adventure!]

1-6-14-7 - Copy

[But which way to go?]

1-6-14-8 - Copy

[Coordinating park maps with assorted GPS devices, we determined we “weren’t in Kansas anymore.”]

1-6-14-9 - Copy

[Rita and I pose with a sculpture of the rare horned pig.]

1-6-14-9-1 - Copy

[One shot is never enough!  ;-)]

1-6-14-13-1 - Copy

[Obviously a bird, with a yellow beak, no less.]

1-6-14-14 - Copy

[Our base camp – I can almost hear Henry’s Mancini’s theme from Hatari.]

1-6-14-15 - Copy

[Whom amongst us doesn’t like photos of hot air balloons?]

1-6-14-17 - Copy

[The King of Beasts . . .]

1-6-14-17-1 - Copy

[His name is Izu.]

1-6-14-18 - Copy

[The supervisor, who speaks fluent feline, has a chat with him.]

1-6-14-19 - Copy

[Can you find the critters?]

1-6-14-20 - Copy

[Ahhh, our first task was to find the tram, a/k/a, light rail transit, for a tour.  You have to walk all the way across the park to get there, but it’s best to do it as early as possible to avoid tourist rush hour.]

1-6-14-21 - Copy

[Didn’t we see these plants at Montage Laguna Beach?]

1-6-14-22 - Copy

[Da plains, da plains!]

1-6-14-23 - Copy

[Ungulates abound.]

1-6-14-25 - Copy

[Cheetah, a sub-dialect version of “cheater,” likely because they razzle-dazzle with speed.  They run them along a race way in the late afternoon, but we couldn’t stay that long because it conflicted with nap time.]

1-6-14-26 - Copy

[Lawn ornaments.]

1-6-14-27 - Copy

[Reetz enjoys the scenery from our first class seats.  Another mimosa, please.]

1-6-14-28 - Copy

[Trees doing an impersonation of a fireworks display.]

1-6-14-29-1 - Copy

[With my extensive knowledge of wildlife beyond city centers, I’m going to guess storks.]

1-6-14-30 - Copy

[Asses (well, they are!)]

1-6-14-31 - Copy

[Antelopes, genus and species unavailable at this time due to my dysfunctional brain.]

1-6-14-32 - Copy

[So, an okapi walks into a bar . . .]

1-6-14-32-1 - Copy

[Dumb joke, but how are the wife and kids?]

1-6-14-33 - Copy

[A bambino.]

1-6-14-34 - Copy

[Dead sticks for breakfast, dead sticks for lunch . . .]

1-6-14-35 - Copy

[It’s movie time!  Available from the supervisor at little or no cost.]

1-6-14-36 - Copy

[Hot, sunny day and they stick me in this concrete bunker.  Hey, I’m almost extinct, y’know?]

1-6-14-37 - Copy

[On second thought, maybe these are the asses?]

1-6-14-38 - Copy

[Who you calling an ass?]

1-6-14-39 - Copy

[Pelicans . . .]

1-6-14-39-1 - Copy

[Escapees from the lake behind Knute Nelson Stadium?]

1-6-14-40 - Copy

[No man, is an island.]

1-6-14-41 - Copy

[First, we have to swim the moat, then climb the mountains . . .]

1-6-14-42 - Copy

[I believe this is the northern white rhino . . .]

1-6-14-42-1 - Copy

[In any event, we were told this is the last guy of his species, on the planet!  Poor guy!  I would bet they have DNA samples for future cloning?]

1-6-14-43 - Copy

[Antelope of indeterminate lineage.]

1-6-14-44 - Copy

[Appears to be scimitar oryx.  Good names for crossword puzzles or Scrabble!]

1-6-14-45 - Copy

[I believe the Rothchild’s giraffe.]

1-6-14-46 - Copy

[Rothchilds gather for tea and crumpets.]

1-6-14-46-1 - Copy

[So, an okapi walks into a bar . . . have you heard this one before?]

1-6-14-47 - Copy

[Where’d everybody go?]

1-6-14-48 - Copy

[The joke wasn’t that bad!]

1-6-14-49 - Copy

[Tram ride done, anybody hungry?]

1-6-14-50 - Copy

[Flora not generally seen around beautiful Lake Darling.]

1-6-14-51 - Copy

[Leaving the depot after an entertaining field trip.]

1-6-14-52-1 - Copy

[Izu has been joined by lady friends, Mina and Oshana.]

1-6-14-53 - Copy

[A sign.]

1-6-14-54 - Copy


1-6-14-55 - Copy

[An overhead sign, as The Biddies go in search of the rare and endangered “overlook.”]

1-6-14-56 - Copy

[Yeah, I liked taking photos of this.]

1-6-14-57 - Copy

[Can you spot the “overlook”?]

1-6-14-58 - Copy

[I wanna take you higher . . .]

1-6-14-59 - Copy

[Can you spot the real elephant?]

1-6-14-59-1 - Copy

1-6-14-60 - Copy

[There they are.]

1-6-14-60-1 - Copy

1-6-14-61 - Copy

[A new tiger area under construction.]

1-6-14-62 - Copy

[I included this shot because I have no idea why I took it.]

1-6-14-63 - Copy

[I’ve been trying for years to find wings that fit!]

1-6-14-64-1 - Copy

[Hey, don’t laugh.  There were probably 50-below wind chills in Minnesota on this day.]

1-6-14-64-2 - Copy

[Sometimes you just gotta go bats!]

1-6-14-65 - Copy

[The Biddies go batty!]

1-6-14-66 - Copy

[Bats impersonating humans wearing bat suits.]

1-6-14-67 - Copy

[The Biddies proudly display their lemur tails.  😉 ]

1-6-14-68 - Copy

[The supervisor practices her bird calls . . .]

1-6-14-69 - Copy

[Oh, there’s one!]

1-6-14-70 - Copy

[A lemur sign.]

1-6-14-71 - Copy

[A reminder that it was nap time.]

1-6-14-72 - Copy

[Asleep without the aid of golf on TV?]

1-6-14-73 - Copy

[A slow attacking root.]

1-6-14-74 - Copy

[A pig, profile.]

1-6-14-75 - Copy

[A pig, frontal.]

1-6-14-76-1 - Copy

[It was time for the bird show – and sitting in the stands, a condor.]

1-6-14-77 - Copy

1-6-14-78 - Copy

1-6-14-79 - Copy

[The launch pole.]

1-6-14-80 - Copy

[Same shot without telephoto.]

1-6-14-81 - Copy

[We have activity . . .]

1-6-14-81-1 - Copy

[We have lift-off!]

1-6-14-82 - Copy

[All alone and blue . . .]

1-6-14-83 - Copy

[Not a condor, different flight pattern.]

1-6-14-84 - Copy

[But you only get frequent flyer miles on alternate Tuesdays and all days of the week between Thursday and Friday.]

1-6-14-85 - Copy

[An East African crowned crane, which may occasionally be sighted in rural Villard.]

1-6-14-86 - Copy

[This gal, or guy, was apparently camera shy.]

1-6-14-87 - Copy

[Dived bombed by another monster avian!]

1-6-14-88 - Copy

[Have been know to capture Volkswagens.]

1-6-14-88-1 - Copy

[A white-winged black bird?]

1-6-14-89 - Copy

[Oh, it’s just the crane!  😉 ]

1-6-14-90 - Copy

[Hello?  Villard?]

1-6-14-91 - Copy

[Trick or treat?]

1-6-14-92 - Copy


1-6-14-93 - Copy

[There’s something flying here?]

1-6-14-94 - Copy

[This, of course, is an owl.]

1-6-14-94-1 - Copy

[Brand name, I don’t recall?]

1-6-14-95 - Copy

[The quiet flyer.]

1-6-14-97 - Copy

[Come to Momma.]

1-6-14-98 - Copy

[Oh, oh, a raptor!]

1-6-14-99 - Copy

[Flying in under the radar . . .]

1-6-14-100 - Copy

[And we have touch down!  This is the 100th photo taken on the day, so a good time to cut off Part I.]

It’s somehow appropriate, that at this time as we are transitioning between months, we can note that March is going out like a lion and April is coming in like a . . . lion!  We just had a prelude, on the evening of the 31st, with a thunderstorm that included lightening, a down pour,  a hint of hail, and areas of tornado warnings, that will overnight transition to a blizzard.  We will, no doubt, awaken in the morning with a new fresh coat of white, of a depth yet to be determined.  Yup, also on the night when network news began their shows with new, more dire, warnings about climate change.

About tomobert63

The Journey Begins Thanks for joining me! This is the follow-up to the original, “,” which overwhelmed the system’s ability to handle it any more. Thus, this is “Part 2.” As the original was initially described: 10-26-07-4 “It all began in a 5,000 watt radio station in Fresno, California” . . . wait a minute, that was Ted Baxter on the Mary Tyler Moore Show! Let’s see . . . oh yeah, it all began in 2003 when retirees, i.e., old people, in Alexandria, Minnesota, who had no desire to become snow birds, went looking for mid-winter entertainment here in the frozen tundra of West Central Minnesota. We discovered girls’ high school hockey, fell in love immediately, and it remains our favorite spectator sport to this day. Initially, and for several years, reports on these games were e-mailed to those who were actually snowbirds but wanted to keep abreast of things “back home.” It was ultimately decided a blog would be more efficient, and it evolved into a personal diary of many things that attracts tens of readers on occasion. It remains a source of personal mental therapy and has yet to elicit any lawsuits. ~ The Editor, May 9, 2014 p.s. The photo border around the blog is the Cardinal girls’ hockey team after just beating Breck for the state championship in 2008. It’s of the all-tournament team. The visible Breck player on the left is Milica McMillen, then an 8th-grader – she is now an All-American for the Gophers. The Roseau player in the stocking cap I believe is Mary Loken, who went on to play for UND; and the Cardinal player on the right, No. 3, is Abby Williams, the player we blame most for making us girls’ hockey fans who went on to play for Bemidji State. *********************************************************************************** Photos contained herein are available for personal use. All you have to do is double click on any of the photos and they will become full screen size. You can then save them into your personal “My Pictures” file. They make lovely parting or hostess gifts, or holiday gifts for such as Uncle Ernie who wants to see how his grand niece is doing on the hockey team. If any are sold for personal profit, however, to, for example, the Audubon Society, National Geographic, Sven’s Home Workshop Monthly, Curling By The Numbers, or the World Wrestling Federation, I only request that you make a donation to the charitable organization of your choice. You have two hours and fifteen minutes. Pencils ready? Begin! **********************************************************************************
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s