First Trip and We’re Trippin”

First Trip and We’re “Trippin” 



With two shots into our arms, we decided to get the wood ceilings in our house painted.  And we lucked out because our painter was available during the time we had booked our first vacation in a slightly safer world.  

Borrego Springs was on the docket and we took advantage of a stay and play plan for a room and two rounds of golf at Ram’s Hill, a fabulous course south of Borrego a few miles.  

But how to get there and back safely.  We decided to cut the trip up into pieces because my derriere doesn’t like to be sedentary for too long.  The Princess set down the law.  Truth be known, Rayman is an A-Z man, and ladies, you know what I mean.  

Our first stop was in Los Alamos for Wellbread.  Arriving at 11ish, there was a line as long as a Disney Matterhorn ride.  When the line didn’t budge, we scadaddled and settled for a plan of cupcakes for lunch from Crush Bakery in Santa Barbara.  A good second choice which took us on a sugar high from the moon and back.  Boy, were they good.  Bought two extras for my cousin, Chris and his wife, Nancy since I had arranged to stop in for a one hour visit in Camarillo…his is my rich cousin on the hill, with his own private tennis court in his backyard and an avocado orchard too.  I kid my cousin.  He blushes when I call him the rich relatives on the hill!!  So I say it as much as possible.  Because I am a brat!!

Nancy is Japanese and we were concerned about anti-Asian sentiment creeping into to their world.  They said all was well because their community was very integrated.  Then Nancy gave me some of her family history.  Her mother and father married in 1942 so they could be “imprisoned” with her grandfather whom was ill.  And so it was that their internment began.  It was very ugly on many levels.  Living in barracks with cracks in the wall, uninsulated from the cold and heat in many different “garden spots” of the state.  Man’s inhumanity toward men.  It was a lovely visit with lots of laughter along with the angst of the aforementioned history.  

Then we went shopping at the “short guy shop” in Sherman Oaks.  Jimmy Au’s has been a mainstay in L.A.  Lots of pictures of jockeys and stars adorn the walls of his big store with small sizes.  Check out the window art.


Rayman came away with pants and shirts that fit and I love what he got.  It was fun kidding around the guy that helped us.  He was a hoot.  60 something with a groovy haircut the sprouted this way and that.  He had more product in his hair than suspenders in his store!!  I urged Rayman to buy suspenders but he refused.  Heck the guy the came by last week to repair our gas fireplace insert was wearing a pair.  No plumber’s crack visible.  


But I digress.

Finally, we drove back the way we came as far as Woodland Hills and stayed the night in a Hilton.  Man, what a situation with covid.  Food could be had by ordering at the bar and retreating to your room or sit in a public space distanced, of course.  The bed was as hard as the floor.  The fan and temp could not be changed…I know, I tried.  You couldn’t open the window.  It reminded me of being on an airplane.  Uncomfortable with the steady noise of the engine (fan).  

The next day, my back was a mess from the hard bed.  Rayman told me to wait with the bags and he would fetch the car.  So, I did.  Where did he go?  I waited and waited and met a couple of long legged, good looking tennis team members from U of Washington…they were very nice but they had lost their match but vowed revenge.  Still, no Rayman.  Then my phone rang.  Rayman was hyperventilating and trying to explain his predicament in which he was presently engaged.  Seems he put the paid ticket for parking into the wrong slot and he couldn’t get out of the gate.  Panic was evident.  So, I ran inside the lobby and asked the guy behind the desk what to do.  He said, “Have him push the HELP button.”  So, I said, “Rayman, just push the HELP button.”   “Where?  Oh, yeah, I see it.”  Then the phone went silent, I went back out to the luggage and he finally arrived with his hair smoldering from the fire that had just been extinguished.  


And off we went.  I drove.


Toilet Trouble

We stopped in Temecula for gas.  It had a restroom so I went to the door but it was locked.  A man came up and knocked on the door.  “Marcy, hurry up in there.”  Then he turned to me and explained that she had issues with water.  UH???  A few minutes passed.  I heard the water running.  Then she came out with the key to the restroom dangling from her month from the end of a wood block to which  the key was attached.  Oh, and her pants were down around her knees.  OMG.  I was afraid to enter.  Of course, she let the door close necessitating me to touch the key and doorknob.  Good grief.  Her husband (?) approached and asked her what the hell she was doing.  I disappeared into the restroom hoping it wasn’t flooded.  It was dry and so I did my business and opened the door.  Rayman was waiting.  I explained not to touch the bottom of the wood block.  I let him in.  He later told me he never touched the key thingee other than handing it to the guy behind him before he entered.

We went across the parking lot and bought a couple of chicken tacos to go…there was a restroom in the place.  Mexican owned, I’m sure it was squeaky clean and the patrons didn’t seem half crazed.  But, there you go.



We spent the evening with our friends that live in Borrego, Al and Charlie, while it rained and stormed.  The next day we played golf.  I Facebooked  about it so I won’t bore you with too much of the story other than to say we got paired up with a couple from San Luis Obispo.  And we found out over lunch with them that they were leaving Friday and we were getting the room they were currently staying in.  Seems the guy that booked our reservations messed up and only booked us at Casa Del Zorro for 4 nights instead of 6 and the hotel was completely sold out for the weekend.  So, he called and offer to move us up to Ram’s Hill for the last two nights.  Up there they have a unit named the Nook.  So, the degree of separation between the four of us was tiny.  

Today, it is very windy.  We drove around the valley looking at monsters and animals and  stopped for an ice cream cone that was absolutely delicious…better than last nights meal at the hotel.  


The other thing about the virus is that breakfast is a brown paper bag that you pick up and take to your room.  It consists of a bagel, cream cheese, honey, peanut butter, one apple, one OJ (no pulp) and a fruited yogurt, complete with plastic utensils.  It is dreadful.  But it is safe.  Coffee is also available.  


Tonight we return to Al and Charlie’s for dinner and we are very much ready for a good meal again!! 


Wild borregos couldn’t keep him away!!

Wild animals in the desert and your author.







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