Our California vacation locale is not Anza Borrego Desert State Park, but further north, in the Bay Area, where we lived for 25 years. I’m again getting a crash course (you should pardon the …
Our California vacation locale is not Anza Borrego Desert State Park, but further north, in the Bay Area, where we lived for 25 years. I’m again getting a crash course (you should pardon the expression) in how much faster the traffic and the pace of life is down here. (We haven’t wintered down here in four years because of the pandemic.)
It’s not unusual, here in Santa Rosa/Sonoma County just north of San Francisco, to drive the speed limit, and in your rearview there’s someone tailgating you.
We’re renting in a well-established seniors community called Oakmont. And even though it’s an older community much like PT, drivers still whizz around well above the speed limit. So many things to do and buy. So many people to see. So many trendy eateries to patronize.
Oakmont, one could say, is PT writ large. Who knew seniors would keep up such a fast pace?
I got pulled over by PT cops when I first moved here from California … for doing what is known as a “California stop.” That is, not coming to a full stop at the octagon. I still had California plates, so the officer was understanding and let me off with a warning.
There are a lot of things to do, places to be within this retirement village of Oakmont — which teenagers jokingly call Croakmont.
Among the activities are recent movies, a pickleball club, a billiards club, and a pétanque club.
But wait, there’s more: There’s also men’s and women’s Bible study clubs and a Jewish interest group. Add to that a garden club, a canine club, a Sunday symposium, an Oakmont Boomers group, a current events discussion group, a Cal Alumni club, and even a domino club.
But wait … there’s more. An investment club; fitness and hiking clubs; a Rotary Club; a singles club; a bocce club, and a Lifelong Learning Program.
And a bunch more. But, I didn’t see a Scrabble club, surprisingly. (I started one in PT.)
So why are all these older drivers in Oakmont in such a hurry when there’s plenty to do near home? It’s not like they have to go far for activities.
After two weeks down here, even in a desirable area, PT is looking better all the time.
Granted, we don’t have the great weather in PT that Sonoma County has. But it could be a lot worse.
To wit: A friend in Nova Scotia sent us an article about how some locals there are adapting to this winter’s record bone-chilling cold in Maritime Canada.
Some goose and chicken owners are now boarding their poultry in their homes! Too cold out there in the coop. Don’t even THINK of saying “your goose is cooked” now.
— Other wine country notes: We’re seeing even fewer people wearing masks down here than in PT … and rain has returned and is treated like a sacrament in this drought-plagued area. Horticultural pioneer Luther Burbank famously lived here, calling Sonoma County “the chosen spot of all this earth.”
In other business:
— Anybody else gotten hooked not only on the better-known Wordle but also on the daily Spelling Bee puzzle in The New York Times? The Bee is truly addictive, and my wife and I manage to reach the tough Genius level most days. But somehow, my son and his wife up in Vancouver somehow manage to collaborate and go further — and find every word most days.
— Doggy Corner: Attention dog people! Have you read the popular and acclaimed Chet and Bernie books about the crime-solving Chet the Dog and his human sidekick? I love some of their titles: “Tail of Vengeance”; “Dog on It”; “To Fetch a Thief”; “Thereby Hangs a Tail”; “Paw and Order”; “The Sound and The Furry”; and “Scents and Sensibility”; “Tender Is The Bite;” and “Heart of Barkness.” I am told the books are as clever as their titles
— Finally, Twitter humorist Middle Age Riot tweets: “Since February is Black History Month, Florida governor Ron DeSantis has declared today to be March 1st.”
(PT humorist Bill Mann is due back here soon. He and his wife are loading up Meyer lemons to give their catsitter Grace and friends and neighbors. Reach him at Newsmann9@ gmail.com.)