The last several months have been a whirlwind — Germany, Sicily, Malta, Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Japan. We love the adventure but after a while we miss our “people.” It’s time for some familiar faces and places before we head out once again.
My home is not a place, it is people.
— Lois McMaster Bujold
First order of business was a stop in San Francisco to see Nick and Maddie (and Henry!).
It was funny because the first thing we see after the long flight from Japan is a display at the San Francisco airport was this exhibit on ancient Japanese cats!
Cats are fine and all but we were more excited to see this little dog!
One highlight of the short stay was a visit to AT&T Park to see the Giants.
The best thing, however, was hanging with these two!
We headed to Venice Beach, where Frank and I discovered “Birds.” The electric scooters are everywhere and easily unlocked with the click of an Iphone app. Frank’s knee was bothering him but you’d never know it. Every day, you’d see us buzzing along the boardwalk back and forth to Santa Monica and zig-zagging through the streets of Venice! We may have been a few decades older than the average rider, but no one had more fun than we did!
If I could live anywhere in the US, it would probably be Venice Beach, California. It’s creative and colorful, the weather is perfect and the people watching is beyond compare. I love the whole “be whoever you want to be” vibe.
I also love that Venice Beach is a short Metro ride to downtown LA, where Nick and Maddie live. Their apartment has incredible views of the city’s dynamic skyline. Although LA as a whole is sprawling, the downtown area is fairly compact and easily navigable. It’s fun to wander the streets in search of new restaurants, galleries and colorful street art.
So, back to “Beach and the Broad.” The beach is obviously Venice, where we spent five days before our week in DTLA. The “broad” does not refer to Maddie or I(!), but is pronounced “brode” and refers to LA’s relative new contemporary art museum. The museum opened in 2015 and I never seem organized enough to secure advance tickets, which are free and quickly grabbed up.
On this trip though, I took advantage of a newly discovered (for me) ticket “loophole” — the stand-by line. I got to the museum around 10:30 and was 40th in line. The museum opened at 11 and I was inside by 11:15! I wish I had discovered this plan sooner!
And “How was it?” you ask. Well, let’s just say this broad loved The Broad!
The view from Nick and Maddie’s
Frank was so excited to be able to swim again . . .
. . . and to cook!
We loved seeing this little guy again!
I forgot what we were talking about.
The Broad. Yayoi Kusama’s “Longing for Eternity”
Yayoi Kusama’s Infinity Mirrored Room, “The Souls of Millions of Light Years Away.” Each person was allowed inside for 45 seconds.
Honey, I shrunk the kids.
The Walt Disney Concert Hall and sidewalk art installation across from the Broad.
colorful downtown LA
Next time we come, the MOCA.
Need more LA?
With Nick going to school in LA, we have visited several times. I wrote about LA back in 2014 as we headed out at the beginning of our adventure.
. . . in Sedona I always feel a sense of safety and peace, as if I’ve returned to the home of my soul, into the arms of Mother Earth, the red land that always welcomes me with open arms.”
– Ilchi Lee, The Call of Sedona: Journey of the Heart
“Sedona,” she said, when Jenny and I asked Mom where she would like to celebrate her 80th birthday. It was a place she’d never been and it couldn’t have been a nicer trip. The weather was sunny, not too hot. We drank piña coladas around the pool, took a couple small hikes and shopped (we were with mom, after all!); but mostly we just enjoyed each others’ company. It was the ideal place to celebrate a special lady.
We were surprised and very pleased to discover that the condo we booked was on the grounds of the Tlaquepaque Arts and Crafts Village.
Unique shops and some really good restaurants were only steps away!
Chapel of the Holy Cross
Chapel of the Holy Cross
Jerome on her mind hahaha
Frank and I have come to see Bozeman as a second home. It’s relaxing. We have family here. We arrive and easily get into our routines. Frank has his pool. I have my hikes. We have our favorite bakeries, restaurants and grocery stores. It’s easy.
That said, every time we come we discover something new and fun in this beautiful area of the country. And sometimes we have visitors : )
It’s been a rainy June in Bozeman.
Rainy weather, however, makes it beautifully green!
I have my favorite hikes like Pete’s Hill (above) and Drinking Horse.
Drinking Horse hike
As kids do, Jenny’s are growing up. Sienna and Cee Cee just finished 8th grade.
Tyler turned 18! (that’s his girlfriend Meghan)
We visited Jordan in Missoula. He showed us his kilns where he does all his pottery.
Frank made some great meals, as . . .
did Jenny. She made a plate-licking huckleberry pie.
Our favorite food truck changed to tacos and crepes – no more bbq ribs – but still a good stop.
First trip to the Bozeman “beach”
Jenny and I got very excited when we heard who was visiting . . .
He always makes us laugh!
4th of July in Big Sky – nothing like family!
I’ve previously mentioned how traveling can nudge you out of your comfort zone. When you’re home, it’s easy to become complacent, “Why would I want to do that?” Traveling gives you the opportunity to stretch and say, “Why NOT?!”
Although the things I’ve done in Bozeman don’t quite rise to previous “levels of wild” (i.e. skydiving, diving with sharks, walking with lions), I did push myself a couple times.
Climbing the “M”
The “M” has always intimidated me by its steepness and height.
This year, I decided to try it.
At the top of the “M”!!!
Evidently, bridge jumping is “a thing” in Montana. Why would I want to do that? I hate cold water (yes, I’m one of those who has to walk in an inch at a time before going under). I don’t like heights. And who wants to jump into a dark hole when you don’t even know what’s in it or how deep it really is.
Even the girls debated whether or not to jump . . .
But then they did!
and then Cee Cee
After a while, I went and sat on the bridge. Sienna came up next to me. “What are you afraid of? What’s the worse that could happen?” she asked. “It’s deep enough. It will be cold but I will have a warm towel waiting for you.” Who could argue with that?!!
On our way to California, we spent a very nice evening in Boise, Idaho. Our sister-in-law Helen and nephew Steve showed us around. It’s a beautiful town and we hope to visit again soon.