San Juan Capistrano is a good half-way point to meet up with friends who now live in San Diego. On a Sunday in good traffic, it takes about an hour to drive there from Claremont. The train from San Diego takes about 90 minutes.
Without much of an agenda except to catch up, we wandered the Mission, cameras in hand and enjoyed the photogenic gardens, ruins, and reconstructed buildings.
March 19 is the traditional day that the swallows return, so all we saw in the skies were clouds.
We’re still waiting for fall weather, after what seems like an unseasonably warm October. That didn’t stop traditional autumnal activities.
There was homecoming at CHS.
A morning at Cal State Northridge with clear blue skies showed off the matador mascot. The car got a washing which offered an artistic moment through the windshield, and fall break at the colleges had lights on in the library for two students catching up.
There was the usual decorating of homes for Halloween.
And, a very warm Village Venture.
During our weekend getaway we visited two bookstores, because, well, that’s how we do vacation. In Ventura we spent some time in The Calico Cat Bookshop and ended up buying a book of Gustav Klimt’s artwork.
Even though we didn’t buy any books at Bart’s Books in Ojai, we loved the ambiance. It’s an outdoor bookstore, like an open air market.
I’m sure there’s a plan about how to protect the books from rain, but it wasn’t obvious to the casual book browser.
Maybe I should have bought this book….
This is fall break at the Claremont Colleges, the weekend chosen to inaugurate Pomona College’s 10th president, Gabrielle Starr. I don’t have a post about the event, as we choose the weekend to get away. I’m sure it was one for the books.
You can read about it at my friend’s blog here.
Instead, we spent the day in and near Ojai, with a short hike (a stroll, really) in the Los Padres National Forest. Perusing a number of choices for hiking, we chose the one with the most shade as California weather has been hot and dry with the Santa Ana winds blowing.
Driving past Ojai, the coastal mountains were clear.
Around a bend we saw the smallest post office in the US. Aside from the closed antiques store next door, I didn’t see anything that might be called Wheeler Springs. We didn’t investigate, but I’m sure there’s civilization somewhere nearby.
The Rose Valley Falls Trailhead starts in a campground and traverses over a few small streams and through some shaded areas, enjoying what passes for fall colors in Southern California.
The falls were not large, but offered a cool spot on a hot day. I would certainly recommend it for families.
Last week was the hottest week I can ever remember since living in Claremont. And that is 31 years. It’s one thing when the dry heat gets up to 105-110 degrees during the day, but when it only gets down to 80 at night, well, that’s really awful. To make matters worse for us, our air conditioner was broken for the entire week. So we had to find ways to beat the heat.
Ride Bikes at the Beach
In 2012 we had a great day riding at the beach, so we thought we’d finally try it again. The winds were very strong, so we didn’t make it all the way to Bolsa Chica, but we did enjoy the landscape of Huntington Beach.
Go to the Mall
I usually go to the mall once every few years, but I found it a great place to get in a few thousand steps and look at the art that has been going up in the past year.
Go to the Library
This time I spent a few quality afternoon hours in the Honnold Library Cafe at the colleges. It’s a popular place, but I still managed to find a place to plug in my laptop and get some work done.
If antiquing is your thing, then you will find plenty to enjoy in the Antique District in downtown Pomona. Each store is really a collection of many small stores on various floors with a wide variety of wares.
And if all that shopping works up a thirst, you can wander over to Mi Cafecito for something delicious.
For some reason, I don’t feel as though summer is really here until July. June must fill itself up with things I put off from the school year. Then there are June events to fill up the calendar.
Some of the events included the Annual Vista Track Meet, a talk by Luis Fuerte (the cameraman of the PBS show California’s Gold), a Levitt on the Lawn concert at Scripps College (the Dustbowl Revival), and my sister’s graduation from Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena.
A volunteer squash plant sprouted in my yard, and we had a bumper year for apricots which we had to rescue from the squirrels. Plums were good this year, too. A dead city tree was removed, and early June was a great time to hike the Wilderness Park Trail before it got too hot.
The wading pool at Memorial Park was open once again after years of drought. The bottom of the pool has new sea creatures painted on it.
A day trip to Pasadena led to the discovery of a few Little Free Libraries.
The Vintage Flip people are working on two buildings along 4th St. between Harvard and Yale.
Pomona College was busy with weddings and National Cello Institute.