In past writings I’ve talked about my grandmother who took me on 3 week vacations every year. From age 7 until 16 I traveled all over the country with good old grandma. Motels were a brand new thing in the ‘50s, and didn’t spread across the country until the ‘60s. However we stayed in motor inns, motor courts, motor lodges, tourist lodges, cottage courts, auto camps, tourist homes, tourist cabins, auto cabins, cabin camps, cabin courts, auto courts and an occasional motel. Many of these places had swimming pools and I floated the evenings away dreaming I lived in these communities. Those times must have created a life-long habit because I still do that “pretend” thing to this day. I was fortunate to have a traveling career that covered most states on the west coast and every city big and small. Every city I stayed in, I would check out the music scene, theatre, arts, and neighborhoods. I read the local fish wraps including the real estate ads. Most importantly I studied the climate of each community. It was like picking a mate. She might have all the great attributes (no cold, no humidity, good music scene, sports teams) BUT she was too high maintenance…couldn’t afford her. I’ve lived in the perfect climate of Newport Beach for 17 years. I’ve lived in the cool foggy summers of Half Moon Bay for four years. I would have never believed I’d spend the happiest years of my life in a community with the dirtiest air in the USA, and temperatures in the summer that don’t like to go below triple digits. Love does crazy things to a wandering man.
But I still pretend I’m living in the places we visit (as we escape the heat). Last week I had to pull myself away from Arcata and Humboldt County. Tomorrow, Saturday will be even tougher. We love Napa Valley and our beautiful retreat at Vino Bella. The temps have stayed in the ‘70s with low ‘50s giving us incredible nights. Our musical concerts have wowed us. The fermented grape juice is better than ever. And since we can’t stay another day, we’re bringing lots of those bottled grapes home with us.