We stayed at the San Clemente State Beach campground. It was a great location, on the bluffs overlooking the Pacific Ocean, views of San Clemente pier and Amtrak railroad line. We walked from the State Park to San Clemente Pier and up the hill into town. Many shopping excursions and lunch dates on Avenida Del Mar.PSA flight attendant Gwen Lindell and Patty walked the beach boardwalk and path in early mornings. Patty misses those morning walks and Gwen’s informative history of San Clemente talks!
CAROL AND BRIAN BENSON EXCURSIONS: CRYSTAL COVE ON THE BEACH, ORANGE HILL RESTAURANT AT SUNSET, AND WHALE WATCHING FROM DANA POINT:
Patty’s sister Carol and her husband Brian were excellent tour guides during our time spent in Orange County. One day we lunched at the Beachcomber Restaurant, which was right on Crystal Cove Beach next to rental cottages. It was great to see these cottages still in existence. Patty’s family has lived in Orange County for 40 years and so much has been torn down and replaced. So many orange groves and strawberry fields were replaced with warehouses and office buildings.
We caught an orange sun setting over the Pacific Ocean on the outside patio of Orange Hill Restaurant, located in the city of Orange in Orange County. Adeptly named!
One day we went whale watching out of Dana Point Marina. We saw numerous dolphins and small size whales. The underwater viewing pod in the boat’s pontoon was an interesting way to view the dolphins swimming next to the boat. It was a sunny blue-sky day, perfect to be out on the ocean.
TRABUCO CANYON AT O’NEILL REGIONAL PARK AND SUPER BOWL PARTY AT CHUCK SWISSHELM’S HOUSE:
We moved from San Clemente to O’Neill Regional Park to be closer to Chuck Swisshelm’s house in Irvine. Many times Patty and her Mom would take a drive to Saddleback Mountain from her home in Laguna Hills. It was nice to camp in Trabuco Canyon, and relive memories of Virginia Swisshelm.
We were excited to attend Chuck’s annual Super Bowl party this year. All four Swisshelm children were present; Ginny, Carol, Patty and Chuck. Steve won $40 in the football pool and treated Patty to a fine breakfast at Mimi’s Café (one of Mom’s favorite places to eat).
CAITLIN CLIFFORD’S VISIT, LA COUNTY MUSEUM OF ART, SAN DIEGO:
Patty’s daughter Caitlin flew into Orange County for a visit. We were fortunate enough to use Caitlin’s Christmas present to us, a tour of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and the special exhibit called ‘The Rain Room”. The Rain Room had sensors on the floor so when you stepped into the rain showers, the raindrops would stop. Rain would fall all around you without getting wet.
We stayed at Mission Bay RV Resort in San Diego. The Pacific Beach location was perfect for everyone to enjoy his or her various activities. One night Caitlin, Patty and Patty’s BFF Susan Sparks went out to Happy Hour that continued until 2 AM. Caitlin heard many stories of Patty and Susan’s days of being PSA flight attendants, living on Ocean Front Walk in South Mission Beach, traveling around the world together and flying together. Some of the best 8 years of my life were spent drumming up shenanigans in San Diego and La Jolla.
Steve’s daughter Taryn flew into San Diego from Chicago for a visit. It was great to have our two youngest daughters with us. Taryn enjoyed seeing her San Diego State friends and girlfriends that moved to San Diego from Redding, California.
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