|<< Grand Canyon '06|
We left the Grand Canyon as three Families and basically straight shotted to Mt Shasta. We spent a cozy week in Mt Shasta as three Families (15 ppl), five dogs, and Salem's brother (pix in Oct '06). The Lehr Family then headed to Santa Rosa, CA for wedding / extended Family stuff before heading back to Austin.
The other two Families, Unplugged and barenaked, headed to Palm Springs in the Unplugged RV to a killer vacation property. Our backpacking thing was getting luxuriously comfortable ~ just when we thought we'd be tent camping and eating beans for some down time, we're living it up through some down time. Life's strange like that.
Here in Palm Springs, life is surreal. Our safe haven backpacking break becomes a private tiki bar with some fruity drinks upon arrival.
The kids dove into the pool immediately when we arrived and we rarely saw them out of the water during our stay. We enjoyed some quiet times with awesome views... of a golf course?!? ...and a few good Cabo Wabo tequila shots. Thus begins our good tequila snob days (has anyone else heard that cheap tequila is primarily rum? Ya gotta get the 100% Agave stuff).
From the back porch of our vacation house, we ha a great view of the mountains... over the golf course.
Did we mention we're so NOT golfers. Greg sipping some yummy drinks that Brye made us. It was easy getting in the groove of relaxation and happy hours! ...on the golf course.
One of the best dinners we've had in a long time at a local restaurant in Palm Springs. Good times, good food, and good company... this Palm Springs thing is wonderfully sterile.
After dinner we decided to head over to the amphitheater where Tom Petty was playing a concert that night. Since tickets were like $100 each we chose to use our Pro-Fan skills to get us in. After stalking around the perimeter of the place we found a place that we thought we could get in.
So we sacrificed the youngest one to go first. Sorry, but that's the price of Pro - Fanity.
Not all young ones made it back. As you can tell, it was hell. But she did earn her Pro - Fan wings this night. Do you learn that in public school? Don't think so.
Even though we never got into the concert, we did score some pictures with the official road gear of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers tour! This stuff was just laying around the trucks with no one watching them. We may give it back for some backstage passes.
We hung around the tunnel area that the trucks and cars go in and out of for the concert. There were a few opportunities to haul butt into the arena before people noticed, but we never did. Instead we just stood outside and looked like weird people who didn't know what they were doing. Faith was worried about being spotted so she used some disguise when the police walked by us. We didn't ever get into the concert, but did get to meet David Spade... again (Rainbow Room in '02?). He was at the ticket window and walked right by us. Jenn looked over at him and said 'hey, we sat next to you at the Rainbow Room!' He just smiled and took off into the concert. He had tickets and would not be crawling under fences tonight.
The next day we did get to meet and hangout with Clark Griswold.
We went to some little place on the main street of Palm Springs and had some drinks and appetizers as we were doing the touristy thing. We started ordering a few appetizers but then everything started sounding good so we ended up with about eight different plates. Greg and Jenn had planned on picking up the bill, but ended up doing the old 'I forgot my wallet thing!' Not on purpose, honestly. They were in our other pockets back at the house. Thanks Brye and Salem!
Faith loves onion rings...only on certain days though... it's weird.
Think we were the youngest ones with young ones in Palm Springs.
After eating four hundred pounds of appetizers, we decided to walk some of it off and act like old movie stars.
Sunny Bnf and Sonny ef'n Bono.
This sums up our relationship.
Yes, we are rock stars. Faith took about fifty pictures to get this one right. She now has arthritis.
The guys all sporting their sarongs around the pool. They didn't stay on long, later in the night Greg had an important announcement to make... and it was one hell of a cannonball... with a little flair.
Babes and Kailua. Did we mention Brye and Salem have horses that travel with us?
After partying for a few days in Palm Springs, we got busy moving the rest of Unpluggeds stuff out of their house in Fallbrook to Shasta.
The kids had more fun walking up and down the ramp than being productive.
Austin took breaks to entertain us as we were busting ass.
Nice ghetto front yard shot.
As we were moving we noticed that the sky started filling with smoke and becoming darker. Gotta love that southern California weather. Soon ash started falling from the sky so we went in to try and find out where the fire was.
The fire was HUGE and not that far away (in CA wildfire speak). We arranged getaway cars and routes and picked up the moving pace. Because of high winds we got to breathe the smoke for hours. It sucked and by the end of the day, we felt like total crap because of it.
We filled up a semi trailer and crammed a few leftovers into the already packed RV. Made for a fun ride home. But we were done and Brye and Salem were happy. It was an intense, emotional time for them having to let go of their past and move into their future. But they did it with grace and a few curse words. We were grateful to sit silently by their side in profound understanding.
We were so wiped out from two days of moving that we could hardly see straight.
As you can see there was no room to walk or sit in the RV as we rode back to our Palm Springs vacation house with two Families (9 people), four dogs, a dining room table with chairs, lamps, and a crapload of nick nacks.
When we got back to Palm Springs there was a cute baby on our doorstep waiting for us. No really, the neighbors next to Brye and Salem recently had a baby and they let us have her for a few hours while they went out on a date!
We all took turns holding her, burping her, and changing diapers. It was funny to see the kids so excited about all that maintenance! Chloe was awesome and such a perfect little baby!
Elijah finally wore a sarong after we had been trying to get him in one for days. Sarongs are the new thing for us and he was the last to buy into it. Once he put it on, he was chomping at the bit to get one of his own and didn't let us forget about it the whole time we were in Palm Springs.
We had a great time there and were grateful to be there with Brye and Salem watching the golf course grass go from brown and dead to green and alive in a week. It was relaxing, peaceful, and so much fun to be green and alive. Thanks to the UnpluggedFamily for sharing this slice of heaven with us! Say, why don't we go to San Diego for (roadschool.com) Ed Nodland's 50th since we're so close and the wildfire missed us?!?
San Diego '06 >>