Sunday, April 10, 2011

4/10/11 Hi from sunny Park Sierra, although it still isn't really very warm here yet. In fact, 2 days ago we woke up to about 2-3 inches of snow all over everything, with more big, wet flakes falling! Here is a picture of our rig and car on our lot:

From our living room slide we could see all the trees in the greenbelt next to us covered with snow.

Here is a picture of Elaine on our snowy patio:

But by mid afternoon, the sun was out and most of the snow had melted:

Two days before all this snow and cold, we had a Happy Hour gathering at our lot in honor of Gary & Cecile Thompson, who were giving up their lot at the park. It was so nice that people were sitting outside in their shirtsleeves! Here is a picture of June and Stan Dean, with our next-door neighbor Alan Rodely, and our friend Carolyn Kimpton:

And here is Elaine with Gary Thompson, and his neighbors Gloria and Marvin Taylor:

Our Boomer friends Bill and Gisela Pollock had arrived on Tuesday, and we advised them to go to Yosemite National Park on Wednesday because we had heard there was going to be a big change in the weather. Also, if there was a government shut down, the park would be closed. So they went on Wednesday and had a beautiful day there. We have been having fun social times with them ever since they arrived. Here is a picture of the 4 of us together at the Park Sierra social gathering on Friday:

Other good friends, Judy Farrow & Lou Stoetzer, and Mary & Dave Fountain shared our table with us:

Yesterday we went to two of the wineries on the Madera Wine Trail with Bill and Gisela. Our favorite is Birdstone, which has wonderful wines and a charming tasting room:

Additionally, the owners and winemakers, Kim and Tony Kirk, are warm and welcoming. We met them last year and shared a few glasses of wine at the Isle Hour winery event in Oakhurst last summer. It was great to see Kim again when we were at their winery yesterday. Here is a picture of the 4 of us with Kim at the tasting room:

Our second stop was at Chateau Lasgoity, where the wines were also good and we enjoyed chatting with the owner, John Lasgoity. He told us that he has established a connection with Chinese wine merchants and had an interesting visit to China last year where he observed a lot of their growing and wine making techniques. The Chinese now buy all his wine which is left over at the end of the season.
Bill and Gisela are having us over for dinner tomorrow and then leaving on Tuesday. Too bad they can't stay because the biggest event of the year at Park Sierra starts Wednesday. It is Stagecoach Daze, and it will be 4 days of meals, auctions, craft shows, craft classes, games, raffles, a casino night, a melodrama, and stagecoach rides. We will be helping with some of these events, and enjoying all of them, I'm sure.
In any spare time we have, we are still working on slimming down before our May cruises, and also getting our paperwork in order for future travels. I also managed to get our taxes done, and we got our shed cleaned up a bit. By the time we leave Park Sierra on May 4, it will be our longest stay here (5 weeks) since we became lot holders in 2002!!!

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