In the city where it doesn’t feel like it..

Coming back to San Diego left us in a bit of a quandary, we needed to pick some things up for the trip North, solar panel and extra battery for off grid but there were no weekend availabilities in any RV Parks closer to the beach, and cooler temperatures. We headed back across the border to a fairly short wait and our 2nd really pleasant border agent..yes it can happen;) and then back to the surreal landscape of strip malls and super-highways as we headed back out towards Lakeside and Lake Jennings County Park for two nights.

8-11-15-AWe took the opportunity to take it easy for a few days, no visiting, no rushing around and explored taking a drive up to El Capitan Reservoir which holds the majority of San Diego’s water I read..it looked very depleted and sad to see hundreds of beautiful old eucalyptus dying on the roadsides. Not sure if their roots just couldn’t reach the water or if maybe they had stopped being watered. Quite the wake-up call to see the reservoir so very low.

After the weekend our spot in Santee Lakes Recreation Area opened up and we moved out of the heat, 92° at Lake Jennings was fairly warm (OK..hot) and the mid 80’s here seem cool. The Lakes are beautiful and filled with birds, yes I am in heaven. We checked out our site before we reserved it last month and it is tucked into a quiet corner with shade and trees. Our kind of place. So here we are organizing for the trip North and out of the heat and into altitude and darker skies. First we will have to run the gauntlet that is the Anza Borrego Desert and Joshua Tree National Park where we plan to broil for several days;) We plan on driving no more than 3 hours a day and staying several days at least in each place, unless they are a disaster and then we will move on;) The joys of being mobile:)

The wildlife here at Santee Lakes has been beautiful. The Lakes are stocked for fishing and the bird life is abundant. The shore and reeds are pulsing with the flight of dozens of dragonflies. From blue to red and even gold it has been beautiful to walk and watch them…camera in hand:) The variety of life that water sustains never ceases to amaze me. The sound of coyotes howling has startled the cats a few times..just hope it wasn’t that little poodle that just walked by..0_0…

Dragonfly

Dragonfly

8-10-15-A

Red dragonfly

With pathways and jogging trails you can explore the perimeters of all the lakes as well as meet up with a variety of other walkers and pooches as well. It is more park like than I am used to as far as exploring goes but it has provided me the opportunity to get out and photograph the things I love to look at. The birds here have been delightful. I’ve been able to quietly get fairly close to the wood ducks that fascinate me but the herons, egrets and cormorants are my first choice to watch and study.

8-10-Great EgretAsign

Great Egret

8-10-Cormorant head sign

Cormorant-those eyes!

As we plan our way North it has been fascinating to read other blogs and search the maps for campgrounds and lakes as well as boondocking sites away from the hustle and bustle of humanity. Something we are not used to;) We have discovered just how much we cherish our quiet time. The city offers so very much..all that ice cream..oh dear!..hahaha..when did salted caramel come into being(?!!!!) it has been a delight in many ways as we have explored the food stores we now know we like, smaller, ethnic mostly, as we re-delight our palates with tastes we missed in Baja and often took for granted in Canada. Pitas and shawarma, gyros and tzatziki, hummous and baba ganoush…little delicasies we have discovered again..oh my, must go out and walk some off;)

Every new spot gives us a new vista into a country we hardly know and are so looking forward to exploring. Last night Mike set up the 18″ Dobsonian telescope beside the trailer before sunset and we smiled at the comments of “is that a camera?” to “what the heck?”….All were invited to come back at dark and most did..always delightful to hear the expressions of folks seeing Saturn for the first time…even in these light polluted skies in can be an astonishing sight. A dear friend brought her nephew and a friend down and they were fascinated…”the best night of his life” she texted me this morning is what he said..oh to be 11 again:) This is why we are doing this:) Besides…A gentleman said we were the smartest folks he’d met in months..;)..there’s a compliment I don’t often get:)

So, I leave you with what we were looking at last night and stay tuned for the next episode:) Saludos

Saturn

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