Happy Easter from California!
Recent Activities, such as they are
I made this yellowing paper Easter bunny when I was very small. Unfortunately, it’s joined the never-ending stream of old artifacts that I give away or throw away every week. However, before it abandoned the scene, it was immortalized, digitized, by my Sony Cyber-Shot DSC-HX80.
I haven’t written an update in quite a while. Some things have gone better lately, but not before I reached rock bottom a couple months ago, as I was wracked with pains. They imprisoned me at home for well over a month. Now it appears that those pains were, at least in part, the accumulated side-effects of a medicine that I had been taking since returning from China.
The good part is that my friends, especially Jim and Karen, came to my rescue and helped take me to doctors, and in general supported me through the dark times. I’m not “out of the woods” yet, and some pains continue despite the withdrawal of the medicine. But at least they’ve receded enough that I could welcome my friend from China, Li Wen, one of three journalist friends who helped me understand China more deeply and accurately way back when. Here she sits with Jim and Karen, as we ate “hot pot” with Tianjin University dinner plates and chopsticks.
It was wonderful to see her again after almost three years. And showing her around took my mind off my otherwise self-centered focus on pain. We visited several Bay Area sights, including the Golden Gate Bridge, Major League Baseball, Point Reyes and Lake Chabot. We even shared a chocolate rabbit together, in honor of Easter.
Another highlight this winter was our fifteenth and final Castro Valley High School band reunion. For one last time, we former students enjoyed playing under the direction of our old band teacher in the very room where we’d performed together so long ago, a room full of memories of high school musicals and pancake breakfasts. Actually, I was pleasantly surprised to find that I could still play my old saxophone after a long hiatus.
In January, our Sunday school class helped out with a free meal for homeless people, an event that takes place at one church or another every day of the month in the Berkeley area. I’m very thankful that I don’t have to live that way, and along with the other class members, was only too glad to help out those who must.
I also finally became an Oakland Zoo supporter. I’ve visited there now three times, including once with my guest Li Wen this week. I can bring in a guest for free with my membership, so if you’re in the area and want to visit a zoo, contact me! Here’s a bonus meerkat!
And finally I took an afternoon last week to visit my pseudo-nephew John up in Davis. On the way back I snapped a picture of Lagoon Valley Park near Peña Adobe Park near Vacaville. It’s the same scene that I’ve featured more than once in my annual calendars. It’s amazing that every year it looks just as gorgeous as every other year.
What’s On My Mind
Since I was stuck at home for so much of the last few months, I don’t have very many events to share. However, I did compose the previous post about the United States and its multiculture nature, so I think when I add this post to the previous one, that’s enough for this season.