Back Home in the USA

Home sweet home

We would have been busy as heck for the two months we spent in the US if we had done nothing more than visit on an individual basis with family and friends, including my sister Sharon; Rick’s sister Linda and her husband Rich; his sister Elena and Neil and their kids; his brother Andrew and his partner and their newborn, Alexa; Rick’s Mom; all of Rick’s local nieces and nephews; our grown children Dan and Drew and their partners by visiting them near Seattle; our neighbors including Bev and our old cat Po; my old friends Chris, Roz and Lynne from San Francisco; and Rick’s buddy John and his family.

My sister Sharon greeted me with a home BBQ’d steak dinner my first night home. I was jonesing for a good steak.

The latest arrival to the Patrinellis family – Andrew and Leah’s baby Alexandra, with Mom Patrinellis, Rick and me

Rick’s sister Linda, her son Scott, her husband Rich, and his son Rich Jr.

Niece Jen and Mike with Linda, Rich and Scott

Our son Dan, MC’ing a benefit in Washington for American Whitewater

Our son Drew at the “hashing” club he founded in Bremerton, Washington. Yes, both Rick and I joined in the fun of this running/ beer drinking club

Playing games with Ericka and Drew

The lovely dinner that Dan’s Sara made for my birthday and Xmas and thanksgiving all in one!

Visiting with Rick’s nieces Cara, Robin, Holly (not pictured), with Matt

Holly’s in this one, and so are Skylar the dancing queen and Harper

My old friends Chris and Roz, with their dog Keplar.

Our dear friend and neighbor, Bev

Visiting our old cat Po. We miss him but he now has a loving home with Bev

Gosh I miss him

Rick’s buddy John and his family prepared a wonderful BBQ for us

But no, that’s not all we did. As I review our calendar, I can’t believe how much we squeezed into just eight weeks. We danced salsa and rueda several times with our old dancing group; we saw Linda’s new puppies and Rich’s new boat;  I experienced the solar eclipse at about 78% blackout, we set up a legal trust for our kids; I completed a whole slew of boat canvas sewing projects while Rick built a wall in our carport in addition to a number of other house maintenance projects; we initiated our long term French Polynesian visas by visiting the French Consulate in San Francisco and turning in a ton of personal documentation; I provisioned for French Polynesia by ordering food stuffs only available on line, like canned meats and bulk freeze dried fruits and vegetables, that I can’t get in Mexico, while Rick bought more than 100 pounds of materials and supplies for other boat projects; we researched and bought a satellite phone; Rick bought a small guitar for Cool Change; we researched for our voyage to French Polynesia including learning a new, complicated weather routing software package; and I spent hours weighing and reweighing our baggage and sending off the excess supplies to everyone I knew who would be coming down to Mexico before we leave so they could bring the stuff to us.

Two of my favorite dance partners, David and Don, who kindly fill in when another woman has invited Rick to dance

Some of Linda’s new, perfectly marked Boston Terrier litter

Rich’s new boat

The first of several boat sewing projects – this is a carpet, custom-sized for the floor (sole) of Cool Change. Yes, this represents our entire square footage of walkable space on our boat!

Another boat project – four new covers for our aging foam cockpit cushions

Our visit to San Francisco included a long walk around downtown, Chinatown and North Beach, including this shot Rick took of the Transamerica Pyramid

In addition, I had a birthday; we went to a friend’s wedding, we witnessed the destruction of the California wine country fires, including friends’ and family’s homes being destroyed; we ordered and later discontinued a bunch of premium TV channels to get our TV fix while in the US; we had our annual medical checkups, ordered our routine prescriptions, and each spent our entire annual dental insurance allotment in those eight short weeks. We went to the Coloma bridge to see the annual pumpkin display on Halloween night. Our visit to the US, as it always has been every time we return from Mexico, was more than a whirlwind: it was a tornado!

My birthday dinner at our favorite local restaurant, Cafe Mahjaic

My friend Betty’s wedding

A visit to the bridge in Coloma on Halloween brought the joy of the annual pumpkin show at night

It is always bittersweet, leaving our home in the USA to return to our floating home in Mexico.  I will miss our big comfy bed, all the people we love, and our sunsets overlooking the river from our deck with a glass of good California wine.  But the slower pace of life and the Mexican margaritas aren’t bad either!  Besides, in a few short months if all goes as planned, we will be crossing an ocean!

Our comfy new bed in our home on the river

At a Mexico City hotel on our way back to Mazatlan. Returning to Mexico means a slower pace of life and a great margarita!


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