Christmas & Birthdays 2008

A visit to Gale & John’s in Gridley

December 25-27, 2008

Day 1, Thursday, Home to Stockton, Ca. via SR 99, I-5: 18 miles.

Carolyn’s beautiful home at Christmas time.

This Christmas we drove to Carolyn’s home to have dinner with the family. We drove up in the coach for a lovely Christmas dinner and get-together with Carolyn, Craig and family, Janice and the girls and their men.

The coach at Carolyn’s for Christmas night.

After the dinner and party, we spent the night there. Lavonne stayed in Carolyn’s home, I spent the night in the coach. And while it was a usual cold December night, I slept comfortably in the warm coach – thanks to Carolyn’s electricity and our little electric heater we use in the coach when hooked to 120v. Tomorrow, the 26th, is Gale’s and my 65th birthday, and we’ll drive up to visit them and take part in a birthday open house at their place in Gridley.

Friday, December 26, Day 2: Stockton to Gridley, Ca via I-5, SR99: 102 miles.

We arrived at Gale and John’s in the early afternoon and parked the coach. I hooked up to their electricity again, and was able to keep the coach warm without using our propane. We didn’t know what lie ahead…

The clutter of cars at Gridley.  I did not have a good time with all those people there. It was a zoo and I spent most of the time in the coach!

Soon there were over 50 people visiting, far more than we anticipated. We also thought this was about our 65th birthday, but were told that it was an open house for friends and family to visit with Gale and John’s kids who were visiting in Gridley for the first time in many years.

The Sample clan, top:  Kevin, John, Gale, Jill, Craig. Middle three Kelli, MacKenzie, Kyleigh. Front: Nathan & Preston.

The house was way too small for so many people and even standing room was crowded. It was pure chaos! I don’t do chaotic events, not even crowds if I can help it, so I stayed in the coach except for a few forays into the house for munchies. Even Lavonne stayed much of the time in the coach, avoiding the chaos.

My lovely wife Lavonne, left, and my twin sis Gale, right, before the crowd arrived.

We spent the night in the coach after a bit of time visiting family that evening. We counted on having time alone with family the next morning before we would leave for home. We slept warm and comfortably.

Dale and friend; two old dawgs cuddle before it got crazy.

Saturday, December 27, Day 3: Gridley to home via SR99, I-5: 119 miles.

We did visit with family after all of them finally got up. The living room was a jumble of bodies and sleeping bags as there were not enough beds or bedrooms in the little house to accommodate them all. Thank God for our motor home and all the convenience we enjoyed there! John and I drove into town early and had a good breakfast at the Black Bear cafe. Eventually all the bodies were up and around and we visited ’til noon. And it was good to see them all without the mad chaos of 50 friends and other family members!

We headed for home at noon, arriving without incident a bit after 2 O’clock. I had the coach emptied and the tanks dumped in quick time, and was finally back in the slower pace of our own, private and peaceful home.

This is one trip I wouldn’t do again! I guess I need more details about what we’re getting ourselves into. But Gale and I turned 65 without any fanfare for ourselves, and after all, who needs fanfare to get old?!

About FishWisher

Over the years I have posted many exciting fishing and boating stories here, but now in my seventies, it was time to sell the boat and find less demanding pastimes. All the fishing stories are still here! I will now post my travels aboard the motorhome and other activities. I hope y'all will still enjoy the fishing and boating adventures and perhaps peek in on my post-boating activities on occasion. Thanks for dropping in and I hope you enjoy your visit.
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