Instead of noisy fireworks to usher out the year, here's the exuberant King's Singers with a wonderful rendition of the Overture to the Barber of Seville.
2016 was a slow year for us travel-wise but we did get around a little. We enjoyed Rajasthan in India and crossed the Taj Mahal off the bucket list. Srinigar in Kashmir was our most exotic destination—staying on a houseboat ala A Passage to India by E.M. Forster. Getting to India, via Emirates First Class, was a twice-in-a-lifetime experience. Our next trip with them will be back in Business Class but we'll muddle through. The Uncruise Cruise up to Princess Louisa sound with Stella and Jim was memorable with a stop in Victoria for a city tour from Len and Karen Vopnfjord and in Seattle, the Dale Chihuly museum and a dinner with Henry and Axel. Jim, Stella, Richard and I all bought hats together at the legendary Byrnie Utz store. I finally got to the Holocaust Museum in DC and also to Washington's Mt. Vernon and Jefferson's Monticello homes. We enjoyed our yearly trek up to Benicia to visit Richard's brother's families for the Thanksgiving holiday with a splendid brunch at Zuzu and Debra's lovely home. The Christmas trip to Las Vegas tested our patience as the traffic was horrible but the two Cirque du Soleil shows: O and Love made it all worth while.
We ate well during the year and especially enjoyed one of Roseanne's splendid Apple Pies—one of the best I've ever tasted and I've tried a lot of pie. Ashley and Dave introduced us to Luke's Lobster where we had both lobster and crab rolls in DC and in Vegas. Linda Katmarian's Baked Kataifi Custard was dreamy. The Peking Duck at the Peking Gourmet in DC is still as good as ever. Humberto and Maria's homemade tamales were a huge treat. We discovered McConnells divine Turkish Coffee ice cream only to have it discontinued at Albertson's. The Grilled Octopus at B and B (I believe it is on most of the Batali menus) in the Venetian in Las Vegas was splendid. Another great discovery—the tiny prime grade ribeye rounds from Costco; whoever uses the words tiny and Costco in the same sentence? My new friend Lori Austen's chocolate truffles were mind-bending.
We remodeled and sold a condo in Oxnard and bought and remodeled a house in Temecula. I took a couple of writing classes and joined a writing group where I made 5 new friends. Nancy took me on as her assistant editor of the Bottom Shelf Volunteers Newsletter and Richard and I continue to enjoy working in the store. I managed to pull off six acoustic neuroma support group meetings. Had a wonderful time playing golf with Shari and her father, Bob.
Our great grand niece gave birth to another boy making us a great great grand aunt and uncle once again.
On my to-do list for 2016 was learning to play Mah Jong which will carry over to 2017 along with learning the ukelele (our neighborhood group) or the concertina—still trying to decide. The sounds emitting from a beginning concertinist might kill the cats which possibility is pushing me in the ukelele direction. Other than those two things I have no resolutions except to stay alive for another birthday in November.
Oh yes...and I wrote 184 blog posts. Happy New Year!!!