Catching Up

May 21-23 — Sacramento and Grass Valley are two wonderful places in which to spend time, especially if you’ve got hosts as fabulous as our friends, Mark and Simone.  We had never spent time in either place, and lucky us, we were treated to first-class accommodations and service and at their homes in both of these two Cali locales.  We need to come back here more often, and after all the fun we had together this past weekend, we are certainly going to!

Fred & Mark enjoying retirement on the back deck of their Grass Valley home
Fred & Mark have this relaxing in retirement thing down!

We actually met Simone and Mark two years ago when we were on a Galapagos Islands cruise together.  From the get-go we enjoyed spending time together on our schooner, and when our vacation ended, we kept in touch and promised to look them up when we made it out to California.

Mark & Fred enjoying some relax time on our schooner in the Galapagos Islands
Fred and Mark chillin’ on the aft deck of our schooner down in the Galapagos Islands back in June 2013

We did that, and happy were each of us to re-connect and catch up this past weekend.  We picked up right were we left off two years ago, but now life is even better as Mark and Simone have both retired!  In referring to his retirement, Mark stated, “I was born to do this!”  Clearly retirement agrees with all of us!

It was a treat, as it always is, to see friends on the road, and it was an added bonus to join them at their mountain home in Grass Valley for a couple nights in addition to being in Sacramento.

Bonnie Raitt in concert at the Strawberry Festival

To kick off Memorial Day weekend, we went to the Strawberry Music Festival on Friday night in the old mining town of Nevada City to hear 10-time Grammy winner / singer / songwriter / activist / blues guitarist, Bonnie Raitt.  We came back into Nevada City the following day to stroll around, have lunch, enjoy a celebratory cocktail, and do what we did best during our entire visit… relax!

Fred & Mark enjoying retirement on the back deck of their Grass Valley home
Fred & Mark have this relaxing in retirement thing down!

Our lovely hostess, Simone, prepared delicious meals.  Mark prepared appropriate beverages.  I attempted to get caught up on some travel logistics as well as with my tardy blog posts.  It’s been tough getting much done these past three weeks with spotty Internet service, and grateful I was that Mark insists on strong connectivity at both homes!

As this long holiday weekend comes to a close, we can’t stop thinking about the terrific time we had together and the many adventures that await us.  Simone and Mark… we are grateful to you for being such wonderful, generous hosts to us this past weekend.  We look forward to spending lots more time together in the days and years to come….