An extremely popular Shanghai restaurant has crossed the Pacific Ocean, and opened a branch here, in Silicon Valley, California.  That was a year ago.  We have tried several times to get a reservation there, with no luck.  We tried to get reservations when Claire and Evan were here at Christmas, but no.

oTwo weeks ago, Glenn asked where I would like to go for dinner on Valentines Day.  We have tickets for the new Cirque du Soleil that evening, with our good friends Karen and Robert.  An early dinner would be a lovely start for our evening!  On a whim, we checked on Din Tai Fung, and WOW, we got a reservation at 4:30pm, giving us lots of time to get to the 7:30 curtain call for Cirque.

In just ten days time, we are heading to Florida, to visit my brother and sister in law, in their condo in Fort Pierce.  The note I got from them last evening told of weather that was drastically different from what we have been having here.  He said that it is hot and sunny there, temperatures in the low 80’s  (F) and no possibility of precipitation for the duration of our visit.  That should delight me, but …  Heat is no friend of mine, so I’ve not REALLY minded the rain, and cool temperatures of the past couple of months.

 

Today was a nice change of pace from our cool grim grey days.  Bold sunshine stirred legions of  birds to sing their hearts out in absolute delight.  Luckily, the sunshine was not accompanied by it’s less desirable cohort HEAT.  A cool breeze kept the brilliance down to an acceptable level, since even February has been known to have its momentary heat waves here.  A year ago, Willa was dashing into the ocean surf in Santa Cruz, playing with several other toddlers that seemed oblivious to the nip of the icy water!  This year, the beaches will be eerily quiet, since the major route to get there is full of rocks, mud and yellow police tape!screen-shot-2017-02-12-at-10-59-14-am

We have received more rain in the past six weeks than this region has had in many years.  So much in fact that several local reservoirs are OVER full, causing local officials to try to find a way to drain some of the surplus.

screen-shot-2017-02-12-at-10-44-40-am

There have been SO many weather warnings lately that sand bags are the MUST have item on everyone’s list.  Flooding is a frequent event, as are landslides.  Property inspectors are working 24/7, trying to keep up with tagging homes that are no longer safe.  Many of the homes that have been condemned are in tremendously expensive areas, but not so much now!

screen-shot-2017-02-12-at-10-51-49-amA gorgeous 3800 sq foot home with stunning views of the valley below, that was perched on the precipice of a mountain may have just been red-tagged.  Its foundation had begun to crack badly, as the ground beneath it has seceded in the onslaught of raging flood waters.  The red tag means that NO ONE is allowed to enter the premisses, including the homeowners.

After working and saving so you could purchase this remarkable property you are now homeless.

You never thought this would happen to YOU, but it just did, courtesy of Mother Nature, the great equalizer!

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