Mission Bench Dedication

Getting There

Day One





How exhilarating this whole project has been, from the beginning on the anniversary of Guy's birthday, to it's culmination at the bench dedication at the Mission San Luis Rey in Oceanside, California.  The beginning of the mission bench project is detailed on another page.  Just click on the link to go there.  Here I will try to cover the events that took place on and around August 2nd, 2003.  I will use the words of as many participants as possible and include as many different pictures as I can fit on the pages, since we all know that pictures are worth a thousand words.............




My flight was supposed to leave fairly early Wednesday morning, but on Tuesday, I received a call from Nancy Smith's mother.  They were on their way to Nashville and wondered if I wanted to share their room that night.  Had never met these people and they were offering me a bed!  Now is this a group of great folks or what?  We flew out together on Wednesday and met up with Gail in Dallas.  That was a first for me, flying with Z friends.  When we arrived in LAX we were met by three other Z friends, Pat C., Ginger and Jill.  The intrepid Ginger was driving a rental van and she so very ably navigated to downtown LA where we met Rita for dinner at Clifton's Cafeteria.  It was a delightful beginning to what was to be a wonderful week.





The next day we got up early, (being that all of us were on eastern time) and decided to go see the Gene Autry Museum.  It wasn't far away and very shortly we were there.  While it's not as large as the Oklahoma City Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum, this one is very similar and we spent several hours exploring the exhibits.  Jill caught me back in the saddle again, (most likely the only way I'll ever be in proximity of a horse again), we oohed over the beautiful brass fire engine and aahed over the paintings.  After relaxing in the little cafe, (no! we didn't eat there), we took off to find a place called Pink's, a hot dog stand of great reputation, definitely not undeserved.  No wonder celebrities will stand in line for a meal there!   Been years since I have had a Polish dog.....














After Pink's, we drove down to Venice while we waited for Elise's plane to come in.  There wasn't much time so this was a driving tour. (Wasn't any parking places anyway!)  But we could say we had seen it, and the little homes, apartments were quaint, the streets narrow and the people (in cars, on foot, on bikes) were plentiful.  We picked up Elise, stuffed her suitcases in the back, her in the back seat (did I ever tell you I had once shoved into a VW with 16 other people?) and headed down to Oceanside.  It was after dark when we found Marty's Inn, but it was so wonderful to see that Sue Schuck, Maureen, Mary Lou (my partner and I finally had a face to face!!), and Rita were there ahead of us.  What a reunion this was getting to be.   It was Maureen's birthday and we celebrated next door at a Mexican restaurant.  (Someone else was celebrating a birthday, too, but that's another story.  We were together and that was what counted most.)

Pictures on the dedication pages courtesy of Pat Crumpler, Jill Panvini, Alize Patterson, Mary Lou Houck, Dianne Dennis, Cyndy Burge, Sue Kite, Elise Triniol, and the Mission San Luis Rey.   Drawing of Guy courtesy of Kathy Nance.  Please do not copy without permission. 


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