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Saturday, April 20, 2019

Que Afortunado

Surprise, I'm in San Diego! To celebrate my retirement (most likely temporary) I got on a plane to visit my cousin in San Diego.  It was so relaxing when I visited last year that I decided what better way to count the days before our big move than to spend a few of them here.

South Fortuna Peak

My cousin was in Hawaii with his family having some relaxation time of his own so after I picked up my rental car I headed out to Mission Trails Regional Park. This body of mine has put on weight sitting in the car all day driving around the state of Wisconsin in the snow for work.  Time to get back in shape!

It is Spring Break here in San Diego, but I still ran into a group of kids on a field trip of some sort.  What a beautiful place to learn about the plants and wildlife of the place they call home.  It is very green here right now due to recent heavy rainfall amounts.

Visitor Center seen from the trail

The Visitor Center is a great place to start your learning, with lots of windows to entice you outside into the chaparral and sage scrub habitat.

Caterpillar Phacelia - 

Just because it is a dry climate, doesn't mean there aren't spring wildflowers to enjoy.

Sticky Monkey Flower

And though my afternoon walk was mostly clouded over, I noted there were plenty of shaded oases to rest on a sunnier day.

I wasn't ready to climb mountains yet, in fact I stumbled and twisted my ankle after 15 minutes for absolutely no reason at all.  But I walked it off and kept on going, saving loftier ambitions for another day.

No shortage of lizards to be seen dashing into the bushes as I approached.  I'm no herpetologist, but most likely a sagebrush lizard or a western fence lizard is what I photographed below.  Apparently the underside is a big help in identification so next time I'm out looking at lizards I'll have to see if I can at least get a partial view.

All of the plants here are foreign to a Northerner, I'm sure those children on their field trip learned more than I did.

Greenspot Nightshade

Around every turn - something new!

Blue Dicks

It didn't take long to shed my stress and my winter blues!

And what a joy to see more children fly past me, enjoying it as much as I was.

How fortunate (Que Afortunado!) to arrive in time to catch some California Poppies still blooming...

California Poppies

...and hopefully I'll see many more blooms as the days go on!


  1. Very cool! Retirement, travel trailer, Newfoundland - all really good things. I am looking forward to photos from Newfoundland. Suzanne at spent a month there in 2017 and it was just so beautiful. When we went to the Maritimes we didn't go and I have always regretted that decision. Enjoy the next phase.