I haven’t been so motivated lately when it comes to working on the website or posting on the blog. I don’t know why, but I guess I’ve been too busy. Camping at Sequoia, mom visiting, dad visiting, planning for the wedding, etc. I even forgot to post these picturse from my dad’s visit:
All of the above pictures were taken at the San Juan Capistrano Mission. My dad and I had gone to two of the twenty one Californian missions. San Juan Capistrano, the seventh mission, was founded in November of 1776 (the same year our infant country separated from British rule after creating the Declaration of Independence). Friar Junipero Serra setup San Juan Capistrano along with another 8 missions. I enjoyed this mission more than the one at San Luis Rey (see pictures from a previous post) because it was a lot more festive. There was a Mexican band jamming on a stage in front of lots of tables full of people having lunch and talking. The one picture of me standing in front of a hole in this little room was where wine was supposedly first made in California.
I hope I’ll have a chance to see some more of these missions and do a little reading on their history. The other missions close to where we live are San Diego de Alcala, San Gabriel Arcangel, San Fernando Rey de Espana, and San Buenaventura.
This morning Jean and I got up and headed towards LA to visit the Ronald Reagan Library and Museum in Simi Valley. It was about 75 miles away, and my car troubles continued when a tractor trailer slung something up at my car that took a quarter sized chuck out of my front windsheild. This comes a few weeks after Big-O Tires in Ontario (4th Street in beside I-15 and Ontario Mills Mall) failed to fill or even check any of my car’s fluid levels during a routine oil change, causing my windsheild wiper fluid pump to burn up when the reservoir ran dry. I have now purchased a $56 pump and plan on having Big-O install it for “free” on Monday.
We finally made it to the Reagan Library and Museum around 11am, and we spent about 4 hours watching videos and checking out displays on his life. His museum was well done – informative and fun. We learned a lot about Reagan, and Jean expressed a new respect for the Great Communicator. I personally thought about how our country has gone to hell since his presidency, and I don’t blame Clinton for most of it, but the current president, GW Bush. The museum had quotes and videos where Reagan said the US doesn’t ever start wars and that we proceed with caution and understanding into conflicts, he expressed how important it was to engage our foes (his was Russia instead of the current “Axis of Evil” – Syria, Iran, North Korea, which Bush refuses to meet with), and he basically wanted to lead the American people by lowering taxes so they’d keep more of their money and also he wanted the government to play a limited role by simply protecting the American people. There were no policies that had the FBI/CIA spying on American citizens, there wasn’t billions of dollars being spent on a pre-emptive war based on lies, there wasn’t neglect of internal problems (he helped farmers, whereas Bush ignored Katrina victims), etc.
I believe Reagan was the best modern President. He listened to the American people and truly wanted what was best for our country. Jean was impressed by his expressions of love for his wife, Nancy. Jean also got a kick out of the fact that Reagan was a Democrat for a long time, and idolized FDR and believed in his social policies = especially the New Deal. Unfortunately, I think one of Reagan’s greatest accomplishments is one of the main reasons we find ourselves in our current dire situation. Had Reagan not upset the world balance – East vs West, US vs Russia, we wouldn’t have so many fanatical Islamic problems. Russia would still be trying to contain countries like Afghanistan, and we wouldn’t be allowed or most likely even consider occupying any countries that close to our nemesis. Russia counter-balanced the US, and the collapse of the Soviet Union has allowed a single country to emerge as the sole global power and move towards imperialism. I wish the world wasn’t moving towards a global ecomony, I wish Russia still controlled all the “former Soviet Republics” that are now Islamic countries (Kazakhstan, Tajikstan, etc), and I wish the US weren’t setting itself up for defeat after showing the rest of the world what bullies we are…
Now that I’ve stepped off my soapbox, here are some pictures of Jean and I at the Reagan Museum:
It was pretty cool getting to walk through the actual Air Force One plane Reagan used, but I only took 2-3 pictures while in the plane since Jean kept telling me to put my camera away because she thought the signs saying “ABSOLUTELY NO PHOTOGRAPHY” and all the little security cameras were serious. I didn’t get tackled by the Secret Service, and now I have my very own shot of the “situation room” area of Reagan’s Air Force One, woohoo! Also, right after Jean took the picture of my in front of Air Force One, an older couple came up and asked if I was from Alabama. I guess the ‘Bama’ shirt and UA hat gave me away. I told them we were from Alabama and we had gone to school in Tuscaloosa, and we chatted for a second until they said something like I should be wearing orange and blue. I shot them a bird and told them where to go, followed by a “Roll Tide!”… Just kidding, I laughed and thought to myself that these two should be tipping over cows in Opelika instead of checking out Air Force One in SoCal. 🙂
Tomorrow I’ll be waiting around the condo while our fix-it man re-groutes the tile in the upstairs bathroom. Jean had cut her foot on it a few weeks ago so I called the landlord about getting it repaired.
Look at the links to the right and use the “Contact Me” link to let me know if you prefer the little thumbnails for pictures in the blogs or if I should always post pictures to display like the ones in the website picture areas (like this).