Wait….Can it be considered a road trip if part of the trip was airborn? I mean I did drive 50 miles from Springville to Salt Lake City. And then flew to San Jose. Then me and Kathie drove to Benecia. From there it was a drive to Placerville. Then to concord, and on to Felton / Santa Cruz. Finally back to San Jose airport, and then fly back to Utah. About 500 miles driving All in four days. What a blast!
So the story is something like this: Went home to California last week. All my siblings – my brother and 3 sisters – were all together in one place for the first time in 8 years. Also got together with many cousins, second cousins, and relatives on my Mom’s side of the family – The Miller’s – which we haven’t done since……well pretty much never. My mom was the youngest of 7 siblings. I was the youngest of 5 children. So most of my cousins remember me – if at all – as little Tommy, running around between the legs and whatever else little tikes like me used to do. In fact the last time I saw relatives on my Mom’s side of the family, was at her funeral many years back now. I was 14.
But thanks to cousin Earl, he invited the family to come celebrate his 60th birthday in Benecia last week. Since he is the founder of ReachOutBenicia.com, every year they hold a fundraiser. This year, it was a great 60’s bash held at the clock tower building. There was much music and mingling to be had! Earl has done an amazing job over the last 18 years helping people with drug and alcohol addiction.
Earl is also a writer, and writes for The Weekender magazine.
To all my family, cousins, second cousins, and significant others – thanks so much for a wonderful time, and a fantastic Friday night shindig, and Saturday afternoon BBQ. It was wonderful to catch up with all of you. I’m amazed we haven’t done it sooner. And thanks to those who came from other states – John from New Hampshire, Janice from Nevada, Ronnie and Emelia from Florida; Carolyn, Bob, and Vida from SoCal; Sue, Kath, Cheryl and Dan from NoCal; and anyone else I’ve failed to mention.
Thanks also to Jane Cooper Miller for all the unnoticed hard work and preparation that went into the BBQ shindig, and opening her house up to all of us! And to the doggies, who duly sniffed out the soles ….er….souls…..of all present.
Of course no adventure would be complete without a little jammin – so thanks to cousin Carolyn Miller (a professional performer down in the SoCal area), and Carlos Reyes (famed instrumentalist), for the impromptu session in front of the miller family and friends audience of 35-40 or so. We played some covers of Dan Fogelberg, Beatles, James Taylor, and John Denver. We slid into Route 66. I played some originals, as well as did Carol. And Carlos gave us all some schooling in a medly or two on the auto harp.
(I’m sure some video footage will be forthcoming!)
P.S. Thanks Duece for coming and enjoying the evening with me and my fam. on Friday night. And tell Kim thanks for letting you out of your cage. (you beast, you).