Good morning and greetings, vacation fans. I normally spend the first part of the winter break meditating along the lovely fairways of the Palm Valley Country Club in Palm Desert , but due to programming changes we decided to stay here at home on the central coast. I miss the desert experience-nothing like cascading waterfalls, palm trees swaying in the wind and orange, grapefruit and tangerine trees in full bloom in late December. Throw in the San Jacinto mountains changing color as often as Henry Paulson changes his plans for use of the bailout money and you can imagine what Moses saw when he first ventured to the desert on a horse with no name. It must have felt good to get out of the rain.
Anyway, it’s been clear and cold here in Santa Cruz as the rest of the nation has been bombarded by snow, ice and blizzard conditions. It’s been particularly frigid in New York. How cold has it been? It was so cold in New York City last week that Bernard Madoff asked if he could actually go to hell early to warm up. And it was so cold that the Statue of Liberty was actually holding her torch under her dress. Thank you, Jay Leno and his staff writers.
Staying in the area has allowed me to catch some coastal highlights that I normally miss at this time of year. Our photo funhouse today features moments from our twelvest of months. We begin and end with sunrise splendor from Lighthouse Point. The rainbow hails from Christmas Eve. The skies had been gray all day but just before sunset the sun dropped thru and horizon was suddenly flooded with bright yellow light streaming from the north. At the same time, a vivid double rainbow appeared in the east which I shot over the trees at Natural Bridges State Park. I hit the coast as the colors of this beauty were fading but seeing the rainbow flowing into the ocean with the plethora of white water was just an amazing sight. It would have even been more amazing if I had recorded it digitally rather than in my offshore memory banks.
2008 has been an challenging year, with the mortgage crisis, the stock market crashing and the Yankees not making the playoffs. And according to Conan O’Brien, “The White House staff has been briefing Barack Obama’s team on a series of worst-case scenarios that could face the country after President Bush leaves office. Apparently, the absolute worst case scenario is that Bush doesn’t leave office. On the positive side, the New York Giants won the Super Bowl, the Giants won the Super Bowl and the Giants won the Super Bowl. I’m really hoping for good things in 2009, like the Giants repeating as Super Bowl champs but I’m not holding my Eli Manning breath on that one. But fortunately, Ford Motors is working on a brand new car called the Fusion. It’s a hybrid that runs on a combination of gas and bailout money-Jay Leno.
Now here’s some more good humor, these jokes courtesy of my weight-training (he says it will make him quicker) son, Jason. A man walks into a psychiatrist’s office with a cucumber up his nose, a carrot in his left ear and a banana in his right ear. He says, “What’s the matter with me?” The psychiatrist says, “You’re not eating properly.” And a woman gets on a bus with her baby. The bus driver says: “That’s the ugliest baby that I’ve ever seen. Ugh!” The woman goes to the rear of the bus and sits down, fuming. She says to a man next to her: “The driver just insulted me!” The man says: “You go right up there and tell him off – go ahead, I’ll hold your monkey for you.”
So that’s our last blog for 2008. I hope you’ve enjoyed these stream of unconciousness postings as they have been picked up by my medulla oblongata for the 2009 season. Yesterday (Sunday) was this year’s daily double as I shot both a gorgeous sunrise and a dazzling sunset. Combine that with ten hours of NFL football and some Kobe Bryant NBA action and I’m a happy camper. So bring on the NFL playoffs and congratulations to the Golden State Warriors for knocking off the world champion Boston Celtics last week. Now go back to Maui, Don Nelson. So enjoy the final days of 2008, have a fantabulous New Year and we’ll catch you in 2009. Aloha, mahalo, peace and later, Sunrise Santa Cruz fans.