Alright, I'm only falling a bit behind... My next big adventure of July 2008 was a trip to Big Basin, California for the not-so-annual J.D. Clark Reunion. I flew to San Jose while the rest of my family drove from Wyoming. I'd rented a fancy Dodge Charger online - my Dad was going to drive it back to the airport with me and he thought that might be a fun car to drive. Yet somehow, when I got to my highly-anticipated cool-oozing rental car, there was not a sleek Dodge Charger sitting there waiting for me, but a light blue boat of a car - a Grand Marquis. My first reaction was to check the number again and make sure I had the right spot. My second reaction was to look around and make sure nobody saw me getting into this ugly thing. I swear you could fit 5 dead bodies into the trunk! It had to be a Mobster's dream car! Once I got going though, I had to admit that the seats were pretty comfy...
I got there a bit before the fam, so I passed the turnoff for Big Basin and headed on down to Santa Cruz to grab a bite to eat. I didn't want to stray too far, so I stopped at the first cafe I saw and sat, ate, and read a book for a couple of hours. It was nice to relax alone and not have anywhere to be. Ah, independence...
We all met up in Big Basin and went to Uncle Dale's campsite for some grub. I met some of my 2nd cousins that I hadn't seen in decades. I have to say, I'm related to some pretty good-lookin' folks! All of my grandma's siblings were there and it was awesome to be with so much family - and to realize that I did remember most of them from some function or other.
On Friday we spent the day at the Santa Cruz boardwalk going on rides, eating corn dogs and funnel cakes, playing mini-golf and arcades, and getting sunburned. There was a concert on the beach that night - Blue Oyster Cult. Yes, yes...they played the infamous "More Cowbell" song. We walked along the beach and ate some amazing seafood on the pier that night. It was a great day! Too bad the drive back up to camp made us more sick than the rides on the boardwalk!
The next day we went for a drive up Hwy 1. We saw a lighthouse, some tide pools, Pebble Beach, and some guys kite-surfing. It was tons of fun and nice to spend some quality family time. That night was the official "reunion" part of the reunion, so we all gathered and ate together. Grandma Brown had some interesting trivia questions about her parents and siblings. It was a lot of fun to see how much (or little) I knew about these relatives/ancestors. Tons of pictures were taken and it was an all-around good time.
Sunday morning our immediate-extended (?) family went for a small hike through the Redwoods. What awesome trees! I hadn't seen them since I was somewhere around 10. They are quite impressive! I love spending time with my extended family! They're so entertaining and cool (if I do say so myself!). Dad and I left that day, but it was a nice, relaxing (mostly) weekend in the California Redwoods. Here are some pics:
2 months ago