Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thanksgiving at the Beach

Today is the Thanksgiving holiday. Alma and I made the customary feast (rotisserie chicken, au gratin potatoes, stuffing, green bean casserole, sweet potatoes cranberry sayce and chocolate pecan pie). More accurately, I made the potates and stuffing, Alma made the green bean casserole and sweet potatoes and we bought a pre-rotiseried chicken from Ralph's Grocery Store. Yum. But we had to do penance for our over-indulgence, so it was off to the beach for us.

The windy weather I wrote about last week has for the most part abated and, while the chilly temperatures remain, we were blessed today with an absolutely cloudless sky and exceptionally clear skies. The Santa Monica bay is framed by the Santa Monica mountains to the north and north west. Directly east and at a greater distance lie the Sierra Nevada mountains. Today the skies and air were so clear that one could face to the northwest and then rotate all the way around to the southeast and see nothing but mountains.

The cold temperatures mean that snows have already begun to fall in the Sierra Nevada mountains and at lower elevations than customary. I could actually see the snows on the tops of some of the mountains in the Sierra and pointed it out to Alma while we were walking.

It being Thanksgiving, I gave some thought to what I had to be thankful about. I came up with three specifics: I'm thankful that I'm married to Alma. If you have taken the time to visit her website (, you have seen the beauty she has created where none existed before. I actually get to live with that beauty every day. It's like waking up each day in the Louvre Museum. I am so blessed.

I am also thankful that we had saved enough money that this most recent bout of unemployment has not really meant any serious dislocation for us. At least not yet. When I think about how bad some of my fellow Californians have it, I am again truly blessed that Alma and I continue to enjoy a high degree of financial security.

But the thing I was most thankful for, as I walked along the beach, was that I had all five of my senses. Today, I valued most highly smell and taste at home and sight at the beach. But really, I shudder to think how much poorer I would be if I lacked any of the five senses.

I am thankful that I have the beach to walk on every day the weather allows.

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