San Diego Travelogue – Part 8: This time more of a FAMILYlogue….

Wilma and I got up Sunday morning and took our one foray out of San Diego – and headed for Los Angeles for two reasons – the first being a chance to reunite with some relatives that I hadn’t seen in 35 years.  The second – well, that will wait until the next entry….

We were planning on staying overnight, but my, how we packed lightly!  One bag served us fine as we headed north on highway 5 – and interestingly enough, out in that part of the country, the roads are referred to as “THE” 5… or “THE” 8…. Unlike the Chicago area which ignores numbers at all (The Kennedy or the Eisenhower) … or much of the rural part of the country, which merely refer to the roads by where they go … or who they go to… LONDON road, or WATERTOWN road, or PETERSON Road…

We passed through La Jolla, Del Mar, Camp Pendleton (which is very large indeed) and on up into San Clemente, Irvine, and on into Anaheim, finally landing in Whittier at the home of my first-cousin-once-removed…. Barb Revueltas.

So there’s some explaining due here.  My grandfather Paul Ruud had piles of brothers and sisters, many of whom moved to California in the 50s or 60s… and their children are the folks I was going to meet again after so long.   Paul’s brothers out there included Rudy, Oliver and Gordon, and sisters Clara and Stella… (The Minnesota ones that ‘stayed put’ were Peter, Inga and Rikka .. with Rudy being the one who came back and forth to some degree….he had a very nice lake cabin north of us that was just a joy to visit….)

I had seen Barb recently – she had come to Minnesota a few summers ago for a college reunion, so we took the opportunity to get together … and a few years prior to that, she and her sister Charlotte came to Minnesota so Char could say her goodbyes … she was soon to die of cancer…. Clearly, Barb was my most recent contact, therefore, with the California Ruuds…..

FACEBOOOK has been a good place to be reunited at least electronically with many of them…. And it was Facebook that allowed us to plan and execute this meeting…. We were not to meet all of the relatives – Phil, Marilyn, Lee, Jan, Robert, and their spouses… but we did meet up with Barb’s brother David and his wife Luci (Barb and Dave belonged to Rudy…) and then also Sonia and her sister Margaret and her husband Craig (Sonia and Margaret belong to Gordy) … and of course, let us remember also Barb’s husband Art.

We drove into the yard right as noon, exactly as planned.  Barb greeted us at the door in her so gracious and fun manner.  We parked our stuff in the room as assigned us (with her grandmother’s bedroom set in it….) and got a tour of the place.  I was just tickled to see the pump organ that used to sit in the cabin up on Sand Lake, where Barb’s folks Rudy and Janet would spend their summers – it was a close to a place like ON GOLDEN POND as I had experienced…. Anyway, there stood that pump organ with the same regal bearing it had back then…. A glowing memory.

Art came home from running some errands, so we finally met him – He greeted us warmly and stayed that was the rest of or visit… he’s busy in the world of education, and clearly has pondered the issues in that area and is very well versed in it all…. He and Barb both made fine conversation partners…..

And then BRING ON the family …. The rest arrived by 2 pm, so we gathered out on the back yard patio where we visited, discussing our memories of each other’s parents – and discovering that we so thought so very highly of each other’s parents – not only as relatives, but as real people.  During this time, we also learned more about Art’s family – not the least of which is his uncle Sylvestre, who is a rather well-known Mexican composer.  I found out that they all thought I was the fishing fanatic of the family – and yes, whenever up at Rudy’s cabin, I would rush down to the dock as soon as was socially favorable to enjoy the water and the fishing.

This is really first time I had met Craig and Margaret – and so nice to meet them!  I remembered David and Luci from their visits to my childhood home back in the 60s – and I was not at all surprised to find them pretty much the same fine people.  Sonia – she of the light and happy soul – was so good to visit with.  I thank them all for the fine time…..

Barb and Art’s son Alec was home from college, so I got to meet him… he is a true second cousin, as all the others fit into that ‘first cousin once removed’ category…. off to college he went that evening… and it sure seems he’s as active as his mom and dad.

We concluded the assembly with a very nice dinner that Barb and Art produced – a chicken enchilada type thing – and Barb, correct me if I’m wrong about that…. Plenty of food, plenty of conversation, and plenty of rejoining of family ties that weren’t all that severed anyway, regardless of the passage of time.

So the evening was ours – Wilma, Barb, Art and me.  We sat out in the back again, overlooking the woods and enjoying a cool evening, and some good conversation.  An OH SO DELIGHTFUL time!!  I wish I had taken more pictures… I was so busy visiting that taking pictures slipped the old brain… I even had to steal a pic of Barb and Art from Barb’s website….  (by the way …one more RUUD relative coming up ….. )

Jan 26 barbinart  Our WONDERFUL hosts – Barb and Art Revueltas

jan 26 David and Lucy    David and Luci … I didn’t focus so well… sorry…..

Jan 26 Craig Margaret Sonia   Craig, Margaret and Sonia

jan 26 Sue   Wilma enjoying her chat with all these new relatives….