09 July 2007

fourth of july holiday

I made a road trip to Lake Tahoe, CA to meet my host family last Wednesday. It was a nice drive...apart from being tired and feeling sick by the time I got there probably due to a mixture of dehydration after a strong coffee and a coke and a different altitude. I laid down and rested most of the afternoon. When my family came home from the beach, we all went out for dinner at a restaurant in Tahoe City. After a play at the park we sat ourselves down for the fireworks spectacular to celebrate fourth of July, American Independence Day.

Thursday we spent the whole day at the "beach". It's a little sand laid area that people treat like a beach. (But is it really a "beach" without the sea??) I spent a good part of the morning sitting on my towel reading a book. My host dad took the boys to a nearby creek to fish for crawdads (yabbies) and minnows and guppies. I sat with the boys while we ate lunch and then my host dad bought us all ice creams. Then I watched one kid or another throughout the rest of the day. We all went to the pool near the beach for a swim. Mostly B and T climbed all over me, and I threw them up so they'd land with a splash or I would chase them and other such play. T went off fishing again with his dad and my host mum and Y napped. The bottom of the lake is very rocky and B and I spent quite a bit of time looking for interesting rocks. We found some too. Then B and I walked up the beach a bit and out a pier to watch some jet skis. On our way back we stopped and skipped stones on the still water where the creek is about to meet the lake. Then we went and found T and my host dad at the creek and hung out there for a while. Eventually we all went home after some time on the main pier having a drink and chatting and mostly fishing.

Standing in Lake Tahoe and T attempting to catch minnows and fishing on the main pier

Friday morning they went for a bike ride and I went for a walk. I walked up hill a way taking photos of the american nature...different trees, bluejays and chipmunks. Still don't have a photo of a squirrel yet. The chipmunks were pretty cute. I went home and slept for a couple of hours since I'd woken so early. Then when my family came back we went to the beach again. T and his dad went off fishing again. I think that was T's favourite thing to do as he was always asking to go and spent most of the day doing it. And I don't think his dad minded going along with him. I played in the water with B and Y. When T and his dad went to the main pier to fish some more, Y went with them. B was busy building a sandcastle. Actually, he was building an evil fortress and I sat with him to line the protective wall with rocks I dug up. It looked pretty good until the waves got a little bigger and washed it all away. We went home pretty late that day and after feeding the hungry mob the boys played air guitar to music until it was time for bed.

Lake Tahoe and a bluejay and a cute little chipmunk (to my surprise they actually have long tails)

Hiking in the CA bushland and love the texure of these tall trees and B busy building with Y playing in the water

Saturday they headed off to a Hyatt hotel. My host dad, being a doctor, had done a favour for the General Manager's kid last time (or something like that) and he offered them free use of the pools for a day. So that's what we did. And it just so happened that the Hyatt was further around the lake and across the border in the state of Nevada. I was very excited about that. Now I've been to Nevada as well!! It was a hot day, though I didn't go in. The boys enjoyed the swim. I ducked into the shop inside and bought some keepsakes and some postcards. Then we ate lunch which was ordered from the restaurant inside. After a bit more swim we went inside to the arcade and played games and the boys won some toys. We got back to the house and then I left to drive home. I drove straight through; 3.5hrs. It was a nice drive--much more pleasant than the trip there. It was fun to be able to make the roadtrip.

Me in Nevada!! and Y shooting the bad guys (he thought he was but he'd put no quarters in) and the scenery on the trip home

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