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Day 188 -193 Visiting Brother in Paradise (Photo's Added)

We made it to my brothers place in the foothills east of Paradise, CA (Yankee Hill to be specific) last night. Had a nice visit with them.

sunny 67 °F

We'll probably stay here several days. I've got some chores to work on, so will keep this visit to one blog entry (most likely) - and actually be able to catch up the last several days (I expect). Sorry to be so lazy, as I've said before - I've developed a whole new respect for all those pioneers (and others) who kept daily journals! It really requires a lot of self discipline.

Arthur used to have terrible cell phone/internet connection up here, but just recently bought into a local wireless provider and set up his home wireless network - so I've got a good connection.

He and Melody also recently bought a really nice Karoke system (boy, it's harder to sing to then I thought! We're pretty bad.)


Mom & Arthur went to Church Saturday and enjoyed Jim McCall's (a cousin) Sabbith School Class. They liked Jim's class, but neither cared for the main sermon as much. However neither wanted to offend the other, so they both just sat through it. Later, my cousins Steven & Jim came over (they also live close by) and a few other folks and we all took a hike down the road to see the view over the Feather River valley.


And of course, the view from the end of the hike (maybe 3/4 mile from my brother's place):


My niece, Jessica, and her boyfriend Brad were also there, but elected not to join us for the hike.


I should also apologize, my nephew Jeremy and his girlfriend Amanda also came by a couple of times and we met up with him a couple more times in town - but somehow I forgot to pull my camera out! I'll have to make up for that some other time (I'm sorry Jeremy).

Saturday night, several of us went to a lesson in ballroom dancing (the Rhumba I think, although I did it more like "The Cottage Cheese"). We stayed afterwards for an hour or so for a community dance (some Rhumba music) and had a lot of fun. Fortunately, my camera stayed well out of sight.

Sunday, we tried to work on Dad's taxes (Ugh), got a little done on them I guess. Enough that I filled in a few important holes and realized that I'll need to just buckle down and take a week or so to finish the job (after I get home).

Later Sunday afternoon, my brother took me up to an old gravel quarry where we met my cousin Jim for some target practice. Seems that Art and Jim have become fond of shooting, including loading their own bullets (we picked up our shells after each round, Jim even put a tarp on the ground to make his shell capture easier).


Guess shooting get's kind of expensive if you buy all your ammunition. I'm no Annie Oakley, but didn't embarrass myself too badly.


Later in the evening, Art showed off some of his softer side (actually, several evenings while we visited - may be a reason I didn't get much blogging done as we often stayed up visiting into the evening?)


He was also able to locate this old button accordian that my dad used to play to wake us up on occasion (my memories of the beast aren't so fond as a result?) Thought some folks may get a kick out of seeing it again - Jeremy has requested it as something with which to remember his grandfather. It still plays OK, but needs a few buttons.


Monday Art & Melody took Mom & I into Chico and did some sightseeing. We tried to visit the Bidwell Mansion, but it was closed on Monday's. I got some exterior shots however (the entryway shot is through the front door glass).


We also checked out Bidwell Park, one of the 25 largest urban parks in America. Art & Melody got a little taste of what travelling with me is like (on this trip anyway) when I started asking them to stop so I could take some pictures! (And see - I do use a tripod on occasion, rare occasions, but on occasion).


Bidwell Park has been used for several movies, including 1937's The Adventures of Robin Hood starring Errol Flynn (I had no idea some of that was filmed in Chico!). I don't think this was part of the set necessarily, but liked the shot.


Also, there is a small dam on the Chico River that allows water behind it to pool up and be used as a swimming pool. They even have built a concrete floor and sides - although the river still flows through the swimming area. Nobody was in the water today (kind of cold), but in the summer it really gets used.


This was a really nice park, seemed like a good opportunity to get one of those 'You Were There' shots with my brother Art and his wife, Melody plus Mom and then I to the right.


Now that Art & Melody got a taste of how the trip works (with all the photography), they got into the swing of things a little bit and showed us an area with very quaint cottages. Art thinks these may have been built by a movie studio in the hopes of setting up shop in Chico, but the Chamber of Commerce didn't know anything about it, so maybe not. Anyway, they were clearly built by the same developer and 'quaint' was part of the design (Check the roof out on this first one).


We also went into the heart of old downtown to eat. Across the street was a very interesting hardware store. Art says our Dad used to love going here - I checked it out and can understand why - they have a very unusual selection of stuff. So - for Dad where ever you are (for those who don't know us, Dad passed away a couple of years ago):


The old downtown area of Chico looks a like this:


At it's heart is a very chic restaurant where we decided to eat. Surprise, surprise - it turns out this is in the building where the original Bidwell hardware store was. Very old downtown core! Since John Bidwell founded Chico, I guess you could say we covered historic Chico today.


Tuesday, Art & I went back to Nevada City - maybe for the last time? I had some legal work to do with the real estate agent, we checked Dad's place for tools that were supposedly left behind (took a few back, but there weren't enough to bother with). Art did bring back a French Prune tree at my insistance (they'd all been waxing eloquently at how good they were, so I insisted). And since we were in that neighborhood anyway, Art went to an organic farm supply store they liked and bought a bunch of stuff Melody had requested (and a couple more items) - Peaceful Valley Farm & Garden Supply.

On the way to Nevada City, Art's new 2002 Ford F250 broke down, so the trip took us an extra three hours to have it towed back to Chico and switch cars, so I decided not to try to leave Wednesday afterall - need a little time to pack up again. Here's our infamous truck:


BTW - the area the truck died is just NE of Marysville, surrounded by rice fields. When I've driven through this area in the past, there have always been birds - lots and lots of birds. So after our business was done in Nevada City, I asked Art to stop along Matthews Lane here just so I could try to get some more bird shots (NO - I am NOT a birder - well, not a full fledged birder anyway?) ...and as intrepid blog readers already know by now, these are thumbnails, click to enlarge or see if I was able to correctly identify the bird...




After we got back to my brothers house, he and Melody couldn't wait to start working on their garden. Mom also joined the fun (looked too much like work to me however).


So Wednesday I'm working on repacking the RV, cleaning up my PC's hard drive, etc. etc. etc. We'll be leaving Thursday morning and generally heading north - or somewhere anyway... In the meantime, for those who've never visited my brothers place (way out in the hills), here are a few shots of the place I thought we ought to get before leaving town -



Miles Driven - 0
Camped at My brothers 'estate (2.5 acres) in the wilderness east of Paradise (They're off the grid, OK? That qualifies as wilderness in my book.)

Provisions Obtained - Gas (3 gallons in can to make sure I got back to town before I ran out!) I seem to recall that we also did a shopping trip to Wal-mart, as Mom needed a prescription filled again, but have otherwise forgotten the details.

Posted by jl98584 17:43 Archived in USA Tagged family_travel

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Nice to see updated photos of the family! (Hi everybody!). The mountain cabin brings back pleasant memories of the family reunion there (and fire!). BTW, really cool photo of the robin there! (I originally wrote "cool robin shot" but then thought I should change it after reading about your target shooting practice--ggg).

by TexasRTJ

I was confused by this picture of Art's house toward the bottom here, and I think maybe Robert is confused too. I thought it looked like their cabin we had our reunion at, but you said this was their Yankee Hill place and across the street from Steve and Danella. As I look closer, it does look a bit different than the cabin. So they must have built this since Bob and I visited them once several years ago.

by msj

Yes, it is different then the cabin that we had our family reunion at, this one is much smaller. It probably looks similar because Art built them both and probably used similar style & materials. Not sure when he built this one.

by jl98584

Hi, I see a little clarification is needed. The cabin in question is a small cabin which I built on our Yankee Hill property when we first moved there, it is now used for storage and hobbies ( wine celler and reloading shop) and yes someday it will be finished to just like all my other Johnston projects Ha Ha. AJ

by amj

fooled me! It bears a certain family resemblance, but now that I look closely it is smaller, no stairs on the side, etc. You seem to be pretty handy in the construction business, whether you finish your projects or not!

by TexasRTJ

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