Fishing with Ivan Part 4 C

31 Mar

A Slice of Life

Bill Lites

The next day we crossed the Mohave Desert on our way to visit DiVoran’s brother, David, & his family in Bonita, CA.  David’s house was less than 10 miles from the Mexican border, and he regaled us with stories of illegals coming thru his property at night, on their way north.  We learned that David’s house keeper, Angelica, was the only daughter of a Mexican lawyer and could speak very little English.  She had come from Mexico City with her boyfriend, and was later abandon by him. She didn’t know very much about housekeeping, but boy could she cook!  I remember she cooked up the most delicious authentic Mexican style Chili Rellenos dinner for us that I have ever had.

Photo by Bill Lites

When we said goodbyes to David and his family, we headed north to visit our good friends Terry & Mary in Diamond Bar, CA.  I had worked with Terry on the Apollo Moon Landing program at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, before they had moved back to California for his work.  Terry and Mary were also in our Bible Study group, there in Titusville, for many years.  I remember when they took us to one of their favorite restaurants, Pinnacle Peak Stakehouse, for dinner that Terry warned me that the restaurant had a ‘No-Tie Policy’ and the servers would cut the necktie off any first-time customer, without any notice.  When we walked into the restaurant, I was stunned to see the ceiling was absolutely covered with neckties.  The service was great and the steaks were wonderful!

Photo Credit Yelp

After a great visit with Terry and Mary, we continued north, up the California coast on U.S. 101 & CA-1, to visit Hearst Castle (La Cuesta Encantada) located near San Simeon, CA.   William Randolph Hearst built the 42 bedroom, 61 bathroom, 19 sitting room castle (1919-1947) which is surrounded by 125 acres of gardens.  There are indoor and outdoor swimming pools, tennis courts, a movie theater, a zoo and a private airfield.  Hearst lived in the castle during most of the years of its construction, and until his death in 1951.  ‘The Big House’ was opened to the public in 1958, as a museum, operated by the California State Park System.  That was an amazing tour!  The tour lasted over an hour and a half, and even then we only saw a small portion of that huge edifice (68,500 sq. ft.).  We learned that much of the castle’s beautiful artwork and building materials were obtained from, as far away as, England and Spain and shipped all the way to the west coast of California. 


Continuing north on CA-1, along the picturesque California coast, we next stopped to check out the Monterey Bay Aquarium located in Monterey, CA.  This is a very unusual and spectacular attraction!  In addition to the amazing indoor tank (320,000 gallons), the aquarium also has a unique ‘Open Sea’ outdoor pool (1 million gallons), both of which have large viewing windows and are fed by filtered sea water from Monterey Bay.  From the observation deck, surrounding the Open Sea pool, we had a wonderful view of the Sea Otters eating and playing in the pool.

We stayed long enough to watch a diver, thru the glass wall of the large indoor pool, feed the fish.  I was surprise to see that the fish didn’t swarm around him all at once.  They came up to him, a few at a time, to grab a piece of food, and then they would casually swim back into the dark swaying kelp forest.  They must keep them well fed, as none of the different types of fish, jelly fish, or sharks seemed to be in a hurry to eat.  It all seemed quite casual, more like a dance routine. (I’m sure they had fed the sharks first).

—–To Be Continued—–

Bill is a retired Mechanical engineer living with his wonderful artist/writer wife, DiVoran, of 63 years in Titusville, Florida. He was born and raised in the Southwest, did a tour of duty with the U.S. Navy, attended Northrop University in Southern California and ended up working on America’s Manned Space Program for 35 years. He currently is retired and spends most of his time building and flying R/C model airplanes, traveling, writing blogs about his travels for Word Press and supporting his wife’s hobbies with framing, editing and marketing.  He also volunteers with a local church Car Care Ministry and as a tour guide at the Valiant Air Command Warbird Museum there in Titusville.  Bill has two wonderful children, two outstanding grandchildren, and a loving sister and her husband, all of whom also live in Central Florida, so he and DiVoran are rewarded by having family close to spend lots of quality time with.

One of Bill’s favorite Scriptures is:  John 10:10

2 Responses to “Fishing with Ivan Part 4 C”

  1. ludyja March 31, 2021 at 10:48 am #

    Well, I goofed up – it was Star Trek rather than Star Wars!!


  2. ludyja March 31, 2021 at 9:38 am #

    Bill, I was interested to see the picture of the under-the-sea-at-monterey-bay-aquarium. Did you realize that it is in the Star Wars movie “The Voyage Home?” I had wondered what they had used in the movie. Glad to finally have that information.


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