Friday, July 06, 2012

Three-Point Turn

Three-point turn.
We arrived at my parent's home in Reno on the third of July. The weather is much warmer here in the high Sierra Nevada desert, and we were happy to unpack our suitcases, wash our clothes and sleep in familiar beds for a change. It's nice to be resting instead of traveling for a while, too, although we have made a number of short day trips since we have been here, so we haven't really been resting.

On the fourth of July, grandma and grandpa took us to the National Automobile Museum. I'm not much of a car aficionado, but it was neat to see all of the old cars and car paraphernalia. We were really taking Vito who loved every minute of it. There were even cars formerly owned by Elvis Presley and John F. Kennedy on display. With Angela's help, I discovered that there were a also few Italian cars in the collection: a 1955 Ferrari Type 625 Grand Prix car and a 1961 Fiat "Y." The cars on display dated back to the end of the 1800s and continued to the modern day. Interestingly, to round out the tour, there was an additional display that included numerous photographs and "art" cars from the famous Burning Man festival.

After eating dinner, we went to Sparks to watch fireworks that were going to be launched from the roof of the John Ascuaga's Nugget Hotel and Casino. Unfortunately, they were delayed for almost one hour due to windy conditions, but we were finally rewarded for waiting.

Mattux and Vito locked in a Wii duel.
On the fifth, we just stayed around the house. It's nice to sit outside in the early evening when it is starting to cool down, look at the brown hills at the bottom of the Sierra Nevada Mountains clustered with sagebrush as the grey shadows stretch across them, and listen to the birds chirp and the wind sigh through the scattered pines. My brother Todd and his family arrived from Colorado around noon, so Vito has someone to play withhis cousin Mattux! They haven't seen each other in about three years, but they quickly reacquainted themselves with each other. We stepped out and took the kids swimming at the clubhouse for a little while in the afternoon, but other than that, we didn't venture too far afield.

On the sixth, after everyone woke up, we went to visit the Nevada State Railroad Museum in Carson City and then drove up to Virginia City. It was hot, but not terribly. Viginia City, famous for its mining history, has some notable Mark Twain lore, as well. After eating lunch, we walked through the old schoolhouse, watched a comedy gunfight and took a ride on an old train pulled by a steam engine. Everyone was exhausted by the end of that adventure.

Vito in the cockpit at the Truckee Air Show.
Yesterday, all of us caravanned to the Trukee Air Show in the morning, and then tried to eat lunch near Lake Tahoe, but it was just too crowded. The roadsides were crawling with bicyclists, the Trukee River was choked with rafters, and traffic was unbearably heavy. We ordered sandwiches at a local supermarket, were chased by the camp host out of the campground in which we were eating because we hadn't reserved the campsite, and finished near the river in Verdi on our way home where the kids got to also play in the water. In the evening, my brother and his wife and me and Angela booked rooms at the Sands Regency Hotel and Casino, left the kids at home with grandma and grandpa, and went out for a night in the biggest little city in the world. We walked along the river, ate a nice meal together, tossed back a few pints, gambled a littbitle, and generally caroused until the early morn.

Today, my mom's parents, my Aunt Sue, my cousin Katie and her two kids, Grant and Emily, and some friends of my parents (Steve and Sharon, and Amy and Lou) came over for lunch. We had a nice visit with family and made some new friends. Everyone is resting now.