Saturday, October 16, 2010


October 15 - On Friday morning, a group of us from TT Wilderness Lakes drove over to the Diamond Valley Lake Recreation Center in Hemet to play again. We recognized some of the same group that was there last Sunday, and there were some new players as well.

We met Ruth and her husband Cliff; really good players (previous tennis players). They live nearby and actually have a Pickleball court in their back yard. Problem was, they didn’t have anyone to play with. Then they discovered the group playing at Diamond Valley Lake Rec.

Ken with Ruth

Chuck was here last Sunday. Shirley is a new player.

Mike drove over from Wilderness Lakes. This is one of the first games of Pickleball that Roger has ever played!

Ruth and Chuck.

Carolyn and Mike, our friends from Thousand Trails.

Paul and Shirley.

There is a particular group of four players that have a challenge going all the time. They have only been playing Pickleball for a short time but they play really hard – a bit unorthodox, but really competitive!! I think they have found a new field of battle!! I overheard one of them talking to Paul about Pickleball. He was so earnest when he asked Paul, “Did you ever see the movie Cocoon? It’s where these old people who are all worn out go into a cocoon and they are all rejuvenated! Well, this is like our Cocoon!! We’ve been rejuvenated!!” I thought his analogy was so profound I had to share it. It is true!! Pickleball does change your life!!

Here are the Young Guns!! Ron, I’m sorry I don’t know the name of the second player but I know he is Colleen's Son, Pri, and Dave.

Pri and Ron

Take on Colleen's Son and Dave.

Hey Dave – the net is the other way!!

Ken and Carolyn had to put up a big fight to get Ron and Pri to split after they had won their previous game because they only want to play together! Reluctantly, they finally agreed to split!!

Ron and Ken

Took on Carolyn and Pri

Chuck and Faye

Carolyn and Mike

Our group from Wilderness Lakes!! Mike, Ken, Faye, Carolyn. (Paul left before the picture was taken.)


October 14 – I have had this recipe for Translucent Salmon forever!! Tonight I decided it was time to use some of our Sockeye from Oregon and prepared this unusual dish.

The Salmon is actually “cooked” in a marinade of Vodka, Oil, and Lemon Juice. Then thin slices are wrapped around Asparagus spears and garnished with onion and a few jalapeno peppers.

In my version, the Salmon was too thick to wrap so I simply placed it across the Asparagus. I added Capers and a dollop of Horseradish Sauce.

It literally melted in our mouths!! UUMMMM!!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010


October 12 – Tuesday afternoon we drove from TT Wilderness Lakes to see Niki in Culver City, CA where she lives and works. We wanted to allow plenty of time for traffic, but there was not much traffic going west (a lot going East). We arrived in Culver City early enough to drive over to Marina Del Rey. That was a waste of time -- got this glimpse of the beach!!

Then we met Niki at ZOIC Studios where she works as an VFX Coordinator for feature films, etc.

ZOIC seems to be a great place to work. Modern d├ęcor – Niki calls it “Industrial”. This is one way to get upstairs. The area in the far right edge is where they eat. The Studio provides breakfast, lunch, and dinner every day.

Niki at her work station.

Niki’s co-workers greeted us warmly and enthusiastically welcomed us to the Studios. They all had high praise for Niki and the job she is doing for them!! That was good to hear.

Here are the guys who do the Commercials. I saw all of these good looking young hunks together in a cubicle and just HAD to get a picture!!

Niki and her Producer.

With her Co-Coordinator.

Here is Ken with John Hamm, Mad Men!!

After a tour of the Studio, we went to the home that Niki shares with three other young women. A couple of her roommates were there.

Niki with her puppy, Oliver!

Niki’s friend Maxx came over to meet us. What a nice young man and good looking, too! He works at another Studio and also for Sony.

Then we all went out to Mexican dinner in downtown Culver City.

It was fun seeing where Niki works and meeting her roomies and friends!! She said her mother was going to be jealous because we got to do it all before she could!! HA HA Vickie!!

Sunday, October 10, 2010


October 10 – We are really enjoying ourselves again at Wilderness Lakes!! We have run into some Pickleball players here. While there are not many there are enough for an enjoyable morning of play!! They begin playing at 8 AM!! A little early for us, but we are trying.

Some of the players we already know from years past. And we’ve met some new friends on the courts.

Al and Ken. Al is the Ranger who met us when we came into the Preserve. We have known him for years.

Anthony and Edie. Edie lives in the surrounding area and comes over to play. We have known her for years from playing here at Wilderness Lakes. Anthony is a relatively new player but he’s a good player and really loves the game!!

Good game guys!! It’s great to be back!!

(I snuck in for the next picture!!)

Carolyn and Junior. Carolyn is our friend from years ago who came into the park the same day we did. Junior is a new, young player.

Paul and Ken. We met Paul a few years ago in Florida!! Great to see one of the East Coast people out here!!

Faye and Ken.

Faye and Paul. I think I missed another shot!! Amazing!! I think I got it!!!

Something new in Hemet!! When we were last here in March 2006, the nearby town of Hemet was in the process of expanding the area around Diamond Valley Lake. Well, now we do not even recognize the place. For one thing, there is a new Parkway leading from just outside of Wilderness Lakes to the Diamond Valley Recreation Center 10 miles away. Several of the Pickleball players from Wilderness Lakes (Al, Edie and Anthony) go over to the Recreation Center to play Pickleball on Friday and Sunday mornings because a group from Hemet play regularly at that time. We joined them this past Sunday.

Here is the group that was there on Sunday with a few action shots. We could tell right away they really enjoy the game and are having a lot of fun playing. We were told that two years ago they had this beautiful facility with two new Pickleball courts but no one played. Then last year Pickleball was introduced into the Hemet Senior Games and locals began to play. Now they have this really fun group of players that get together every Friday and Sunday morning.
With Ken -

And again with me! (See - they didn't even mind having their pictures taken!!)

Anthony playing one of the young locals.
Edie held her own with the young guns!!

Some of you may recognize the silver paddle being used by Ken’s partner, Ron!! I had not seen Ron’s paddle when another player asked me where I had gotten my paddle because he wanted to get one himself. He thought it was like Ron’s who had a friend order the paddle for him from the internet. I told him that mine was made by our friend, Spike who makes the paddles himself. I offered to give him Spike’s number. When I started giving him the digits, he said it was the same number he had gotten from Ron!! I thought that was really neat!!! Someone with no connection to Happy Trails AZ, Thousand Trails, or Spike, was playing with one of Spike's paddles!! Hope we will be running into Spike and Linda sometime this winter!!

It was a fun Sunday morning. We will probably go again on Friday morning!!