My next trip took place during the period - 13-19 February 2001, I traveled via Continental Air to Los Angeles, CA to Bill's condo at Hawaiian Gardens. On the plane I met a young lady from Gulfport, MS., named Gail Dupre, who knew a few people I knew, and I enjoyed her company on the trip.
While in LA, we visited Helen's family, the Hempels. We were dinner guests at her mother's home, and met her brother Paul, and his wife Sandra. Her mother is also named Helen. The dinner was simply wonderful, with "Collotys," for dessert, just like Marie and her mother used to make.
Bill, Helen and I went to BAJA, Mexico, and on the way we visited with one of my 1st cousins, Elma Mae Stillman, at her home, near, Oceanside, CA.
After a short visit with her we were on our way to Enciitas, CA, to visit with cousin Phil Hengen, and his new family, especially his new daughter named Lucille, who was about three years old. While there we went out to lunch and met his newly acquired family. He had recently married a lady who had three children from a former marriage. His first wife, named Lucille, had recently passed away. Phil was Marie's brother John's youngest son.
From Phil's we went on to BAJA, via going through the Customs, at TiJuana, Mexico. We arrived at Newport, and there we found a nice home that belonged to one of Helen's relatives. It was right on the Pacific Ocean, called "The Sea Gull". It was a beautiful place, and was at least two stories high and had a nice view of the whole area. We were met by "Missey" the cat, that was usually there. That evening we went to their favorite restaurant, the Puerto Nuevo 11, in Newport. We met some of Bill's old friends, Mr. and Mrs. Richard Bragg, at dinner. The food was excellent and we enjoyed the fresh lobster, and trimmings, and the "Margaretas", and the Mexican music.
The next day Bill, Helen, and I went shopping for things that they wanted, and then to the leather shops for some things, and then to the "Bazaar Shops", where the native people sell silver jewelry, and many kind of leather, and clothing items. It reminded me of those we saw and went to while on our trip in Egypt. What was really interesting was the bidding that takes place when you buy something. This is because the American dollar is worth ten most of the time in Mexico. Also because most of the people in the booths, are all related, and what one does not have the other can find what you want.
The homes and buildings there are mostly owned by American citizens, and all sort of share in the maintenance of the streets and recreation places.
On our last day there we attended a very nice restaurant called "Calafia", and a sign at the door says "Calafia" means hot, and next that "Fornia" means very hot, and then the word California means "Hotter than Hell." This was a very nice place since it was evidently the largest there and was built on the side of a steep hill, with the Pacific Ocean down about 50 to 100 feet below.
So after having a wonderful time, the next day, we were packed up and heading back to Los Angeles. On the way we had to leave early in the morning, to get through the customs at Tijuana, because of so many people visiting there, and because of a large number went to the USA to work there each day.
After resting a day or so at Bill's condo, he took me to the airport, and I was back in Gulfport, MS. I don't recall who met me there at the airport. After arriving back at my apartment at Hidden Oaks, in Biloxi, I had a day or so of "Jet and Car Lag ." (Smile).