Friday, January 2, 2015

Year in Review...2014

2013 was not a good year for us, another year of declining wages, sickness, and death of loved ones took its toll. 2014 was better but we still lost a couple of people but it wasn't nearly as bad as the year before.

The year started with the culmination of our music cities tour, a great trip to Memphis and Nashville where three sick travelers soldiered on to bring you great sites of musical interest along with meeting musicians Darren Jay, Vince Gill, Ranger Doug Green, Billy Thomas, Sundy Best, Amy Grant, Kenny Sears, and many more.

We wrapped up our series on The Ethnic Foods of the San Gabriel Valley with a visit to historic Santa Anita Racetrack and the 626 Night Market, a stateside version of the night markets of Asia right here in the good 'ole USA.

A few night at the McDowell Mountains Marriott Resort in Scottsdale was just what the doctor ordered to get us over our holiday sickness. Who knew we'd also get up close and personal with a very large wolf on our hike in Papago Park?

After literally hundreds of trips to Newport Beach in my lifetime, who would've thought there'd be a new pocket of the bay I'd never seen? Yet, there it was on Lido Isle.

It's been years since we've been to San Francisco but this year broke the streak as we went to The City and also got Tim his 23rd MLB Stadium as we watched the powerful Oakland A's beat the Tigers just before Billy Beane destroyed the team with his Cespedis-for-Lester trade at the end of July.

It wasn't far from there that we found out that Amador County is the cure for whatever ails us as we spent a few days in the rolling hills of Sierra Foothill wine country and the fabulous Shenandoah Inn in Plymouth, California. This was the trip that I finally tracked down the underground winemaker of the county in our encounter with Fate.

It was back to our favorite off the radar...way off the radar...trip destination, Bakersfield, as we met up with Rockwell and his historic honky tonk as well as making new animal friends at the California Living Museum.

Our farthest trip took us back to the Caribbean and the island of Irie, Jamaica. Great fun, even though the hotel was a little disappointing, but we also got to make new friends and bring Tim up to speed with the same number of countries we've been to.

The fight between the city of Irwindale, California and the Sriracha hot sauce factory gave us a great opportunity as owner David Tran opened up the doors to all comers to see exactly how the tasty, spicy condiment is made.  It's Southern California's hottest new attraction.

The Festival in San Pedro brought us in close contact with brewers from all over the world in November.

Looming retirement had us on the road to Northern Nevada and Reno before we hung up our traveling shoes for the year.

If we were to pick our favorite highlights, Amador County would be at the top of my list, followed by the music cities of Tennessee, then Jamaica. We'll start the new year soon by following in the path of one of the most infamous tragedies of early California before going to an undiscovered gem in Mexico's Baja peninsula.

For now, thanks for your support and following and Happy New Year from The World on Wheels!

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