Monthly Archives: April 2019

Cars and Boys in Steve’s Office – Mon. April 29, 2019

Steve sent these pictures of some new cars that were on display today at his office at Hagerty Insurance in Traverse City, MI.

Beautiful all Shiny and Black CCX.

Vector W8
I googled Vector W8 and this is what I found:
The Vector W8 is sports car produced by American automobile manufacturer Vector Aeromotive Corporation from 1989 to 1993. It was designed by company founder and chief designer Gerald Wiegert while receiving refinements by Vector’s head of engineering David Kostka.

Wikipedia says: The Koenigsegg CCX is a mid-engine sports car manufactured by Swedish automotive manufacturer Koenigsegg Automotive AB.The project began with the aim of making a global car, designed and engineered to comply with global safety and environment regulations, particularly to enter the United States car market.
And my favorite picture:

Paco and Tommy and a McClaren Senna.
The McLaren Senna is a limited-production mid-engine sports car manufactured by McLaren Automotive. The car is the third addition in the McLaren Ultimate Series, joining the F1 and the P1; however, it is not a direct successor to either of the cars. The Senna was unveiled online by the company on December 10, 2017,[7] with the official unveiling taking place at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show.

I wonder if Paco and Tommy will know anything about collectible cars??


A tired tourist in Venice

Our bridge friend, Dave Vidaver, has been traveling in Italy for the past couple of weeks.
This afternoon he sent this picture:

Dave V. – a tired tourist in Venice.

Earlier Dave sent these photos of what he calls the Itlalian equivalent of Starbucks:

Look at that Ceiling!

$5.75 for 9 oz pour of wine and all the bar food you can eat.

Starbucks equivalent??

The Italians do know how to eat!!


Tommy in Chilly Soccer Match – Sat. April 27, 2019

Kirsten sent these photos this morning of Tommy playing in a soccer match in near freezing temperatures in Traverse City, MI.

And I am complaining about trying to do yard work at 6pm when the temperature is 89 degrees here in Sacramento.

Tommy seems to be aggessively pursing the ball.

Tommy is #12 on the left. Nice wooded background.

Tommy, #12, is in front of the right post.

Tommy and a taller teammate are competing to kick the ball.

Tommy is leading the pack. Note the green shoelaces.

It is so nice to see Tommy enjoying a team sport.


Lunch at North Ridge – Sat. April 27, 2019

Yesterday our former social bridge group met at North Ridge CC for lunch, thanks to Mary Claire O’Connor’s invitation.

We celebrated 3 birthdays: Mary Claire’s was last Saturday, Kathy Cunningham’s will be next Thursday, and Barbara Goyette’s will be the following Monday.

Standing are: Donna Logsdon, Barbara Wheeler, Sue Mecum, and Mary Ann Stewart.
Seated: Mary Claire O’Connor, Kathy Cunningham, and Barbara Goyette.

I brought a tiramisu from Bella Bru Bakery and had #81, #84, and #85 candles arranged around the cake. Each birthday girl took a turn at blowing out the candles representing her age, without blowing out the other candles.

Thanks to our accommodating waiter who took the photo and bundles up take home boxes for the left over cake.

Barbara Wheeler

Tommy is Playing Soccer – Sun. April 21, 2019

Kirsten sent 2 pictures this morning of Tommy playing soccer. She wrote:
“Here are some shots from T’s first soccer game yesterday. Unfortunately, Team Albania beat Team Chilé. Tomás had fun and did not get hit in the face like he did during his first foray into fútbol a couple of years ago. Don’t let the blue skies fool you. It was only 45 and Tomás #12 reluctantly wore the Argentina blue long sleeve undershirt. Paco’s planned away game in Midland (crook of thumb and forefinger of the ✋🏻) was cancelled due to rain or poor field conditions as were two games last week.”

Tommy on the right in the long sleeve T-shirt underneath his soccer shirt.

Tommy kicking left-footed!

Happy Easter to all.


Clark’s Connection to the Squaw Valley Tram – Sun. April 14, 2019

When Clark saw the picture of my niece Janet Keeter skiing at Squaw Valley in yesterday’s blog, he realized it was 50 years ago this past December that he was involved in approving the safety of the Squaw Valley tram for public use.

The Tram at Squaw Valley: The newly installed Tram goes up the mountain for a trial run prior to the Grand Opening Dec. 18, 1968..

Clark worked as a civil engineer for California State Parks and Recreation. He wrote Janet the following:

“In December of 1968 I was part of a group of three Government employees assigned to approve the new gondola Lift at Squaw Valley (largest in the world at that time). I had approved some of the smaller lifts previously with an engineer from the California Department of Forestry.

I was given the plans about three days before the inspection and approval. I remember that they were in German. We checked the Gondola breaking ability empty and full, substituting barrels of sand for people. There were three braking systems and we would eliminate first one and then two to see if the third one worked. We took turns in the Gondola when it went up and down the mountain so as to share the risk.

In my typical fashion I asked which of the three of us really had the authority for final approval? Their decision was that it was I because the tram was on State Park Land.

There was a lot of pressure because Opening Day’s events had already been scheduled for just a few days away. If I remember correctly, there may have been some elephants involved. I think we worked with a man name Hans (Burkhart) who was in charge of the construction.

I finally agreed to the approval of the big lift, but there was a small backup little Gondola that was to be used to rescue people if the big Gondola had problems. The Squaw Valley people did not think that my scope included the rescue gondola. I think the smaller rescue gondola could carry ten or so people and the main lift about fifty to one hundred?) people. The full rescue would take five to ten trips.

I made them run tests on the small rescue gondola, but if there had been a problem during the test, it would have stopped the scheduled opening day. The cables could flip or something else bad could happen. I finally approved the smaller rescue vehicle and everybody was happy.

They did have some problems with wind about ten years later. I think some people were killed? I would have been a poor witness with little or no real understanding of Gondola design and construction. I think the Gondola tram may have been the biggest something lift in the USA at that time.

Sometimes you get lucky. Do you think I should have refused the assignment? There was a lot of pressure on me because of the negative public reaction if there were delays or problems. For all I know someone from the Governor’s office may have been pressuring the Department of Parks and Recreation.

If something had happened, they would need a scape goat and you can guess who that would have been. You see scape goating all the time. Matt Davis or Jim Canty, would you have defended me?”

Here is a link to the 50th anniversary celebration:
Tram Celebrates 50th Anniversary | The Squaw Valley Times


Tram Celebrates 50th Anniversary | The Squaw Valley Times

Janet skiing at Squaw – Sat. April 13, 2019

My niece, Janet Smith Keeter, posted this gorgeous picture on Facebook today.

Janet Smith Keeter Spring Skiing at Squaw on a Retro Ski Weekend.

Paco and Tommy … the is what Spring looks like in some places in California. Janet is the aunt of your cousins Kayla and Alyssa.