Thursday, October 16, 2008

Family Visits, Travels and The News

Family Visits and Travels
I wonder, has anyone missed my posts on here? For the last couple of weeks I was busy with family. My brother, Ted, flew out from Virginia two weeks ago today and we had a grand time visiting and traveling and visiting some more until he left this past Monday. The day after he arrived, we headed up to Oregon for a visit with my Dad and Stepmom. We got an early start, he picked me up while it was still dark and then we picked up my other brother Gene and headed up the highway. As you can see from the photo below, we saw the sun rise over the Sutter Buttes as we drove up the highway towards Oregon. The clouds and such made for a nice photo of the buttes in the distance.
My brothers and I were having a lot of fun talking and getting "caught up" as we went up I5. A few miles up the road, Ted made a comment about seeing flashing lights periodically in the rear view mirror for the last few miles. There was a big-rig traveling along in the fast lane with the flashing lights peeking out on one side or the other. So Ted moved us into the slow lane and the big-rig caught up to us pretty fast with a Highway Patrolman right on his tail with lights and siren going. Now we were doing about 75 or so and this truck passed us by like we were almost standing still! Then, up ahead we could see another Highway Patrol car coming down an onramp with his lights flashing, and I suppose his siren was going as well. The truck driver "gave up" and pulled over to the slow lane and then onto the shoulder. The two patrol cars didn't stop behind him, they pulled clear off the road and onto the dirt alongside the truck even with the cab of the truck. We just kept going and have no idea what the outcome of that trucker's fate, but it made for some "interesting" comments between the three of us for a while. Ted is a trucker on the east coast, owning and operating his own rig, and me being a former trucker a few years back, we had a few ideas on what might have happened to the driver. For one, the speed limit for trucks in California is 55mph. That guy had to be doing 80-85mph and that is considered "reckless driving" for a truck. We speculated that the guy might have gotten a ride in the back seat of one of the patrol cars and the rig got towed until he managed to get his "ticket". For another thing, Ted was seeing those lights flashing behind that truck for at least 10 miles or so. What charges would the Highway Patrol tack on for that? Oh well, that trucker at the very least got a really steep fine and I'll bet he stays out of California for a while.

Remember the photos I posted last month of Mount Shasta with no snow on the top? Well, we had a weather change for a few days while Ted was here. We couldn't even see the top of Shasta as we drove to Oregon this time! The clouds were completely covering the summit.
I'll add a picture from the trip home a few days later so you can see Mount Shasta with snow on the top again. The snow was "thin", but it looked more like the Mount Shasta we normally see instead of the bare, dry mountain we saw last month.
Anyway, we had a great time up at my Dad's. Our step-sister came down from Vancouver, Washington and the four of us along with my Dad and Step-mom had a lot of fun reminiscing and getting caught up. It rained for most of the visit, but that didn't matter, we spent most of the time sitting around the kitchen table talking, drinking coffee and playing dominoes or cards.

After coming home on Monday, we had a day to unpack and rest up, then on Wednesday my Mom, Step-Dad, brother and I went over to the Coast Guard Station at Petaluma for a couple days. We took a couple scenic drives, one over on the coast (With a stop at Bodega Bay to get some souvenirs that had references to the Alfred Hitchcock movie "The Birds" for Ted to take home to Virginia.) and then on our way back home the next day, we took a back roads route to Clear Lake just for the scenery.

Hmm.. I guess I should shut up about the travels and the family visit for now, huh? Anyway, Ted flew home to Virginia on Monday and the rest of us went back to our "normal" lives. Maybe I'll post more about some of the other stuff that we did during Ted's visit this year. Maybe I'll post another day about the old photos that my brothers and I sorted through. Maybe I'll post another day about the family tree information that I have borrowed from my Step-mom that shows that a couple of our ancestors came over on the Mayflower. Maybe.

The News
Since it's been all over the news the past few days, I am guessing that most everyone reading this blog knows that Casey Anthony was indicted for 1st degree murder among other things on Tuesday. She was arrested after some hinky car switching by her from her mother, Cindy's car to a bail bondsman's car under an over pass (What was up with that stunt? Were they trying to be sneaky or what?) and now sits in a jail cell with no bond. No more revolving door at the jail for Casey. And she still won't give up any truthful information about the whereabouts of her daughter, Caylee. All we get from her, her family or the lawyers is that we will all "understand" her actions once the truth is told at trial.

Hey, Casey? Why wait for the trial if you are so "innocent"? If what you did with that child is so "understandable", why wait? Tell the truth now and let that poor child be found! Casey's family and her lawyer are still saying that Caylee is alive out there somewhere. My question to them is "Who was the dead body in the trunk of Casey's car if it wasn't Caylee?" How can anyone understand the lies and mistruths that have come from Casey and her family? How can leading the investigators on a wild goose chase be "understood"? How can staying silent about a missing child for 31 days and going out partying and shopping be "understood"?

And Mr. Baez. Hmm.. What can I say about him? Well, from what I am hearing and reading on the news, Mr. Baez isn't qualified to defend a 1st degree murder case. He hasn't been practicing long enough and has never even sat second-chair on a murder case. Who is going to be first-chair for Casey's defense when this comes to trial? And I have no doubts, Casey will be sitting in a courtroom defending her actions even if somehow a miracle happens and Caylee does come home alive. There are still the financial charges, the child neglect charges and the charges of her lying to the investigators. They can't dispute the financial charges, the checks with the forged signatures are there, the store and bank videos are there showing Casey spending the money she stole from her former friend Amy. The child neglect charges will also be hard for them to defend against as well. Didn't Casey keep her daughter's disappearance secret for 31 days before her mother, Cindy, caught on and called 911?

Geez.. I have so many questions I would like to ask Casey, Cindy, George and Lee and I know that I'll never get answers to a lot of them. Right now, my big question is how the heck they think I am going to "understand" what Casey did. I can't think of a single scenario that would make me or any of my children hide the truth of a 3 year old child's disappearance. Not for 31 days. Not even for one day.