Yesterday Jerry and I celebrated our 36th wedding anniversary. We married on August 1, 1975 in Orange County, California and lived there, except for 22 months in Turkey, until we retired in June of 2000, at which time we relocated to the "Inland Empire." We decided that a fitting celebration this year would be repeating one of our favorite things to do on a summer evening in the OC. This included eating our dinner at our favorite local deli in Santa Ana, driving down to Newport and walking out on the Balboa Pier, eating a frozen banana, looking at the lovely views, and then heading home, happy and content.
We started off at Benjies, the best Jewish deli in Orange County. Our repast included matzoh ball soup, potato latkes, and a plate of chopped liver, egg salad and potato salad, accompanied by genuine Jewish Rye bread! There are no comparable delis within driving range of where we live, so when we dine at Benjies it is like being in heaven.
Next we drove down to Balboa, parked the car at the foot of the pier, and headed out to see if the fish were biting. The air was fresh and clear as a bell, the evening warm with a slight breeze. Jerry led the way.
The fish were, in fact, biting. Since we aren't fishermen, we can't tell you what was being caught, but all up and down the pier I, being a tinch squeamish when it comes to caught-fish and cut up bait, simply had to keep my eyes focused straight ahead, because there was a lot of flopping going on around the pier edges!
There's a cute little restaurant called Ruby's at the end of the pier, and if we hadn't just had our Benjies meal, we wouldn't have been able to resist the wonderful smell of fried fish and chips!
The frozen bananas used to cost $1.25 but now were up to $3.25. Nevertheless, we didn't let price stop us. The bananas were huge, covered with chocolate and nuts, and totally wonderful. I took my own picture while I was eating mine, and while it isn't all that flattering, it will certainly show you what we have been missing all these retirement years!
After finishing our special treat, we took a walk along the Balboa bay. I grew up going to the beach at Balboa, lying on the sand at this very location. But now, it is a private beach, set aside for owners (or renters) of houses that line the bay side of Balboa. But what a view those people have.
We finished off the evening by walking back to the pier, retrieving our car, and taking a picture of the sunset as we called it a day.
The "going home from work" traffic was off the freeway by the time we got on it, and in an hour we were pulling up to our snug little apartment in the IE. It was a wonderful celebration!