by Bob Sparrow
Friday – I should be writing this as I’m sitting on the deck of a house overlooking a beautiful lake. Wait a minute, I am sitting on a deck of a house overlooking a beautiful lake, it’s just a different lake. The original plan for the ‘Griswold’s Family Vacation’ was a VRBO overlooking Lake Tahoe, but that was cancelled due to Covid-19. Fortunately, we have friends with a beautiful home locally here on Big Bear Lake and they agreed to us renting it. So, we loaded up the ‘Wagon Queen Family Truckster’ and headed to the mountains last Friday.
By 6:00 p.m. everyone had arrived, Dana, Addison, Mac; Stephanie, Jason, Dylan, Emma; Jeff & Pam – Joe was working at the restaurant and would be coming up on Saturday morning.
The best word to describe our accommodations is SPECTACULAR! Vaulted, open-beam ceilings, a great room upstairs with a stone fireplace, a huge kitchen and a bar. The downstairs game room has a pool table, a Foosball table and another bar – you can never have too many bars. The decks, on both levels, overlook the lake, our private dock and our own sandy beach. The photos don’t do it justice.
Jeff and Pam had ‘dinner duty’ the first night and they treated us with a Thai-chicken dish that they brought back from Thailand, where they honeymooned earlier this year. It was delicious. After dinner it was game time and when the kids went to bed, it was sitting-around-the-bar-time and telling stories time – Stephanie’s stories were particularly hilarious.
Saturday – It’s amazing how long you can just sit on a deck on a cloudless day and watch boats go by –speed boats, pontoon boats, sail boats, Jet Skis, kayaks and paddle boards. I’ll have another beer. – the day just drifted by. Then Joe arrived with preparations for dinner, which took several hours and, of course, was like nothing you’ve ever tasted before, only better. I’ve seen other people take pictures of their dinner and thought that was really stupid, but then, maybe I just never had a reason to take a photo of a meal – until tonight (photo missing). Seasoned flank steak, cooked on the BBQ, then cut into thin slices, BBQ’d vegetables – onions, peppers, squash, asparagus, corn on the cob; garlic toast, and the best of all, a salad with shrimp, avocado, tomato, cucumbers and bacon in the best Louie dressing I’ve ever tasted. Joe does nothing small and nothing not first class; the dinner could have fed 20 easily. After dinner, more cards and dice games with the kids and then when they went to bed, a spirited evening of ‘favorite songs from the past’ with Jeff magically taking on the role of a savant. We weren’t sure what that meant either, but he was very funny!
Sunday – morning fishing on the dock with Joe setting up poles for Addison, Emma and Dylan as they try to catch dinner – looks like lasagna tonight. Mid-day we head into Big Bear City and find it quite bustling, all with masked tourists. We rent a pontoon boat and take a two-hour (5:00 – 7:00) cocktail cruise around the lake. Another beautiful day with nary a cloud. Repeat – dinner and games.
Yes, it’s Monday morning and I’m still here, watching the boats go by – they’re going to have to pry me off this deck with a crowbar! I’ll let you know if anything exciting happens, like a cloud forms or I run out of beer.