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Friday, May 28, 1999

I woke up refreshed this morning. I was going to take local buses all the way to Torrance. After a light breakfast I walked over to the beach to watch the surfers pulling on their wet suits in the chill of the morning. It's only 7:00 AM and they are already heading out. I headed out to the transit station to wait for the #301 bus. I took it to Oceanside where I waited for the #305 bus which goes through Camp Pendelton to San Clemente.

There were several other people waiting. Some were going to San Clemente and others to the camp. A few looked like they had had a partying night. It's a great drive as we go through relatively empty country with rolling hills and plenty of vegetation. There's nothing like having the military in charge to keep a place untouched.

It's quite a winding drive as we stop at various areas to let people off and on. The drive takes a little over an hour and when we get to San Clemente the OCTA (Orange County Transit Authority) #91 was waiting. The stop is at a Burger King and I run in to use the bathroom and grab some coffee. The bus goes along the coast and through some residential areas. The driver is very friendly and seems to know many of the passengers.

I get off at a K Mart in San Capistrano and wait for the #1 bus which follows CA-1 up the coast up to Long Beach. This is a long two hour ride. I'm told that this bus can be standing room only in good weather as people use it to get to the beaches. The weather is cool but I bet that tomorrow which is the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend it will be full.

I get off at the VA Medical Center and get on the Long Beach Transit bus #171 to downtown Long Beach. We're out of the yuppie beach areas now and getting into the older working town areas. Everything is older and shabbier. It's nice to see after all the beach towns. Long Beach is a beach town too, but it's an industrial and shipping beach town.

At the Long Beach transit center the Torrance bus is waiting. There's a little fair going on and I'd like to stay but it's already been nearly five hours. I take the Torrance #3 bus to the Del Amo transit center where I need to catch the #8 bus to my son's home. Torrance is a working class town also but it's moving up as people can buy houses here cheaper than other places such as Redondo Beach, which is right next door.

There are quite a few people waiting, some who have been waiting nearly an hour. It seems that Torrance does not like hiring extra drivers, so if a driver doesn't show up, like today, there's no one to run their route. Nice! One lady is totally pissed as she needs to pick her kids up at school and is already on her cell phone trying to find someone to complain to.

The next bus comes soon after I get there and a bunch of disgruntled people get on. It's a couple miles up to where I get off. I walk a couple of blocks (love the suitcase with wheels) and I'm finally there. It's so nice to see my daughter-in-law.

We go on a walk at Redondo Beach till my son get's home. It's good to stretch my legs and the cool air feels good. It's also great to see my son. It's been a long and tiring day, but lot's of fun. I've seen so many little towns and enjoyed myself thoroughly.

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Walked - 4 miles

Rachel Aschmann 1999.
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