There were over a 130 Loreto Bay homeowners in town during the holidays. Many of the homes were occupied and poolside at the INN was full with families braving the wind to get some sunshine. It was great to see new neighbors and everyone was making friends. There were impromptu parties daily and everyone was always welcome because if you did not know the host, it was an opportunity to meet a new friend. The general comment was “Everyone is so nice!”
The first party was held by Peter and Shauna at FN136. I arrived late but there were still copious amounts of wine to be consumed. I was told there were a hundred people coming and going over the duration of the 4 hour afternoon party. Word about the open house spread like wildfire in less than the 24 hours prior that they planned it and this set the tone for the entire week. Great People, Great Party!
Richard and Lindsay, FN51, decided they were having so much fun at Peter and Shauna’s that they decided to have a continuation party the next day. So we all spread the word to anyone and everyone that “There’s a party at 51 from 3 to 6 pm”. That’s all it took to get a great gathering of delicious pot luck dishes from sushi rice, cabbage rolls, pasta, and of course cheese & crackers, guacamole and chips, cookies, fudge … a true party feast.
Christmas Eve night was spent with my Victoria friends, John Newton and his kids Taylor and Tracey, and my casa partners Carver & Marian who live in Toronto. New York steaks in Hunter sauce with fresh mixed salad and assorted vegetables was the menu. Yummy!! A quiet evening without decorated tree, gift exchange, or stockings hung by the chimney, were just fine by us.
Christmas Day I spent wandering around Loreto Bay like the ghost of Christmas Present spreading good cheer and wishes to all my friends. It was bright and sunny and the beach is a perfect backdrop for goodwill to all men. Being on the beach with brothers Charlie & Brian of FN332 is now becoming a Christmas tradition as this is our second year in the row to drink, laugh and be merry on this special day.
Darryl Jones was making his special Deep Fried Turkey for many of us who had never seen or tried such a thing. There is something very sexy about a man who knows his way around the kitchen! It was a treat to watch him prepare the bird, while I sipped wine, nibbled on the ceviche he had made and just watched. No cooking for me this year!
Bill and Laurie Doyle of TCC Loreto Construction Coach hosted Christmas dinner and put on a beautiful table with handcut crystal and all the trimmings, including real stuffing with Italian sausage. Laurie is a great cook and we laughed, drank and ate for hours. It doesn’t get much better in Loreto or anywhere than to be among friends.
Ross and Lorna Weppler of FN182 followed new tradition and had an open house at their home as well. I was there with at least 50 people and looking around it was unusual that all were Canadian. Brian and Jo Lithgow were the only Americans and they felt right at home saying “eh!” It was terrific to see another group of neighbors mingling and mixing as though they had known each other for years. Some people bought in Cluster 6 in February 2004 and are only now getting their homes. They are happy and they feel it is worth the wait!
The INN at Loreto Bay hosted a cocktail hour for homeowners on Friday night by the pool. There were approximately 150 people in attendance. It was a great time and the margaritas flowed as usual at Poolside. It was a wonderful party and we all thank the INN at Loreto Bay for their generosity. We were all surprised that they closed the bar after 2 hours, as it would have been great to have a No Host bar after the complimentary drinks so that we could support the INN and continue the party all night long. With reasonably priced drinks, simple food, and our great growing community, it is a recipe for a successful party every time.
The holidays would not be complete without a trip up to San Javier Mission on a beautiful quiet Sunday morning to pay our respects and say a little a prayer. John and I started the day by having a delicious full breakfast at Del Borracho and a leisurely drive up to the Mission. The mountains were covered with green and as we slowly made our way up the 32 km, the diversity in topography, vegetation, and views was breathtaking. It took us 1.5 hours to get there because I made John stop every few minutes so I could get photos. On the way back it was much faster of course and we went along the dry river bed road and imagined the ranging waters going through during the tropical storms.
As 2007 comes to an end, I can say that my life is full of friends, opportunities, and good experiences. It has been a fast and difficult year, filled with complexities, challenges, and self doubt, but I am not alone and that makes all the difference. I have lived fully, in the moment, and tread lightly. What is my resolution for next year? To be kinder to myself, seek balance, and continue to make a difference when and where I can. I leave you with this wish until we see you again in Loreto!
May peace break into your house and may thieves come to steal your debts.
May the pockets of your jeans become a magnet of $100 bills.
May love stick to your face like Vaseline and may laughter assault your lips!
May your clothes smell of success like smoking tires!
May happiness slap you across the face and may your tears be that of joy.
May the problems you had forget your home address! In simple words ........... May 2008 be the best year of your life!