With the exception of two years, I have always spent the 4th of July with my family. The two years that I skipped out, were due to having to work, the only acceptable excuse for missing my Aunt and Uncle's annual pool party. It used to be a big deal, between 30-40 people, BBQ, pool volleyball and fireworks. The party has dwindled over the years and is now more of a small gathering rather than a party. Still, attendance on my part was considered mandatory, I've never enjoyed it. I love the people who come, but a whole day of sitting around the pool, helping out and making small talk is just not my idea of a fun way to spend the 4th. Additionally, the mandatory attendance just irks me. Somehow, the 4th has been elevated to a family holiday, near to the same level as Thanksgiving or Christmas. This year, I decided to make a stand. It resulted in a bit of family drama and a fight, but I just wasn't going to do the normal 4th of July routine. I asserted my independence. This refusal led to a day without plans and an adventure!
For as long as I have known him, Dan has been wanting to drive up route two and into Angeles National Park. Growing up in Glendale, the Angeles Forrest is in my backyard, but I had never explored it. We fueled up on pancakes and hit the road with no particular destination in mind.
Here is one of our Smart Cars on Angeles Crest Highway. Zippy and a convertible, a perfect partner on our expedition.
Beautiful winding roads and nearly empty of other drivers, we decided to head up to Mount WIlson. Growing up in Southern California, I heard mention of Mount Wilson constantly on the news. The "Mount Wilson Cam" is always talked about with the weather reports. However, Mount Wilson was a vague concept, because I never knew or bothered to find out where it was located. Let me tell you that is was worth the drive.
Look what we saw at the top of Mount Wilson
And beautiful wildflowers at the head of a hiking trail. Next time we will come prepared to go on a hike.
Lastly, a memorial marker that has a bit of a tie in to the 4th of July with the D.A.R.. Speaking of which, I remember as a child that my mom was thinking of joining the D.A.R., which thinking back now, just seems odd.
After our driving adventure, we ended up having our own Hot Dog eating contest on the patio and washing it down with bucket loads of wine. The best 4th of July ever! ( Dan even said so and he naturally makes a point NOT to celebrate the day)