The weather was perfect with highs in the low seventies, clear skies and just a slight onshore breeze. Not bad for November! Conditions could not be any better. The island is one of John's and Laureen's favorite haunts - an intimate setting with shops, restaurants and plenty of rental houses available surrounded by the gorgeous waters of Newport Bay. An ideal place to get away for a short period from the everyday hustle and bustle of life.
After a quick but delicious bite of late breakfast - John and Laureen walked hand-in-hand through the quiet streets of Balboa Island, enjoying the beautiful surroundings. That was until they reached the museum. It had a 'closed for remodeling' sign plastered to the front glass door.
"What?" John asked. "The internet said it was open."
|Hmm, what was the question?|
"It's supposed to be open," John repeated, stunned.
Laureen nodded her head in sympathetic understanding of her husband's confusion. She can be very patient at times like these.
"Sometimes the internet is not correct. No worries, what's your plan 'B'?"
Silence hung in the air like water droplets on the top of a sunroof.
"I don't have a plan 'B'."
Of course, Laureen thought John was joking since a plan 'B' for any outings is a must to ensure a travel isn't ruined by unexpected consequences - like a museum that was supposed to be open and not being. J and L always have a Plan B, and often a Plan C or D, etc..
"Really?" Laureen asked.
"Yep, really," John replied.
"You're not joking? You don't have a Plan B? Well, let's find one."
When in doubt, ask Mr. Google, as our good friend Paul Bakas always says. We did and the rest of the day was nothing but adventure and exploration.
An hour among the flora and fauna made us head indoors to the Peter and Mary Muth Interpretive Center. The center was fabulous with interactive dioramas, question and answer boards about the coastline, massive fish tanks with rays and sharks, sea worm tunnels, and an assortment of other activities to keep both children and adults busy researching for hours.
It was well worth the visit and made a great Plan B. But we were not done yet.
A short drive to Balboa Peninsula brought to mind the idea of enjoying the afternoon by simply walking along the sandy beach and peering out into the vastness of the Pacific Ocean. Enjoying each other's company and then a splendid dinner.
That changed when a six foot poster near the parking area revealed a sale on whale watching by Davey's Locker located near the ferry on the peninsula. Sixteen bucks for a two and half hour boating adventure could not be ignored. More than half price off - Laureen and John jumped at the chance. No whales on our whale watch tour, but we did enjoy the pleasure of the company of perhaps two dozen so-called common dolphin. They stayed and played near our boat for nearly thirty minutes, using using the wake of the vessel to aide in chasing their food source. And, showing off a little for their human audience. Laureen took exception to the guide referring to them as common, as she found their sleek, rapid spinning movements to be anything but common. She is a sensitive soul when it comes to feelings, human or non-human. For me, they were indeed a sight to behold.
As the newspaper editor, Tess Flanders, once wrote in 1911 - "One picture is worth a thousand words." Well, how about a few photographs?
When going out to explore your backyard, community, county, state, or wherever the mood drives a persons there must always be a Plan B. If there isn't one, make sure to research if something goes awry like a museum being closed for repairs. The day then is not ruined but only momentarily paused and that is perfectly fine - Plan B may turn out to be better than the original idea in the first place.
For further information when visiting Newport Beach, California