I’m back in Philadelphia this morning after 12 days in California. I’m also coming back with a new appreciation for the Golden State after driving back and forth from San Francisco to San Diego, first south along the Pacific Coast Highway, then back north along I-5 through the mountains and then fertile farming plains.

I spend this past low-key weekend with friends in San Francisco, enjoying their company and enjoying a Saturday walk from Haight-Ashbury through Golden Gate Park, past sights like the Rhododendron Dell and American Bison Paddock to the Pacific Ocean where we had beer at the Beach Front Chalet where American Indians in tiled mosaic still threatened with taught bows as the waves crashed down outside, oblivious to time. It was a nice Saturday.

Yesterday was spent largely at the Presidio, specifically the Walt Disney Family Museum cafe where I caught up on action items with Chris Buchignani for The Nittany Valley Society, and took care of end-of-week housekeeping-type stuff. Dinner, night Mass, then back to SFO for my flight here.

This is one of those moments in life where appreciation comes viscerally and freely. It’s a wonderful world.