So, Friday I had the chance to do a couple of quick loads of laundry (ok, really, just one. The days of separating laundry by color is long gone. The only real “white” whites I have are Russ’s socks, which are always inside boots and therefore can be “lazy wife gray”!) Russ worked all morning (in his gray socks) and met with several clients before we loaded Latifah up again and headed to Wisdom Lodge for the first installation of the weekend.
We checked into the Courtyard in Santa Ana to change into formal wear, and discovered a couple of things about the room: First, that the side of the bed I sleep on faces directly into a full length mirror. Who’s idea was THAT? I was prepared for the morning face shock on Saturday’s waking. Ugh!
But, they also thought of this: Yes, that’s the little sewing kit that is frequently found in a hotel bathroom, but look at what is in it! Scissors! Genius! This is my favorite hotel freebie so far, especially in a very standard Courtyard room. (It’s the little things, folks. The little things.)
We changed and scooted to the Pasadena Masonic Temple, where Wisdom Lodge meets, and Russ performed the Installing Officer’s part, with his typical aplomb and I restrained myself from any sort of sidelines corrections or giggling.
I’m guessing this photo was taken at 5:58pm. How do I know this? Because the installation was scheduled for 6:00pm and there is no moss that grows on a rolling stone. There were times when the lodge room was seen to have attendees fleeing for the sidelines as my Eternal Beloved and the rest of the installing crew marched in. Six o’clock means SIX O’CLOCK, DANGIT!!
It’s always great to hear about the accomplishments of the outgoing Master. If given the chance, Russ always challenges a new Master to find one thing about himself that he plans to work on during the year, some sort of personal growth to be gained alongside the growth of the lodge itself. The Masters never fail to meet such a goal, if only because the quest to find something to improve is a growth opportunity in and of itself.
And thus a new Master begins a year in the East! And I can’t leave Wisdom Lodge without a quick photo of another gorgeous interior of a beautifully appointed and maintained Lodge Room!
We closed our eyes in that Courtyard, (me knowing that morning would bring that scary mirror!) and got some much needed sleep before Saturday’s duo of events.
We arrived at Garden Grove Lodge for the installation of Adrian Stroe, and And look, we found our buddy, Ray! He’s always a jokester, and it was nice to see him.
Yep, getting ready to storm the sideliners Look out! Here they come!
And then a very beautiful installation ceremony was conducted by the lodge, and I had the pleasure of sitting with the wife of the ingoing Master, and learning more about the very interesting story of her family. The best part of the travels throughout California (no, not the installation ceremony) is getting to know the Masons and their families on a personal basis.
We had a delicious lunch and then jumped back into Latifah for the drive to Solomon’s Staircase Lodge in Buena Park.
Russ installed Solomon’s Staircase #357 and their young, engaging new Master, Michael Opsteegh, and I found the coolest thing in their lobby. It’s hard to read, but these are plaques that mention Bob West, the Grand Master when my dad was Deputy. One is a photo of the West’s home in Placerville, which I remember visiting a number of times and even having a sleep over with Bob and Jeannie. It brought back such great memories to see their living room!
The second attached to the plaque thanking Edwin Robinson for the “Most Unique, Memorable, Spectacular Gift Ever Received by a Grand Master”!! In looking at the photo, I’m not really sure what that gift was, but knowing that Bob West was somewhat prone to superlatives, it could have been almost anything. That guy knew a good time, that’s for sure!
We had a great time at Solomon’s Staircase, and left for the Anaheim DoubleTree Hotel, where we slept a few hours before leaving for San Diego.
We arrived in San Diego and drove right to the beautiful Scottish Rite Building. The lodge was ready to go and the installation went without a hitch. Christian Quimpo was installed Master, and we were out the door to the next installation! Times like this it makes it hard to remember what city you’re in, but fortunately the next one was right there in San Diego!
We drove to the cute little lodge building that is the home of the John D. Spreckles No 657, and found some of the guys outside, and other setting up inside. They had a very cool DJ set up, and probably win the award for most rockin’ installation music! I believe I heard more than one Queen song!
The youth order participation was strong, and this young man was looking sharp!
The installation was carried out and the officers were in their new stations! They had a lovely dinner which we ate quickly, seeing that we had a long drive home. The traffic was pretty bad until we reached LAX, but we made it home unscathed, if tired!
So, if you’re playing at home, that’s eight installations so far!
Mileage 418, Total miles 109,565