Meals and Memories to Savor

Ruby's, Oceanside, CA
Overlooking the Pacific during lunch

This is my second post about our trip in September via Amtrak.

Going by train was perfect for us in many ways, but there were some drawbacks. Even on a sleeper, sleep can be difficult for some. The sleeper gave us a place to socially distance, but after a time it was good to go sit in the observation car. We appreciated the showers available to sleeper car passengers, tiny though they may have been.

We arrived ahead of schedule in Union Station in LA. Then we boarded the Pacific Surfliner to go South to Oceanside. This is where we met our son and his girlfriend.

This was a visit long overdue. And it was so good to hug them both and be with them in person. Good medicine for the soul.

My son recommended a nice burger place at the end of a pier, and off we went. The air was warm and breezy, the sun bright, the smell of the ocean welcomed us. All that fresh air heightened our appetites

We had spent 2 nights on the train, eating snacks and microwaved meals. It was time for something freshly made and cooked by skilled hands. Ruby’s satisfied our cravings.

What is it that makes food taste so good when you are outdoors?

At Ruby’s we had the best cheeseburgers ever. My husband mentioned it today at our dining room table. In Oceanside we ate, talked, laughed, watched the pigeons who wanted our fries, and enjoyed the company. Someone at our table may have “accidently” dropped some fries.

Oceanside from the pier
Oceanside, California, from the pier

We also enjoyed this view. Living in the heart of Missouri, where corn, soybeans, and cattle are everywhere, it is hard to imagine the vast ocean and sandy beaches. The waves, the sound of the surf, all the people enjoying the sun and water….it was as if we were transported to another world.

Ruby's
Ruby’s. Open for Patio Dining. Our son and girlfriend in the foreground.

Can you bottle that ambiance and bring it home? Sprinkle a little on your own home cooking and get the same result?

I wish.

The gift of hindsight shows me how it all comes together, like a favorite dish made by loving hands. What we bring to it makes the difference.

Anticipation of being present with one another after a long absence. Beautiful scenery. Fresh air. Delicious food. A time dedicated to enjoyment. No one in a hurry or needing to be anywhere else. Ingredients for meals and memories to savor.