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Happy Landing On A Chocolate Bar
6:43 p.m. - 2003-07-12

He had a hankering for a trip on the good ship lollipop, or at least, a tour of the Hershey Chocolate Factory, so we took a nice drive through the farmland to Oakdale. Unfortunately, the factory no longer gives tours, but they have a really nice visitor center and gift shop, and let's face it, we were not there for education, we were there for chocolate. The nice thing about buying candy there is that it is soooo fresh, probably made only days before. He bought malt balls, dark chocolate KitKats, Almond Joy miniatures (for me), Hershey's Nuggets, and I tried a Zagnut bar, which I had never heard of before. Then, I drove us home, but first, we stopped in Modesto at the book store so we could buy some books, and I found a lovely big book on Bakelite jewelry, which I hope to use as an art reference. Of course, my book cost twice as much as all of theirs put together, but on the plus side, they got many books and I only got one.

I had a lucky find at the bookstore though. I have a copy of an old knitting pamphlet from the 50's called Cardigans, Cardigans, Cardigans. I really like that booklet, but someone in the distant past mutilated it somewhat and part of the last page is missing and some of the middle is cut out. I have looked and looked for another copy, and even posted a request on the KnitList, but today, there it was, a perfect copy, and only $3. I love my old knitting booklets!

It is still hot, but having just returned from the Central Valley, I can say that things could be worse. I also have some advice for other travelers to Modesto and Oakdale - go to the bookstore first, then the chocolate factory, because that town is an oven in the summer, and your poor chocolate will melt in the car. We, however, were swift so ours is fine and tasty. Stopped in at the $2 Fabric Store, but it has become a real dump with huge tiles down in the ceiling and an air of gloom, but on the upside, they are soon moving to a new location so the ugly building will be passe. It didn't really look that much different from our branch merchandisewise, so it is not worth an extra trip just for that, but we really go there for the bookstore anyway. I like Modesto. Except for the murders.

We got hungry before we ever got to Oakdale so we stopped for lunch in Escalon. Abby spotted a little Mexican place and what a find! It was cheerful and clean and the burritos were as big as your head. Skimpy on the meat and lots of beans and rice, just how we like it. Very homey tasting, heck, it even had cilantro in it, which is good if you like that, but it shows they know what they are doing. Lots of Espanol spoken there. Don't remember the name of it, I'll ask Abby......Tapatio El Pastor.

We stopped at a fruit stand on the way home and he got some very fragrant strawberries, so Abby is going to make some shortcake tomorrow. We are going to work on her quilt tomorrow, quilting from opposite ends, and will rent some videos to while away the time. After we quilt all day we will reward ourselves (and him) with shortcake. I don't think I will be losing any weight until she goes back to college and we resume our spartan routine.

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