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Ray's World Adventures 1999

San Ramon Art & Wind Festival
May 30-31,1999

 Ray at San RamonIt seemed only a few weeks ago that I was here. I couldn't believe a year had gone by, but when I looked at my calendar and noted the places and the thousands of air miles I'd traveled -- yes it had been a year. This was my fourth sponsored trip to San Ramon.

Each year it seems to get better and better. It is like one big kite family get together everything runs so smoothly. I think it is because everyone tries to do his or her very best to make it so. Everyone has a job and does it well. Lori Morrison, John Morrison, Michael Weingand and his lovely wife, Sharon Champie, and Brian Champie, the big Daddy. How this guy manages to put it all together amazes me. He never seems to tire; first at the festival and last out, and still has time to babysit me.

Overall, this was the best one that I have attended. From start to finish it was a huge success; the weather was super, there was no shortage of spectators (they were there by the hundreds). The great demos given by so many flyers kept them excited and well entertained. It was also great to see so many beautiful single line kites decorating the sky. The candy drops were also a great success; the children left the field at each drop with their hands full. I will not say too much about the wind -- at least there was wind -- but have you ever flown a ballet from one direction and finished in the opposite direction? Very tricky, and it gave the field crew plenty of exercise. Right, Susan?

I was also amazed to see how far some of the flyers have progressed in the last year, especially the ladies. It was a treat to watch them perform. I have always said they make better flyers than men because they are born with a soft touch, grace and beauty. We men have to show how macho we are. (By the way I have been told that I fly like a lady and that I look great in shorts)

 Brian Champie Again one of the highlights for me -- and likewise for everyone else, it seemed -- was the party at Brian's home on Saturday evening after a very successful first day of the kite festival. Man, what great tucker! Smoked turkey, potato salad, green salad, beer, and to top it off, Sharon's famous fruit pies made with 5 different kinds of berries. They are something else! But I could not believe my eyes when I saw people go back for second and third helpings. I mean, where do they put it all? After all, one can only eat so much, right? But I must admit?. the four pieces I had were delicious.

Thank you NCKC for sponsoring me to your festival. I had an awesome time. Thank you to all the wonderful people who never hesitate to give me a hand. Thank you Susan for field crewing for me. I have been looking for someone to travel around this planet with me who is a good field crew person plus a kite bag carrier. Your name is on the top of my list.

Thank you Brian for your hospitality and for letting me share your home, but mostly for your friendship these many years. I loved it when you tucked me in each night ?but I think you carried it a little to far this time when you sang me a lullaby, especially after you have had a few bevies. Remember I can't hear it any way. But I was told the next day that your neighbors 3 blocks away could.

Thank you for listening.

Ray.





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