We took Emily out to lunch today to Azu , a delicious little tapas (and other things) place in charming downtown Ojai. Yes, the whole town looks like a 1950's movie set for "Leave it to Beaver" or "Ozzie and Harriet" but I love going there. My father's first parish was in Oxnard and many in his congregation were from Ojai so a visit there was not uncommon. In fact, I learned to horseback ride on the Newman's citrus ranch when I was about five. Long history with the place. But I digress.
Her brother was also in attendance to record the festivities.
He, in fact, took a load of really good photos which he has said he will send on to me. ANDREW: if you're reading this, don't forget to do this. I want to post some of your pix here! Yours are much better than mine.
The banquet was held out on the playing field under a big white tent. Each graduating senior is allotted tickets for family only and the place was packed with joyous mothers and fathers (and grandparents), happy at their childrens' accomplishments and thrilled to be out from under the steep cost of this very worthy enterprise. Seeing these kids, watching and listening to them, it gives one hope for the future. I know it's only 62 of them, but it's a start. And there will be another crop just as stellar next year.
We left after dinner, award announcements and a speech or two, and returned to our hotel. Tomorrow is an early morning. Graduation is at 9 AM. Caitlin and Mike will be here at 7:45 and we'll go together. Seems amazing that we did all of this only 5 years ago for Andrew.