The Amgen Tour of California is set to begin next weekend. It doesn't have the world reknown that the Tour de France has, but it is one of the premier cycling races in the U.S. and actually most of the teams and atheletes participating will be headed for France in July.
The second stage starts at Town Square Park in Murrieta on Monday, May 13. A place I visit four days a week since J's school is across the street. Luckily, he doesn't have class on Mondays, so we will be watching on TV. I think that TV coverage has the city a little nervous because there has been a lot of work going at the park recently.
While I was snapping my pictures of the repaired Vietnam Memorial today I met Cal Benson who was visiting the Veterans Memorial for the first time. He is formerly of Evanson, Illinois, USAF retired, WWII Veteran. He told me that he lost one brother in the war and his other brother was in the first wave of the Normandy Invasion. And thanks be to God, was one of the few to live to tell about it (tears welled in his eyes as he talked about it).
Mr. Benson himself was recruited to be a pilot, but they had too many so they decided since he was small (due to surviving Polio) he would become a Ball-Turret Gunner. When he asked if I knew what that was, I paused and then flashes of the movie Memphis Belle popped into my head. Yes sir, I do know what that is. He regaled me with a few other stories about the Air Force bases he trained at (Nelles and Edwards before it was Edwards), and then I had to make my apologies and be on my way after thanking him profusely for his service and his stories.
The City of Murrieta has a fun pre-race day event planned in the park on Sunday May 12 including a 5K Walk for Hope, Family Festival, live music, food and kids activities.