Be Careful on Our Streets

On Friday, Sept. 7, a motorist apparently lost control of her car, hit the curb, jumped it, and went onto the sidewalk right outside our house. She then landed upside down on the street, breaking off the "Stop" sign at the intersection of Red Cedar and Aviary drives. Police and Fire-Rescue crews from stations 37 and 44 responded promptly, helped the injured driver, and transported her to the hospital. Crews cleaned things up.

The "Stop" sign needs to be replaced. Yes, I know 50% of drivers simply run through that "Stop" sign even now, but we cannot have it become 100% dangerously running it so close to Miramar Ranch Elementary School. We are lucky this was not during school hours, as kids might have been injured and other cars could have been involved.

New Captain at SDPD

We welcome Captain Dan Christman as the new commanding officer of the SDPD’s Northeastern Division, which covers Scripps Ranch. We also welcome Acting Lt. Mark Saunders. Both are very community-oriented and we look forward to working with them.

Happy Birthday, RSVP!

Nineteen years ago Bruce Browne and Marv Miles, representing Mira Mesa, and I, representing Scripps Ranch, met at Barbecue Ribs Restaurant and agreed to form our own Retired Senior Volunteer Patrol (RSVP). We patterned it after the successful Rancho Bernardo unit designed to augment and assist the San Diego Police Department (SDPD) in providing enhanced security for our homes and businesses.

The RSVP is still in business and provides thousands of hours of security patrols for both communities. We provide business and school checks, and for citizens we have vacation house checks and the You Are Not Alone (YANA) program for home-confined residents. In addition, we have one of the most effective Neighborhood Watch programs in the city. This complements the effort for more eyes to help police in the face of reduced law enforcement staffing.

I Am Proud to be an American

It took the death of our famed astronaut and first man on the moon to trigger a wave of patriotism and pride in American engineering and achievement–that of putting a man on the moon and returning him safely and then repeating the event so the world saw it was not a "fluke." Dr. Neil Armstrong was a notable first astronaut for all of his life.

As I was involved in the American space program and Werner Von Braun and the Army Ballistic Missile Agency, I remember it well. I remember saying to my father, "Imagine you drove the very first gas-powered car in your town in Iowa and then lived to see a man placed on the moon and driving a moon buddy."

What a privilege to be an American at this time and now with the orbiter on Mars sending back such wonderful pictures. With all the turmoil and problems in our world, we sometimes tend to forget what wonderful things we Americans can and have achieved for the world.

Being Realistic

I recall the urban legend of the need for NASA to have a writing instrument for astronauts to use in weightless space. They spent about $4 million developing a pen to write underwater, in space, on any surface–wow! The sobering word is when the Russians needed such an instrument, they found it–a pencil.

As we approach the time of certainly one of the most critical elections of our time, please look for the "pencil" and "author" who will write the successful American method for our needed recovery and reinforce America’s position as a leader for right in the world.

You, Your Children, and Their Schools

This past year has been one of uncertainties in all aspects of hiring and firing teachers, administrators, and school personnel to run our schools. It includes furloughs and reduction in school days with the potential adverse impact on the students and their learning.

This means all should and must ask you parents for additional financial contributions for support, with the expectation that the funds will only go for needed school-related work and projects. So plan to dig deep and help as you can even in these times of unemployment and income shortages. The funds collected are needed and will be well used.

Yes, Progress at Last

I hope you all noted the workers installing the new more attractive fence at the Water Plant on Scripps Lake Drive. The landscaping improvements will follow shortly, I’m happy to say.

Book Collection for Bataan Children’s Library

The effort last year to collect used books for shipment to the Philippines to set up a children’s library on Bataan is still viable. The collected books, however, are still stored at Miramar College and we will try to get them on their way as soon as arrangements can be made.

Aging Successfully

Our accident and accompanying injuries so close to my 90th birthday kind of blurred what was pre- and post-accident. However, it has made me more tolerant of others and less demanding and critical of myself and what I can do and enjoy. I also am learning what I simply can no longer do. A tough lesson for me.

I believe I have even learned to say "no" to taking on those things I love to do for our community but simply am not able to do. So, if you ask and I say "no," it is because of my limited remaining ability, not a change in attitude or my love of the Ranch.

Bob Dingeman