Remarks on Arrival at Point Mugu Naval Air Station, California

February 19, 1981

I know this is your lunch hour, and so time's a wasting. [Laughter] But I have to tell you, this is quite an overwhelming reception at a naval base for a former horse cavalryman. [Laughter]

Ladies and gentlemen, we are most grateful for this warm welcome, to come out here with two of our California Congressmen and their ladies -- Congressmen Lagomarsino and Badham -- and brought our lawyer along too, the Attorney General. We all just decided -- well, it's only coincidence that I made a speech on inflation last night and turned up here this morning. [Laughter] We know that we will have to go back.

I know the ladies know about inflation. Once upon a time you used to put some money in your purse and go to the market and buy a bag full of groceries. Now you take a bag full of money, go to the market, and bring the groceries home in your purse. [Laughter] That's what we were talking about and what we are trying to correct.

Nancy and I are delighted to be back in California. This is the first time since the Inauguration, and I find that already I've become so much of a Washingtonian that I have a hard time keeping my eyes open in the California Sun. [Laughter] But it's wonderful to be back. We've been very homesick. And while it is wonderful there and we're pleased to be there and doing what we're doing, I hope that we'll be seeing you again, and on a fairly regular basis.

Nancy, would you like to say how happy you are to be back in California? No? No? Well, she is. Well, we won't keep you any longer except to say that -- incidentally, did you hear last night's speech? [Applause] Well, now I'm very much relieved. I wasn't going to mention it, because you were so friendly, and then I just kind of got curious as to whether you were friendly in spite of it or because of it.

We're grateful to be here and look forward to seeing you again and hope that some of the things that we said last night are going to take place and take place very quickly, because we think it's time to get America on the move again in the world. And we think it's time also for that which you represent here and the other branches of our service to take their rightful place in our society with the respect and the gratitude of the people extended to you for what you are all doing in our behalf, and we're going to see if that cannot happen too.

Thank you very much.

Note: The President spoke at 12:30 p.m. He then flew by helicopter to his ranch, Rancho del Cielo, near Santa Barbara.