California Vacation

The Vacation log
Fri 09.20 .... Travel day
Long flights, some turbulence,  but not bad ... nice hotel right on the San Diego Harbor Island peninsula ... went to Old Town ... kinda boring (yeah, I know it’s called “Old Town”, hence lots of “old stuff”), but the Old Town Mining Co. Restaurant was fantastic! Great burger, great beer ... a microbrew called Lightning Thunderweizen - nice citrus’y flavor, like a Sam Adams Summer Ale, but with more lemon flavor.
Nice walk along the peninsula, right across from Coronado Island and the Naval Base. 
Sat 09.21 ... San Diego Zoo
The zoo was HUGE. Lots of walking up and down ramps, etc. Tired, grumpy, hungry, thirsty, ... saw Pandas. Lots of animals. But just too much to try to see in one trip.
Little Italy for supper ... went to Filippis ... a ONE HOUR WAIT to get in. Not worth it. We all ordered WAY TOO MUCH, ... pizza was undercooked, a Bud Light made it “tolerable”. 
This place was rated "best pizza in San Diego". Bull. They evidently don't really know how to cook pizza in San Diego. You gotta “cook” it.  so the dough is a bit crispy, and the cheese has those nice bubbly, brown “highlights”. The restaurant was packed. I don’t know why.
Sun 09.22 ... Legoland
Fun, but more for kids. We did go on the mini-rollercoasters (my speed). Breyers Rocky Road 1-scoop was just the right size and "hit the spot."  Lunch was pretty good barbecue chicken & ribs that Sue and I split. Mini-land was cool.  Took lots of pics.
On the way, we found a store called “Nothing Bundt Cakes”.  Yup, Bundt Cakes.  That’s it.
Tried to go to the local deli for supper,  but it was closed (it is a Sunday).  Back to the hotel restaurant (which was going to be expensive) and I just wanted something cheap and SMALL. Maybe a salad.  Yeah, Sue and I split a big salad with grilled chicken. As it turned out, a former schoolmate of Kirk's works there, so he gave us all a discount.  Very nice!
The day ended much better than I thought. 
Mon 09.23  U.S. Midway / Coronado Island
Visited the Midway Battleship Museum, … lot’s of fighter planes, tours of the ships interior and operations, etc.  Pretty cool. Big. Huge boat.
Then off to the ferry across the bay to Coronado Island - lunch from Spyro Gyros (Greek sausage - very good), and visited the Hotel Del Coronado. Looks a lot like the Grand Floridian (which was based on this design). Obviously only the rich stay here (it’s at least $300 a night). Fancy.  Too Fancy. Opulent. Downstairs and around the back they have a whole “mini-mall” of shops with extremely overpriced items.  A small bag of chocolate covered almonds sells for $12. Seriously. A Rice-Krispies Square (which you can buy in any grocery store for a buck or so) is marked up to $5.  Not impressed. The rich can have it.
Tues 09.24  Balboa Park
Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz. ot sure why we even came here.  Lot’s of walking around, museums (each of which have a separate entrance fee of around $20 a person). We went to the Japanese Garden - $4 each to get in and walk around a Japanese Garden.  Yup.  That was it. Walked around a few other areas, but the maps are not well marked, and we had a $4 hot dog, and then my wife’s sister found an outdoor cafe. I was just beat after this trip, and went back to the hotel. Had a great roast beef sammich (yeah, I call ‘em “sammiches”!) from the deli/liquor store next door. 
I’m not a person who likes to go around and look at pretty flowers or plants.  We have flowers and plants in Massachusetts.  I can look out my own window and go “ooh”. Trees. Pretty. I don’t feel the need to fly 3000 miles to look at stuff I see right out my own window. This day was kind of a wash for me.
Wed 09.25 Drive to Anaheim - Disneyland
Hotel right across the street from Disneyland, so no driving, parking lots, etc. The Matterhorn was WAY TOO BUMPY, but Space Mountain was good. Haunted Mansion is decorated like “Nightmare Before Christmas”. Cute, but I’d like to see it normal. Indiana Jones ride was good. Yep, it’s Disney. Overpriced meals, snacks, drinks, etc. Whining tired kids, angry parents, standing in line after line, and so on. Yay Disney. 
Thursday 09.26  California Adventures (yeah Disney)
Cars ride.  Best. Thing. Here. Did it a few times.  Excellent ride. Very well designed. Highly recommended. Also did the California Screamin’ loop coaster. I survived. At night we watched the “World of Color” show. 2 hour wait, with a screaming kid right next to us. I mean it. Let me say it again. 2 hour wait, with a screaming kid right next to us. Seriously, why bring any kid under the age of 6 to Disney? And why is any kid screaming? You’re at frickin’ Disney! Shaddap and be HAPPY! Anyhoo, … interesting use of fountains, animation etc. Crescendo after crescendo. How many crescendos  can you have? Apparently lots of them. But the show was well done and enjoyable.
Friday 09.27 Hey Disney (again, yeah really)
More Disney. Yeah. More disney. Small World, Space Mountain, Train Ride around the park, etc. Tired out. I’m done.  But later we did to back to the Cars ride and do it again.  Best. Thing. There. Chocolate Soft-Serve ice-cream dipped in chocolate. Worth it.
Sat 09.28  the trip home
What can I say about a stop-over in Arizona, then another stop-over in Colorado, then home. I’ve now been to Vermont, New Hampshire, Delaware, Illinois, Nevada, Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, New York. Long trip. Glad it’s done. I think I’m retiring from travel forever, unless by some miracle (or brain damage) I decide to go somewhere. Not likely, though.

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