If the title didn’t already give it away I am currently in San Diego. It’s not just me, however, its a whole slew of folks. It is myself, my two boys, my wife and a whole slew of other people who are, in one way or another, related to my wife. Yes, it is a true family vacation; and I plan on sharing every moment of it with you.
Why, you may be asking, would you would want to read about every moment of my family vacation. The answer to that is: I don’t know, but I plan on making a lot of it up so that you, the reader, will have to decipher what is real and what isn’t it. Fun, yeah?
If you answered in the affirmative, please read on. If you didn’t give yourself a big pat on the back and have a beer for me!
DAY 1 – PORTLAND – LOS ANGELES – SAN DIEGO
My alarm went off at 5:30 this morning. I hit snooze and slept for nine more minutes. When the alarm went off again I did what I knew I should do: I hit the snooze button and slept for an additional nine minutes. They were glorious nine-minute sleep intervals too and made up almost a quarter of the sleep that I had managed that night. With a groan from me and a bellow from my wife I resisted the urge to hit the snooze a third time; I’m greedy when it comes to the snooze button. As I stumbled through a shower, getting dressed, etc all I could think of was coffee, and that I needed to remember to bring my Kindle. Neither happened. Too many bags to pack and repack; too many chargers (I did remember to bring the Kindle’s charger) to throw into the laptop case; too many people to say good-bye to just in case I came back from this vacation suffering from some sort-of stress-related disability.
With everything packed into the car I headed to the airport. Apparently the rest of my family wanted to come with me so I then had to drive back home to pick them up and forget to bring my Kindle yet again. With the whole family, as far as I can remember, loaded into the car we drove to the airport. Upon arrival I dropped my wife and kids off, along with the approximately 3,562 bags, suitcases, car seats and strollers, at the departure area and drove away as fast I could while yelling out the window, “nany, nany, nany!”. Just as I was about to pass the economy parking lot my wife’s death stare caught up with me and whacked me in the back of the head causing me to jerk right into the parking lot and catching the shuttle back to the airport.
Things went smoothly at the airport save for my two trips through security and failed attempt to get one of the security guards to go on the trip in my place and as our airplane took off, the first leg of our journey began. It was while we were sitting on this airplane that I 1) realized that I had forgotten my Kindle and 2) was struck with the idea of writing a daily blog on this trip. While I did, in fact, forget to bring my Kindle what I was really struck with wasn’t this idea but instead a fellow passengers “oversized luggage” if you catch my drift. It wasn’t pleasant but it did add fuel to my vacation blog post fire.
Speaking of fire, on the second leg of the journey, from Los Angeles to San Diego, I expected the plane to catch on fire at any second. It was one of those smallish prop-planes that seems to be made out of cardboard and aluminum foil and, in mind at least, that makes for a very combustible combination. Obviously, it didn’t. At least not until we began our descent and the whole left wing went up in flames; POOF, it went, and had it not been for the heroics of my oldest son, who just happened to have some legos on hand and quickly rebuilt the wing (and propeller), we surely would have perished. It was a proud moment for me.
Another source of pride for me was when I finally found Stone Brewing Company’s Liberty Station Bistro & Pub. It took two phones, many wrong directions from the Map app on my iPhone and a strong desire for several beers after the long journey that we just had but we made it and were treated to quite an experience. The Liberty Station Bistro and Brewery is a sight to behold. Between its massive stone accentuated bar, a table that literally had a stream/fountain flowing underneath it, it’s stream with live fish flowing their beer garden and the quality of both the food and beer, it was one of the single greatest brewery experiences of my life. If it wasn’t for the fact that we had already rented a house I, quite literally, would have been content staying there, welcome or not, for the rest of the week. Before caving into the inevitable I bought a litre of Stone’s Double-Dry Hopped Ruination IPA along with some shirts, a hat and other souvenirs. Having spent the majority of my vacation budget at Stone we made our way to the rental house to begin our vacation in earnest.
After unpacking our suitcases we were greeted with the entirety of my wife’s family as they returned from dinner. It was nice to see them all but as the noise and talking grew to a fever pitch I had no choice but to go grocery shopping. Grocery shopping is a soothing activity for me and also presents a great opportunity to buy some good and untried San Diego beer for the rest of the week. While I was perusing the beer selection at the grocery store my oldest son, I gathered, was swept out into the ocean where he was saved by a pod of dolphins and, in a show of appreciation to said dolphins, he built them lego flick missles to help them fend off the numerous sharks that surrounded him. I couldn’t be prouder! Not to be outdone, however, my youngest son, at the tender age of three, apparently fended off an invasion of Soviet Cartoon firemen by utilizing his greatest asset: his refusal to go on the potty. Not wanting to get in the way of my son’s potty development, the Soviet firefighters slunk away and, allegedly, were heard mumbling, “Putin will not be happy with us but in potty’s we trust.”
I don’t know what that meant but as my litre of Stone’s Double-Hopped Ruination IPA is coming to an end and an amazing carne asada quesadilla I had from a small mexican food shop called Sara’s Mexican Food is producing rumbling in my stomach, it is the best I can do. Besides I have a multiple snooze induced nine minute naps to look forward to in the morning and I’m still recovering from the “oversized baggage” wound from the trip.