Saturday, March 28, 2009

Weekend in San Diego

Last weekend we were in San Diego. It was Anthony's first trip there and for Jayson and me it was our first visit in 10 years. The impetus for the trip was to visit Anthony's brother and family, but we also added visits to my friend Rick and Jayson's friends Jim and Khristie.

It was kind of weird being in San Diego again. It brought up lots of memories for me, some good some bad. I was surprised how much I remembered about the place and was able to direct Rick through areas he wasn't familiar with. Seeing the place again reminded me of the things I didn't like about it when I lived there. It's just not the place for me.

Thursday after we arrived we spent the evening with Jim and Khristie. Actually, we spent some time wandering around Old Town before meeting them for dinner. Old Town is kind of interesting, although it's really nothing more than a lot of shops and restaurants in old buildings. It still has a nice feel. I used to joke that when visitors would be in town and wanted to go to Mexico I would drive them around up and down the freeway and then end up in Old Town. It's really what people think Mexico will look like, although Old Town is much much nicer than Tijuana. Dinner with Jim and Khristie was great. It was as if we'd seen them just last week and we were picking up right where we'd left off. Anthony and Jayson had fish bowl-sized margaritas, and of course finished them. It's funny to see Anthony, who says he doesn't drink, down 64 ounces of margarita.

The next day we spent tooling around town with Rick doing some sight-seeing. We made a trip to to Balboa Park, which is still one of my favorite places in San Diego. Anthony, Jayson, and I spent some time wandering around the main prado area but had to keep the visit short. We spent the evening with Anthony's brother and sister-in-law, John and Amber, and their two daughters, Olivia and Elizabeth. It was the first time Jayson and I had met any of the family but it was nice. They made us feel very welcome and comfortable. We had dinner at their house and then "hung out" just chatting and getting caught up.

I should insert here that our "rental" car for the weekend was Rick's Mercedes E55 AMG. It's his weekend car and was very generous in letting us use it. I had a great time driving it, sometimes too great. I definitely tried to drive the car as it was meant to be driven, namely fast. It was a real treat to drive it, and the fact that John and Amber lived 50 miles north of Rick meant that I got to really enjoy the drive.

Anyway, spent Saturday with John and Amber again and this time John drove us around Camp Pendleton. We actually didn't get to see much of Amber as she was running errands a lot of the day. Camp Pendleton is huge and it took a couple of hours to just touch on some of the highlights of the place. Still, it was interesting to see the place, and to spend time with Anthony's brother. John and Amber had plans for Saturday night so it was back to San Diego for the evening.

We had made reservations to go to one of my favorite restaurants, Cafe Eleven. It's been there for, as we found out, 24 years and I've been frequenting it for about 18 of those. The food was just as good as I remembered, and some of the same people were still working there, and remembered us. It was a nice dinner and evening, other than the fact that somehow I left significantly less for the bill than I should have, but I got it straightened out.

Sunday Jayson was leaving around noon so we had breakfast at DZ Akins, a Jewish deli that's always good, and then dropped him at the airport. Anthony, Rick, and I played tourists the rest of the day going to Point Loma and Sunset Cliffs, and seeing a little of downtown. The highlight for Anthony seemed to be getting to drive the Mercedes from Sunset Cliffs to where we had dinner in Point Loma. I'm glad he got to experience it at least. After dinner we were all tired so we watched a movie at home and called it a night. Monday meant that Anthony and I had to leave so we had a big breakfast out and then killed some time driving around Mission Hills, just so Anthony could more of San Diego. Rick dropped us at the airport and we had an uneventful flight home.

It was a good trip, and made for a nice weekend. It was great seeing Rick, along with everyone else. Rick was very generous in hosting us and providing us not only his car to use but also a very nice and comfortable place to stay. It's like visiting family whenever he and I are together. I just wish he and I lived closer to each other.

As is usual, here are some pics from the trip:

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Great photos again buddy, San Diego looks lovely too. :-)