Ten days in the city, we forgot just how hectic the city can be. It’s the driving and that traffic, we are such wusses now. We found ourselves driving everyday to someplace for something and not planning well with morning but mostly afternoon rushes. You forget when you have been away from so much civilization just how well and sometimes not well, it manages it vast stream of humans and their cars. California and perhaps many large cities are car cultures. Just one person a car..strange after what we are used to South of the border, the cars are full and pickups piled with passengers.
Our choice of a park 25 miles or so East of the coast was a decision we made to try to acclimatize to the noise and rush slowly but I think it actually ended up being more work. In the future we will try to stay closer to the center but being summer, and being San Diego means that every park is booked for every weekend, our only choice was way East. Note to self..Book ahead if you are going to San Diego in summer…months and months ahead! We were looking forward to a state beach and some of that California vibe but no vacancies to be found…and it was raining..go figure;)
We did get in some family time which was wonderful with my brother and his family, my uncle and cousins which is always a treat for me. As well we got to explore the amazing diversity of shopping and food stores that San Diego offers.
From a Vietnamese supermarket, SiêuThịViễ-Dong-V where live carp and catfish swim in the tanks looking at you like a Monty Python skit to the elephants that guard the store’s door (each day an offering of a banana or apple is placed on their trunks) to the aromatic Indian stores full of Mike’s favorite spices to Lebanese, Greek and Italian delicatessans..my mouth watered a great deal while we explored the variety that we miss in Baja.
Speaking of food. We have learned YELP reviews can not be trusted..wow..in any way..or read the very worst reviews and make your mind up from there. Ask people with similar food tastes if you can find them..quantity is not a recommendation for good food folks….
Our highlight trip was to Balboa Park and the Museum of Natural History.
We met up with a Facebook friend, my first time for that, and what a lovely experience it was. Hopefully the first of many to come. What an exciting visit to the Botany, Paleontology and Entomology Departments.I was so busy looking at everything I didn’t take as many pictures as I should have! The saved plants and the work that goes into pressing and mounting them, and the archives! The fossils and the painstaking work of sifting through bags of sand and little rocks under a microscope and then the bugs..wow..hundreds and hundreds of insects and butterflies..I was astounded-even a new tarantula from southern Baja that has yet to be named! And so many wonderful and pleasant people who took a few moments out of their day to talk to us.
Balboa Park in one of my favorite spots in San Diego. The Museums, and buildings, the flowers and trees and the tree flowers..and the carousel. I have a weak spot for these amazing rides from the past. Perhaps my first love of horses came from one, I don’t know but they have always fascinated me and the one in Balboa Park is a delight.The carousel is a 1910 Herschell-Spillman menagerie carousel, and it was made in North Tonawanda, New York, and shipped to California and ended up in Balboa Park in 1922. The diversity of animals and wonderful horses is a sight to see. Mike always has to drag me away!
So we are done with the city for the moment. We hit the road this morning and it is becoming easier to gather one’s life and pack it smoothly and without too many scraped knuckles. The sway bar and stabilizer bars are now not a battle but go on with ease as does the last minute check of doors and lights and everything stowed for seaworthiness..er road worthiness I suppose now. All those years of training as a child living on a sailboat have been put to use.
We crossed the border at SanYsidro in the correct lane (Bus lane\declare lane) this time, the last time involved some backing up..0_0..so we were ready.They X-rayed the truck and trailer..looking for arms I imagine, easy to acquire North of the border and not legal here. We had to walk the cats through Customs and Immigration to avoid them getting X-rayed to many oohs and aahs from the delightful young women in Immigration and Customs. I think the three boys liked that but not getting put back in the truck, there was some whining and yowling…are we there yet???..but they settled in to the last bit of the trip over the bumpy toll road and now are basking in the Mexican sun purring happily. Hopefully little by little it will become less stressful for them. I worry as they are 15 this year..no spring chickens.
We’ll leave it here for today, it is beautiful afternoon in Ensenada and my palate is screaming for a carne asada taco;)
We’ll see what tomorrow brings. Stay tuned:)