Wednesday, August 4, 2010

And Now Back to Your Regularly Scheduled Programming….

Now back to our National LampKoons Vacation Highlights series. I know, you’ve lived for this moment. Read on. I promise it’s almost over.  OK not really.  It was a long trip. 

Where did we leave off? Oh that’s right, leavin’ Las Vegas . That reminds me of a song…..Long live the King.


We left Las Vegas after a long, hot, fun-filled, day of realizing life long dreams aka the Pawn Shop and the Las Vegas sign. We were going west young man. (Also a song.) California bound, a relatively short drive, short as in 6 hours. Fun fact…the area between Las Vegas and San Diego , Death Valley I believe, very closely resembles Radiator Springs from the Disney movie “Cars.” We stopped for gas and I half expected to see Lightning McQueen buzz down the street. Ever felt like you’re in a cartoon movie? It’s a little unsettling.

After our stop in Radiator Springs, we trekked on, excited to get our first glimpse of California , as this was uncharted territory for all 5 of us. We drove and drove and thought to ourselves, “It’s so weird that we haven’t seen a Welcome to California sign, we’ve got to be in California by now or at least getting close.” Imagine our surprise when we saw a sign that said “Click it or ticket it’s the California Law”. Oh wait, what, we’re IN California?!? When did that happen? Where’s the welcome sign, Arnold ? Geesh show a little hospitality. I may have to write a letter.

California is beautiful. Purple mountain’s majesty? Got it. Amber waves of grain? Not so much. And then we saw the sign for Los Angeles and I immediately started checking out every shiny, black Escalade, Suburban, and Range Rover we passed looking for the Kardashians or well, that was basically it. I love the Kardashians. Much to my dismay, the exit for San Diego came before we actually got close to LA. Maybe next time Kourtney, Kim, and Khloe.

Our first night in CA we stayed at a hotel on Miramar Marine Base. For you movie fans, this is where the movie Top Gun was based and filmed, it was Miramar Naval Station then. Oddly enough, I didn’t see Tom Cruise even once. I’m sure he’s much too busy these days being a couch jumping, controlling, freakazoid to hang around his old movie sets. Too bad, those were the good years for Tom, back before the crazy set in.

I just realized that before I can tell you about my dear husband’s epic blonde moment, I have to tell you about his first blonde moment of our trip. The one where on Day ONE of our vacation, he accidentally threw away his debit card. You know the debit card linked to the account with our entire vacation fund in it? That one. Thankfully, my card for that account was safely tucked away in my wallet so it wasn’t as detrimental as it could’ve been. He realized it was missing later that same day and was able to determine that he had thrown it away when getting gas and cleaning out the car. We called the bank first thing the next morning to cancel the card and were relieved to find out that it must’ve been in the garbage as no one had treated themselves to a week in Tahiti at our expense.

There you have blonde moment #1. 

The second one occurred our 2nd day in California.  Given that we stayed at hotels on military bases there was a whole rigamor that we went thru every time we left base and got back on, which involved stopping at the gate and GI Joe would have to show his license, military ID, and sometimes vehicle registration.  After being away from our hotel all day, we were heading back late at night and GI Joe asked me for his military ID.  He thought he'd handed it to me to put in my wallet for some reason, except that he hadn't.  He stopped the car along the side of a 4 lane highway at about 11:00 at night to search the car for it.  He found it stuck between the center console and the passenger seat.  Crisis averted..for now.  The next morning we were getting ready to check out of the hotel and move on to a different base and he was doing the pre checkout room inspection to make sure we hadn't forgotten anything and realized he didn't have his license.  We tore the room apart, dug thru the bag full of dirty clothes (eww), and searched the car looking for no avail.  He was near panic mode.  After all, how would he ever prove to border patrol that he was legal now?   After an exhaustive search we determined it was lost before we got to the hotel the night before.  As a last resort, we retraced our route from the night before back to the place along the highway where he had pulled over to search for his military ID.  And would you believe..there was his license laying in the passing lane of the 4 lane highway?  He was able to retrieve it without getting run over so that was a plus.  We were then able to resume our relaxing and wonderful vacation in sunny San Diego.

Except it wasn't sunny...or all.  I'm adding false advertisement to my list of grievances in my letter to Arnold.  Here's basically what the forecast was for our entire stay in San Diego:  cloudy and 63 degrees.  FYI...cloudy and 63 is not tank top and flip flop weather.  Throw in a cool ocean temp of 62 degrees and you're basically looking at near hypothermia.  Of course that didn't stop us, after all we'd drive thousands of miles to get to the beach so darnit we were going to get in some beach time if it was the death of us!  We went to the beach  couple different times, mostly just to walk along it because we're wimps.  Then we had our "beach day" on the one day that the sun KIND OF peaked thru the clouds and the temp topped out at 65, and not only was the beach packed with people but they were in the water!  Californians may or may not be delusional.   The kids swam and played for hours while GI Joe and I sat holding down the towels on the beach fully dressed.  When they finally emerged they had blue lips and were shivering.  And then we had ice cream from a shop on the boardwalk because oddly enough they weren't selling hot chocolate, and all was right (and cold) with the world. 

After our beach day and nearly losing appendages due to frostbite, we started on our quest to find sweatshirts.  Obviously, that was exactly the souvenir we expected to bring home from SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA.  But seriously, it was so cold and do you think there was a sweatshirt or long sleeved shirt to be found?  No, not at all.  Delusional I tell you. 

To be continued......

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