South To The Sun
"A Winter Break trip to San Diego"
For years we've talked about going to San Diego with the kids.
We finally cashed a bunch of miles I've had forever and picked up 5
tickets. The kids are off for mid-winter break from school and
with a Monday holiday I only had to use 4 days vacation for the weeks
trip. Using flyer miles means we didn't get our pick of the prime
flights, but flying down on Sunday evening and back on the following
Saturday afternoon has worked out well.
Dawn returned from the traumatic experience of leaving the dogs with
Dennis around 4:15pm. After a quick dinner we left the house for
the airport just after 5. On pulling into the lot we were informed
that all the Masterpark lot's were full, so much for that coupon.
We found space at Doug Fox and after brief wait for a shuttle we were on
our way. Having printed out our Alaska Air boarding passes before
hand at home, we were able to go directly to the TSA security
Overall the security experience was positive.
Dawn had stashed multiple clear baggies full of liquids in our bags and
Mike failed to find the one in his backpack which had to be searched.
Sam, looking suspicious no doubt because of the hair, had his backpack
scanned for explosives. Once we were all re-assembled we
headed to gate D9 for the flight.
Boarding went well and unlike Dawn's expectations we
had no problems stowing our roll-a-boards in the overhead. Dawn,
Nick and I had seat 19A, 19B, 19C while Sam and Nick were behind us in
20A and 20B. Making the 2 hour and 35 minute flight with older
children was very pleasant.
Once on the ground in San Diego we found our way out
of the airport, across the sky bridge to the rental car island. I
managed to flag down the Dollar rent a car van just as it was about to
leave. We had to wait a bit at the rental counter as things were
moving slow at 11pm and the Australian backpack boys in front of us
seemed to be having issues.
Our check in went smooth and soon we were in our white
2008 Chrysler Town and Country van on our way to the condo. After
a few around the block circles we found the rental office and retrieved
our paperwork and key from the lock box. We have unit 712, a
corner unit 2 bedroom condo at 'Capri by the Sea'. This is a large
tower unit right on the boardwalk at Pacific Beach. Our assigned
parking spot in the garage is #1 which is a narrow hole all by itself at
the end of the lower level. It's a tight squeeze and everyone has
to get out before I park.
A quick elevator ride up found us in our unit.
'Capri by the Sea' is a older building but our unit has nice decor and
features. A large living and dining room with a 52" flat panel HD
TV is a nice feature. The entire beach end is wall to wall floor
to ceiling glass with a spectacular view of the Pacific ocean. The
master bedroom likewise has a all glass end with a great view. It
is large and spacious with a King size bed, sofa, desk, and it's own
bathroom. The second bedroom has a queen bed and two more twin
beds, just perfect for the boys. They have their own bathroom as
well. The kitchen is fully equipped although it's cabinets and
decor is not quite up to the style of the rest of the condo.
As it was after midnight by the time we settled in we
all headed to bed.
Getting Our Bearings
We slept late until 10:30 recovering from the previous days travel.
The view is fantastic and this being a holiday the surfers are out in
mass riding the waves and just hanging out on their boards outside the
Close to noon everyone was finally ready to leave for
some food. We first stopped by the rental office to pickup our
second set of keys and our free Go San Diego cards then headed off for
the I-Hop we recalled seeing last night. We made left onto Garnett
instead of Grand avenue and found ourselves touring a great district of
small shops that may need a later visit. Anyone need a Tattoo?
Breakfast was filling with many piles of pancakes,
eggs and bacon. We then drove south a ways on Mission Blvd and
ended up at a park on Mission bay. We had looked at a condo along
this very beach but were glad we decided to go with the pacific side
rather than the bay side.
It's a partly cloudy day with sun breaks here and
there. The boy's wanted to play on the beach so we dropped them
back at the condo then headed to the store. We parked in the
Ralphs underground garage and then walked up Mission Blvd a ways to a
shoe store to get some better shoes for our days of walking ahead.
Then Dawn and I filled a cart to the brim with food for the week at
Thankfully there was a cart at the elevator in the
garage and we managed to get all the bags up to the condo in one trip.
After unloading we went down to the beach to join the boys. Mike
was digging a hole into the bank and was up to his waist in the hole
when we arrived. He's a total sand mess. Nick was into
leaping off the bank and landing into the soft sand. Sam was well,
Sam, a typical 16 year old tied to his phone texting his friends.
We went back up to the condo around 5pm. Mike
was so dirty that we stopped at the wash down station and hosed him down
with a cold hard spray. Back inside he and Nick needed showers to
get clean. Dawn took a nap while we all watched a Myth Busters
marathon on TV.
Dinner was Fried Pork Chops, Rice, Salad, and rolls
followed by Ice Cream Bars for desert. The rest of the evening was
mostly watching TV and we all turned in around 10pm.
Capri by the Sea
The view North from our condo balconies.
The view South from our condo balconies
Our living room
The boys liked the giant flat panel TV.
You're in California Nick. Why are you cold?
The master bedroom
Lot's of space to spread out
The boys bedroom, 1 double and two twins, perfect.
The clothes are already starting to explode.
Our Ride, a '08 Chrysler Town and Country. In many
ways a weird car.