Wednesday, September 19, 2012

La Jolla

The La Jolla story starts with my friend Lisa suggesting a trip to Channel Islands to go kayaking. Those plans were dashed when she called and found that our free weekend was completely booked. I did a little google search and found this kayaking tour in La Jolla that seemed pretty fun so....

We packed into my car, stopped to pick up Roger and ended up in La Jolla. After a quick lunch at a deceivingly dingy but excellent burger joint, we checked in for our kayaks. Now.. if you remember the first time I went kayaking, there was very little required and we simply pushed off a calm shore in Newport Harbor. This time it was a little different. Several times we heard warnings about taking electronics and valuables, everyone advising us to leave it behind in the lockers. I finally admitted defeat and left my camera behind so I have no pictures of how awesome we all looked in our life jackets and bright yellow helmets. Trust me... we looked cool. We made it out past the waves without tipping over or getting washed back to shore, spent two hours on the ocean and got to kayak into some La Jolla caves. Getting back to shore was a different story but for the sake of brevity:
Intentions: paddle hard with the wave, lean back when it breaks and let the wave push you in.
Reality: paddle hard with the wave, get turned sideways, get flipped upside down with kayak on head, lose sunglasses, get soaking wet. Now you have the short version of how my sunglasses found a new home.

After returning our kayaks and retrieving our dry belongings, we headed back to the beach where the boys frolicked (yes they really did) in the waves and Lisa and I enjoyed the warm sand and sun. 

Lisa's Dad clued us into this little store with access to a cave through a back staircase. It's appropriately named "the Cave Store". Considering Lisa and I were both victims of ocean theft and were left without sunglasses, we were very suspicious of the very random assortment of used looking sunglasses for sale at the front of the store. :)

We walked down this very long, very steep, slightly wet and slippery tunneled staircase to a small dock/pier inside a cave. 

 Kind of neat but not a must-see for the $4 entrance. 

If i remember correctly, this man dug out the tunnel by hand many many years ago and originally used it to smuggle in immigrants and whiskey during prohibition. I guess that makes him an entrepreneur of sorts.

 After our tunnel excursion we walked through La Jolla looking for a place to enjoy dinner. 

Do you know the Muffin Man? The one who lives on Drury Lane? Well, I don't but I know where to find his house now :)

We picked Karl Strauss Brewery Company. They had an extensive menu which is really bad for an indecisive foodie such as myself.

I finally chose a chicken burger with avocado, beer baked bacon and all the other usual goodies. The house chips were not worth the calories unfortunately. Flavorless and overbaked. =(
The burger/sandwich was way too much food for me but was still very good. 

After dinner we completed our loop around town. The more we walked and the later it got, the more I realized how under-dressed we were. Mind you... we were coming from a kayaking tour and an hour on the beach. We probably smelled faintly of fish and saltwater but everyone around us was in formal attire, out for dinner. Every Bentley and Audi we walked by in Valet parking made me increasingly grateful that I had hidden my little car in an underground garage. 

I nearly passed by this amazing store but I'm so glad I didn't. If it had just been me I would have spent much more time inside. Tons of olive oils, and pestos to taste. The most intriguing store I've seen in a while. They have formal EVOO tastings weekly and you can eat dinner over the ocean at the back of the store. One day... I'm going back there to do just that!

As the sun was setting we walked out on this tiny peninsula over a cave. Other than the birds it was just us out over the ocean. Oh! and the barking sea lions.


Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Life isn't a-Fair

I don't care to look back in time and see exactly how long it's been since I last posted anything. Longer than I care to admit. I feel like much time has passed and many things have happened since then. Here's a short list

1. Spent the day in La Jolla. 
2. Surprise visit from my sister. 
3. Trip to the county fair.
4. Working solo (no training)
5. Finished painting my desk.
etc. etc. etc....

I'm not going to overpower you with all of that in one post especially considering you've have a nice long break from me for a while. Since I've been working like crazy the last few weeks I'll just post about the fun stuff over the next few days week. 

My sister and I schemed for a little bit and picked the best weekend for her to make a trip to surprise my parents. Since I was working the weekend I had Friday off. (yay) We spent the day lounging around and when Katelyn got up from her nap, we headed out to the fair in the blazing heat, dressed as cool as we possibly could. 

Just after we arrived we were joined by my brother and his family. It's great to see all these young cousins interacting and having good fun together. 

 We got to meet Benjamin Franklin which was impressive to me because I always assumed he was long dead. We endured an awkward few moments when a woman whom I recognized as a frequent library patron verbally accosted him and couldn't seem to understand why this impostor was speaking of Mr. Franklin in the first person. :)

Two of our ministers came with us and they documented their celebrity citing too. 

Dad was more than impressed with this man's historical knowledge and accuracy. If he could have he probably would have stayed there all night. 

Late into the day I decided to start documenting all the weird food that fairs are famous for. I only got a few as it was getting late and we were getting ready to leave but trust me.... they were not lacking.


In addition, there were deep fried snickers bars, chocolate fries, Chocolate dipped bacon and the usual suspects, bloomin' onions, hot dog on a stick, massive turkey legs and anything you can dip in batter and fry (and even some things you wouldn't think you could fry... coke?!)

We enjoyed a western rodeo that was commentated by an older gentleman with comical enthusiasm. The kids seemed to enjoy it though. 

 Mom treated us to Gelato in waffle cones. It was good but the one I got had mango skins whipped into it which kind of defeats the effect of a smooth and creamy ice cream. 

Katelyn enjoyed hers in a cup until she decided our cones looked much more fun!

Laura and I splurged and split the $15 price tag for 2 pairs of sunglasses to replace the ones I gifted to the Pacific Ocean. (more on that story when the La Jolla post comes around)

Joe and Blake joined us later and took turns using up funzone tickets with Katelyn. Joe won her a stuffed bear and Blake took her on the Merry-go-Round or as Katelyn calls it "horsies go round'n'round"!


 Petting baby lambs (that I cut out of the frame for some reason)

 Games that cost a fortune
and very tired kids and adults with sore feet. It had all the makings of a respectable day at the fair.