Friday, April 17, 2009

Escape to San Diego

Now my excuse is that I don't have my camera USB cable to download photos to my Mac. I'm slow to write because we are often without Internet connection. Presently, we are north of San Diego, mostly in Cardiff-by-the-Sea. Allison has two weeks off from school so we decided to follow the Brown family up the Baja to San Diego, a road trip that was uneventfully safe. They left last week, but we're here for awhile longer visiting friends and family, shopping, sight-seeing, eating. Eating. I've sampled it all to my heart's content: In-n-Out burgers, corn dogs, VG's donuts, Red Mango frozen yogurt, pasta, pizza, cotton candy, anything that can not be found in Loreto-by-the-Sea, Baja California Sur.

Yessiree. And that is just the eats. We've towed Allison through Sea World, the Birch Aquarium in La Jolla, hiking and para-gliding in Torrey Pines, (yes, she para-glided) nearly every museum in Balboa Park, two movies of her choice, and several trips to the shopping mall for all those "necessities" we've been without. At some point we will be fat as ticks and need to return to our aesthetic life in Loreto to deflate. We've spent way too much dinero; it is easy to do in the States. My first trip to the grocery store left me aghast at the price of a loaf of bread, the "good" bread--over $4.00 a loaf. I bought five assorted pastry items at a bakery in Coronado that set me back 14 bucks. And that was after $7.50 a single scoop ice cream cone earlier in the stroll.

We pulled Airstream Abby out of storage. (We'd left her in Phoenix, but our friend borrowed her and stored her nearby.) We've stayed at San Elijo State Park when a site was available and at Campland when San Elijo was full, which is nearly always. Campland in Mission Bay is the Wally World of campsites, a full service operation which adds to comfort, but the atmosphere is amusement park-like. One week was enough. Since we can't get continuous time at San Elijo we'll now be roughing it at a RV park next to the Del Mar racetrack--meaning there is no Internet, cable, or showers.

The San Elijo campground is in Cardiff-by-the-Sea, a little hamlet called along the ocean north of Del Mar with iconic eateries and cute hang-outs. We had breakfast one morning at Pipes, the favorite of surfer dudes. I love to haunt the Seaside Market, a super-cute grocery with eye-popping produce. The campground is booked solid through October. Easy to understand why--a prime location oceanside. It's also surfer central. There is even a surf school on site. At the crossroads of Highway 101 and Chesterfield Drive sits a bronze sculpture of a surfer. He's supposed to represent the heart of Cardiff surf culture, but he's been met with a lot of playful ribbing by residents who've nicknamed him "The Kook," and dress him regularly in goofy attire.

We've been hanging with our good friend, David, who lives in Cardiff, and my cousin who is in Carlsbad. She had us all over for Easter Sunday, Italian-style. She's a W.A.S.P like me, but married an Italian, learned to cook mouth-watering lasagna and command, "Manga!" My mother drove up from Mesa, AZ with a good friend for several days. The days and their events have become blurred--we've packed in so much. I intend to pack in a lot more in the week left to us.


Anonymous said...

It is wonderful that YOU get to go on all these adventures and live your fantasy life. However, is this child ever going to get the proper education she deserves and to have a real childhood? I think she will resent you later in years when she realizes what she has really missed as a kid and that you were only thinking of YOURSELF and not being the parent she is entitled to at this time in her life!

kelli said...

To Anonymous,

How is a "proper education" superior to what our daughter is receiving through her experiences with us? She has traveled through the U.S seeing every museum, cultural, and educational sight along the way. She is quickly becoming bi-lingual. She has private tutors along with her school-time in Mexico. She reads extensively and composes and illustrates beautiful stories.

She gets to live in the real world outside of a classroom setting for good portions of the year. Everyone who knows her comments on her maturity and intelligence and compassion.

Our travelling days won't last forever: someday she may be in a "proper school" What's the rush when we can give her such a solid foundation? What exactly is she missing?