Thursday, July 18, 2013

San Diego vacation recap

I did not wear a sombrero on my vacation, but I did eat Mexican food.
Just got back from a few days vacationing in San Diego, my old hometown. I try not to focus too much on SD-centric stuff or non-baseball "live journal" personal stuff here on the blog, but you'll have to indulge me from time to time. So yeah, just a heads up that this here is not really a baseball card post, so feel free to browse elsewhere if you don't care.. I wouldn't blame you. We'll return to breaking down cards shortly.

Something to listen to. Rocket From The Crypt is my favorite San Diego band.

Anyways, I lived all my life in San Diego County until moving up to Portland a few years ago. My fiancée's family planned to converge in San Diego for their annual family reunion. Sensing a great opportunity for our families to become more familiar with each other, I suggested to my family to have our annual meeting also in San Diego around the same time. The idea took off, and a few months later, there we all were.

Our first night was in La Jolla. That's a pretty fancy (expensive) part of town near the beach. It was Friday afternoon, so driving and parking was crazy, but the lady and I eventually got to the hotel. We had a nice snack and sampled some excellent beers during happy hour at Karl Strauss, just a few blocks' walk from the hotel (We are both fans of quality beer.)

Then it was off to my aunt's house for a dinner with the family. She just recently moved into a sweet-ass house with her boyfriend. To get into the house, you walk over a bridge over a pool. Sweet-ass. Huge place with a great view.

That's the bridge on the left.
So that was really nice. Great to see my mom again, as well as the rest of the extended family. The little kids put on a show and made cookies.

Then Saturday we headed over to a place my girl's family was renting in Mission Beach. It was a nice place just a block from the beach. That evening my family met up for dinner at a fancy pasta place called Piatti. Again, parking was tricky, as weekends on the coast are pretty packed. But yeah, in the end, that was a nice time.

Give me a crayon and a paper tablecloth, and I will draw something like this.
Sunday, I got together with a few old friends from high school and our significant others, plus the son of one of my friends (who is now almost 18.. I remember when he was born.. wow, that'll make you feel old). Great to see the fellas again and catch up. We played 18 holes of miniature golf in Del Mar, then-- after a long wait to be seated since it was so crowded-- had a nice lunch at a place called Milton's. Good times.

Then we had to say our goodbyes and race to my family partnership meeting that was scheduled for 3pm. But luckily the rest of the family was late too, so no harm done. After that, my family and my fiancée's family all got together at a pizza place called Fillipi's (I don't know why I'm hyperlinking these restaurants.. I guess just in case anyone is interested in checking out the menu or something.) In total, there were 25 in our party, I think, spread out over 3 tables near the back of the restaurant. It's always hard to get a good "mingling environment" for so many people in a dinning situation like that, but I think it went pretty well. Luckily, both our families are good people and easy to get along with.

After the big dinner, we said our farewells to my side of the family. Monday was spent with Beth's side. About half our group went to Stone Brewing Company in Escondido for a tasty lunch and entertaining tour of the brewery.

Four people crammed into the backseat meant for 3 on a hot summer day for 45 minutes was not the best experience, but once we got there, the trip was very much worth it. I definitely recommend the tour to anyone finding themselves in northern SD who appreciates craft beer (if your speed is more of Coors/Bud/Miller, you might be offended). My future mother-in-law even bought us nice hoodies from the gift shop as a souvenir for our visit.

Then Tuesday, we all had a nice Mexican food lunch at Coyote Cafe in Old Town, then off to the airport for our flight home.

I should note that there were a few "hanging out on the beach" times mixed in, as well as plenty of beer and fine wine in the evenings. Good times, for sure. While I lived in San Diego County for most of my life, I grew up in the East County and I didn't make it out to the beach areas that much. So it was a weird mix of being a trip to someplace I hadn't really been to before, and a homecoming. It was great to see my family again, to get better acquainted with my fiancée's extended family, and to see some old friends again. I'm happy to say I didn't get sunburned and only puked one night. Go me!

I did not go surfing on my vacation, but I did walk in the ocean a bit.
It was a very fun few days. And I even got to kinda watch some baseball! (I don't get TV service back home, so this is a rarity for me.) I caught a bit of the Home Run Derby, then most of the Celebrity/Legends Softball Game (which I was more interested in than the All-Star game itself). Great to see Rickey Henderson and those other old timers kinda back in action. It's funny when someone asks me if I'm a baseball fan, and I kinda have to give a hesitant "....yyyyeeeah..(?)" While I obviously love the game enough to start a blog about baseball cards, my interest is focused squarely on the past. I consider myself a Padres fan, and I've read the names of some of their current players, but honestly I don't think I could pick a single one of those guys out of a lineup. Ever since I moved away and Adrian Gonzalez got traded, to me they've become a faceless group of cellar dwellers. One of these days I'll chronicle my fall from fandom, but that's a post for another day. For what it's worth, I looked into catching a game at Petco Park while I was in town, but nothing fit into my schedule.
I did not lie in a hammock on my vacation, but I did play a little guitar.
But anyways, thanks to my family, to-be in-law family, and my old friends for making it such an incredible trip for me and my girl. It was a lot of fun, though I'm happy to be back in Portland with my dog and own comfy bed. It could be a long time till I'm back in San Diego, but it'll pretty much always be home to me.


  1. Grew up in Poway and didn't make it to the beach a whole lot either, except for my senior year when school became less important and cars became more accessible. There are a lot of sweet ass houses in SD, unfortunately I will never own one.

    When I was in high school, Unwritten Law was my favorite SD band, but now I have to go with pretty much anything John Reis does (RFTC is the most known, but his stuff with Sultans is actually my favorite. The Night Marchers are pretty awesome as well).

    Sounds like a great trip!

    1. Cool, I love the first Sultans EP. Also a big Hot Snakes fan.

    2. Hot Snakes are awesome as well, Auto Midnight rips. Saw them in 2011 when they played Fun Fun Fun Fest in Austin. Them and Spoon were the highlights of the night.

  2. How do I not have that Eric Show card!?!?

    Born and raised is San Diego. Still here. Grew up with Scott Russo from Unwritten Law and Adam (Atom) Willard - Drummer from RFTC. We all played on the same soccer team, in fact.

    Big thanks to Padrographs for steering me your way!