On the Road!

Last weekend, Carolyn and I drove down to Chula Vista (about 10 miles south of San Diego) for her internship at the Olympic Training Center (OTC). She is going to be working with the sports medicine team for the US athletes prepping for the Olympics in BMX Biking, Field Hockey, Track & Field, and … I always forget one… Anyway, it is very exciting, and I’m proud of her.

I played the big sister role – heading down to be a second driver, to help carry heavy things, and deal with any minor crisis that arrive when moving. And, let me say, after having my major moves be across the country and via plane, moving via car is much more civilized.

Here is a little photographic story about our trip:

7:30am: Carolyn and all her stuff, and the lovely little red car that carried us down the coast.

9AM – We hit the road after filling the car with gas, and us with caffeine.

I drove first, and as we listened to the Sklar Brothers great comedy record Hendersons and Daughters, we went past a TON of CHP and one Weiner-mobile – much to Carolyn’s delight:

Erin, you don’t understand. It’s a Weiner and mo-BILE. – Carolyn, (possible inaccurately quoted, =P )

Eventually she fell asleep, and I switched over to the audiobook for Mary Roach’s Stiff. After about three hours of driving (and still being a relatively inexperienced driver, especially at long-distances), I had to get out and walk around. We stopped and the rest stop had the above interesting machinery.

Carolyn took over driving, and I slept until the must-have stop at In-N-Out. Then we drove on through the Grapevine, seeing some lovely vistas like the above. Anthony Bourdain’s excellent memoir Kitchen Confidentiall kept us entertained and slightly disgusted until we hit Anaheim and started listening to the very exciting 49er v. Saints playoff game.

The closer we got to Chula Vista the more intense the game got, and each time Carolyn got frustrated with the proceedings she would turn the radio off, which I found hysterical.

5:15pm – We were just pulling into Chula Vista as the crazy last few minutes of the game went down. So exciting!! Go Niners!

All in all, it was a very pleasant drive and we the whole drive took about 8 hours, which was great.

After we rested and got cleaned up some, we met our cousin Darcy for dinner in San Diego. (As long as there is no traffic, it seems like everything is 14 minutes away between San Diego/Chula Vista/Coronado). We went to the R Gang Eatery, and had a ton of delicious food including Brussels sprouts and the bone marrow & beef cheeks dish above. While eating, Darcy entertained us with hilarious stories of her life as an office temp and nanny as she studies for the MCAT.

Sunday, 11AM – After dinner we went back to the motel and collapsed. In the morning, we checked out and headed to San Diego for brunch. And I, apparently, dressed in every pattern I owned….

Brunch was at the Mission, as recommended by my old friend Deirdre. It was very good, and way, way too much food. I think Carolyn’s french toast could’ve fed three people.

12:30pm – We did our major site-seeing at Coronado, on the beach and at the Hotel del Coronado. A beautiful and awesome place that I would love to spend more time at.

Coronado - Carolyn let me take a million photos of her. This was one of my favorites.

Grass on the Beach at Coronado

One of the turrets of the gorgeous hotel – a National landmark, and one of the few all-wood hotels still in existence from the period.

Hotel del Coronado - Dr. Seuss Sculpture Garden

The Dragon Tree at the Hotel del Coronado

After wandering around the Hotel, we headed back to the beach. As Syche and I recently talked about, rocks-in-water are my favorite thing in nature, followed by clouds. This beach did not disappoint, and provided many a lovely vista.

One couple took advantage of the vista for a lovely and simple wedding on the rocks.

1:30pm – Carolyn and I leave the beach, and head to the final destination – the OTC!

As Carolyn checked in, I perused the magazine selection

2:30pm – After checking in, Carolyn calls our Mom to report on the trip thus far.

3:30pm – After we began to move her in, we shortly realized we needed more containers. Off to Walmart! Just as if our dad was with us, we loaded the carts with various bins and many more hangers.

Carolyn in front of the main OTC sign

Vista of the OTC

5:15pm – We finished her move in and rushed off the San Diego airport. I said good-bye, wishing I could stay longer, but very excited for all Carolyn would be doing the next five months.

6:30pm – I sat in the airport and jotted off a couple quick postcards.

9:15pm – Back home! And planning the next adventure.

It was a great, if quick, trip. Can’t wait for when I can return to San Diego for a longer trip.

More photos from the trip are on my Flickr page and please check out my daily photoblog, RinFocus.

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