Day one – arrival in San Diego, California…. so exciting!

Landed around lunchtime on Tuesday 13th November having left Beijing at 6am on Tuesday 13th November… weird! Drama at Beijing – flight had changed, the new flight was way earlier, rushed out of Zak’s to find a cab waiting for us right outside. Pure luck – which left as swiftly as it had arrived – the check in staff would not let me board without a ticket out of the USA – $1400 later I’m on a plane seething as I am certain I don’t need it. Sure as eggs, arrive in Detroit to pass through Customs and no, I didn’t need it… to cut a long story short I did get a refund but not without four or five phone calls lasting on average 30 minutes! Quick to take it off you, not so fast to return.

Anyway, found my way to National Car Rentals to collect my Toyota Yaris (are you ready for this little car?) and I m driving on the wrong side of the road through a large American city. Entertaining to say the least and I am still not entirely sure who has right of way at a crossroads with a stop sign on each road… it appears to be whoever has the balls to go first gets there first! Made it to my pre-booked motel after an un-planned hour long tour of the city (I just kept turning right, it was easier), breathed deeply, took a shower and headed for Coronado Island. By taxi (weak of me but I was a little too jet-lagged and fuzzy to face more driving just yet). Straight to the Hotel Del Coronado, beautiful! So well kept, magnificent carved wooden lobby with massive chandelier. Apparently it was built in just 11 months, it overlooks the beach, is haunted by Marilyn Monroe, and is generally splendid and well beyond my budget!

Hotel Del Coronado

Walked a mile or so along the sand in the afternoon sunshine, paddling in the opposite side of the Pacific, watching Navy helicopters flying overhead every ten minutes or so, admiring super-sized seagulls and sparkly bits in the greyish sand, no idea what that was all about. Definitely bigger seagulls here though. Lot’s of families with children in the waters edge, joggers, couple of guys building elaborate sandcastles.

Coronado Beach at low tide looking south to Mexico in the distance

As the sun started setting (into the ocean, another novelty for a Queenslander), I made my way past some extremely expensive looking houses along the esplanade back to the hotel for a glass of fine Napa Valley red and complete enjoyment of said sunset, then went looking for dinner.

Sunset at the Del

Which was about as American as I could get – beer and burger and fries… and what a delicious burger it was. The lovely young staff gave me freebies to try when they found out it was my first night in the USA… and it was all delicious! Go to Australia Burger Lounge, you are SO better than Macca’s.

Mother on the beachfront at Coronado Island – pretty chuffed at being in AMERICA!

What a lovely introduction to the States. Everyone I met and spoke to was delightful – friendly, welcoming, and helpful. Think I’m going to like it here. San Diego seems to have a similar climate to the Sunny Coast, it was cool overnight but hot and sunny during the day. Population of three million apparently but spread out. Lots of water and boats and military personnel. Real estate values rising and unemployment dropping according to my taxi driver, who came from Minnesota and said he drove all over the States to find a place he wanted to live in before he found San Diego. However, the road calls and I’m off to Las Vegas tomorrow… after a twelve hour coma that is.

2 thoughts on “AMERICA!

  1. Bekk, love the blog. I liked San Diego when I worked there a few times, nice feel about the place and great zoo! Can’t wait to see you the week after next. xx

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