If you’ve ever been on vacation without a GPS, you know the experience of getting lost. While on vacation in the San Diego area, I had that same experience… over, and over again. To top it off, my father with no sense of direction was my only form of transportation. Although my parents and I were mainly in the San Diego area, more specifically La Jolla, for my cousin’s wedding, we decided to do something other than sit around this urban, tropical paradise.
We began messing up plans well before we even got to the airport. Four days before the wedding, the day after we were supposed to fly in, my dad and myself planned on visiting Disneyland in Anaheim, which is about an hour and a half drive from San Diego. I assumed my dad had bought us plane tickets to LAX or some other airport in Los Angeles, to save us driving to and from Anaheim. Alas, I was mistaken. For reasons only my father can seem to fathom, he had booked us tickets to and from the San Diego Airport. That’s an extra hour of driving added.
After the drive up to Disneyland, getting lost on the way, we parked in one of the designated parking lots, ready to begin our day of fun, only to find we had to walk another fifteen minutes through Downtown Disney. Utilizing fastpasses and knowledge of the park map from previous visits to the park, line waits were relatively minimalistic. I realize now that the majority of Disneyland is aimed towards the younger kids and older adults. Those three churros I ate were the highlights of that day.
After a night’s stay in a rundown Day’s Inn near Disney, and a bite to eat at the local IHOP, we were on the road again. Maybe a half hour away from La Jolla, which was where the Residence Inn that we were staying at was, my sense-of-direction-deprived dad and I stopped at a vista point on the side of I-5. As soon as I hopped out of the rental van, ready to stretch my cramped legs, I noticed these cute little squirrels next to the viewpoint ledge. I walked a little bit closer to get a better look, when the squirrel suddenly ran up to me, about three or four feet away from me. I have never gotten so close to a squirrel before that moment.
Once we drove into La Jolla, we began searching for the Residence Inn that we’d be staying at for the next three nights. At first we got lost, taking the wrong exit, but we eventually found ourselves outside the main office of the hotel. We couldn’t check in until later in the day so we decided to lose ourselves in the town until we found somewhere to eat. We ended up stumbling upon a shopping area, where we ate, walked around a bit, got lost getting back to our car, and dawdled around until later that night when my mom was supposed to arrive at the airport.
Saturday morning, I went to the San Diego Zoo with my uncle and grandfather, who were also there for the wedding. They had a GPS in their car, and we didn’t get lost once. That night, at the Johnson House next to the Scripps Institute of Oceanography, my cousin Sam and his then fiancÃ© were wed above the cliffs overlooking the beautiful La Jolla Cove Beach. After the reception, we got lost on the way back to the hotel.
Next time, we should get the GPS.
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