It's Thanksgiving week and my escapism complex really starts to kick in.
Where to go? Where to go?
I really need to finish Lyrinian Blade (The Chronicles of Koa #2) and life and stress has really shoved its way into my creative path. I need to get away! First, I thought of going to Maine.
Why not? Great scenery, it's quiet, I won't be bothered, and the deals for nice bed and breakfasts are abundant. Then, I realize that it's freaking cold there and I stand the chance of getting snowed in. Next! Hmmm...New York sounds tempting. Flights are cheap, there's tons to do, and I can quite possibly catch the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade! Yes, flights are cheap...hotels...not so much!
What's this? An email from Jetsetter.com advertising great deals for sunny, always perfect weather, San Diego. I never thought about going there before. Let's do it! I skipped on the deal for the Omni in the Gas Lamp District, even though it was a pretty sweet deal and centrally located. No, my friends, I am clever traveler, with a few tricks up my sleeve.
So, the Omni is a 4 star hotel with great reviews, and was on sale for $85 a night. Alas, I did my research on Hotwire.com and Priceline.com and found a deal for a 4 star hotel, on the bay, with a 95% positive review rating, for $54 a night. I took a chance and took the deal without knowing the name of the hotel. To my surprise, it was the awesome, amazing, Manchester Grand Hyatt! Woohoo! We're off to San Diego, and traveling in style! I packed my lucky Jessica Simpson suitcase and grabbed my Betsey Johnson lap top bag, and said adios to chilly Charlotte. My flight was pleasant. I did have to make a quick stop in Utah, and was delighted by its excellent views.
Whew. It's hot!
I immediately took off my cardigan and hailed a cab. My lovely, Persian, cabby took me directly to my hotel, and viola...Super-Star-Status. My door was opened by a handsome man in uniform and a fedora. He took my bags out of the trunk and said, "Welcome to the Manchester Grand Hyatt, Miss Cooper."
Whoa. What just happened? How did he know my name? Were they expecting me?
Oh. Wait. My real name's written on my luggage.
Anyway, I walk in and am stunned by the beauty of the massive lobby. I'm checked in and upgraded by the hottie named JC at the front desk. Already I know...this is going to be fun!
Once I head up the sea side tower to my room on the 25th floor, I am thrilled to find my room is so spacious and nice. All for me! Yippee! I anticipate lots of "writing" getting done. No, no, I'm not here to fool around downtown and act all touristy. No way.
What did I do next? Set up my lap top, all nice and pretty on the glass desk...and...run straight outside to join the other hordes of tourists! Hey, Lyrinian Blade can wait until tomorrow, right?
Okay, okay, I assure you, I did get tons of writing done, but I'm also a travel blogger, and I needed cool experiences to write about! So, I ate many lovely meals on the bay, with views of boats and dolphins playing.
I explored the Gas Lap Quarter where I met two lovely ladies who became my new best friends (all because of my pink tights and my lovely Betsey Johnson handbag in which we bonded over.)
I made a fan out of a pedi-cab rider named Paul, who gave me a free ride in exchange for a signed copy of The Chronicles of Koa.
I explored the San Diego Zoo, and realized that I'm a lazy girl, when I didn't feel like waiting in line for 45 minutes to see the giant pandas. What's wrong with me!? I just kept thinking...I can google a panda image right now. Haha.
Balboa Park was incredible. I wish I had more time to explore it.
The museum had a few amazing exhibits.
I met another pedi-cab rider named Melad from Lebanon (cutie) who offered to take me around San Diego and show me the sights, for free. Too bad I didn't take him up on his offer. But it was a nice gesture. Guess who's popular with the pedi-cab guys!
I took a ferry to Coronado. Hmmm...not much to see here. Although, I did hear much about Hotel Coronado, which I didn't get a chance to see. Next time! And La Jolla! I must see that next time as well.
I went to a bar and played trivia with a French-Canadian, a guy that looked like Michael J. Fox, and got put into a cage with a rep from the other teams at the final round. We all went into the cage, unsure of what to expect, looked at each other thinking "what do we do? What's happening?" What did I say?
I looked around at everyone, raised my fist, and said, "Happy Hunger Games!" Haha. That sure broke the ice and everyone loved it and joined in. One girl even exclaimed that she volunteered as tribute. One epic moment.
When Tuesday rolled around, I noticed something a tad odd. The lobby and all of the common areas of my hotel were flooded by hundreds of people speaking Arabic. I never got the courage to ask exactly where they were from, because they looked at me as if I was pretty strange, but I did learn that there was a prince or something staying at my hotel, and they were there to see him and have a conference of some sort. Interesting! I never got to see this elusive prince though!
So, I arrived on Sunday and had to leave on Thursday (Thanksgiving Day.) And that's when the loneliness hit me full force. My flight didn't leave until 10:50 pm, so I went to a restaurant and had Thanksgiving dinner all alone.
It wasn't so bad, honestly. Although I did notice that San Diego seems to be the land of the couple! Everyone was either with their families or their significant others. I was the only lone traveler in the land. Nonetheless, I had an excellent time, and I will return!