Los Angeles, to be precise. We cashed in a bunch of frequent flyer miles a few months ago to take what is basically a free long weekend visiting some really good friends in L.A. and also to escape the horrible Minnesota weather of the past couple of weeks (tons of snowfall and total lack of greenery). We left on Thursday, all rather stressful on account of a great big snowstorm. Our inbound plane actually made it on time from Boston but we had to wait an extra hour for the crew to come in, then sat on the plane for an hour while the air conditioning failed, then had to wait in the airport for another hour for a new plane, then finally a four hour journey to L.A. Toby was completely great though – very patient with everything – it could have been a lot worse. We didn’t make it to D and J’s till really late on account of having to get the rental car and find our bearings but we did make it in the end.

Yesterday we went to the Los Angeles Zoo, which was a lot of fun. It’s not huge, but there are lots of neat animals to see and it was really good for us to get so much air and exercise after the journey. Just smelling fresh trees and flowers after the long Minnesota winter is so good for us. We did get a little lost on the freeway on the way to the zoo but fortunately I’d gotten a satelite navigation system as part of the car rental thing, so that helped in a huge way otherwise we might still be somewhere in L.A, or maybe even in Mexico by now.

Today we had a great outing with D and J, all the way down Santa Monica Boulevard (they live in West Hollywood right on the intersection of Sunset Boulevard and Santa Monica so it was a straight shot down) to the Santa Monica pier where we saw the ocean, listened to buskers and took Toby on a bunch of fairground rides and some time on the beach. We had quite the tour on the way back, along Mulholland Drive which is the steepest, twistiest road I have been on in some time, plus a lot of it is right on the edge of very steep hills, so I had no time at all to look at scenery, it was quite an exciting drive. Totally mad enormous houses all the way along, and incredible cars too – I’ve never seen so many Bentleys, Aston Martins, Ferraris etc.

Toby’s been doing great, he is a good traveler pretty much all the time, and he’s really taken to D and J and their dog Bacchus. Apart from the sunshine and the sightseeing he has also been appreciating our hosts’ very large TV and DVD setup, so got to watch Cars (again), and was completely made up that Route 66 ends just a block away from where we are staying (click on the image to enlarge):

Route 66

2 Responses to “california”

  1. Robin (bro) says:

    Wow, it all sounds great. Also, Bacchus is a great name for a dog.

  2. And your journey down Santa Monica Boulevard to the Pier followed 66′s last legs west. Toby is a lucky little guy!

    While you are in town (if you are still in town!), you should consider a trek along the Arroyo Seco Parkway (Pasadena Freeway), the first stretch of 66 to become freeway, and then head east to Monrovia to visit the famed Aztec Hotel. The Aztec is probably the crown jewel of 66 in LA County, and one of the more well-known motels on 66.

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