1st anniversary weekend

to celebrate our first wedding anniversary, jared and i decided to take a trip to san diego.  we chose san diego for several reasons.  #1) we had $300 american airlines vouchers from when we gave up our seats for our honeymoon last year, and the only direct flight for <$300 from denver on american airlines was to los angeles.  #2) we wanted to go somewhere warm and we have good friends in san diego.

it was a good decision.  however, it turns out that jared and i cannot travel anywhere without scores of drama related to the trip.  like when we went to napa for a friends wedding and experienced the following:
*a flat tire
*a broken GPS which resulted in calling the hotel for directions from san francisco and trying to get there in rush hour
*a fall that led to a *very* swollen and sprained ankle
*a cell phone left in the rental car on the way home

although so many things went wrong, that trip to napa was very fun and we had a blast!

this trip was similar.
it started out thursday night.  our flight was at 7:30.  jared got home from work and we left to take the dogs to our friends around 4:45.  then we had to drop off jareds homework assignment and we headed to the airport around 5:30.  we hit very heavy traffic and when we got to the parking lot, we were in a hurry to get on the shuttle.  i left my phone in the car and they had to send another shuttle to bring it to me.  by the time i get my phone, we had about 1 hour until our flight left.  we head to security, but that security checkpoint is closed.  we have to go to the one clear on the other side of the airport, which of course has a long line.  it takes us 35 minutes to get through security.  we rush to the gate and have a few minutes to spare before they start boarding.  phew.

right before take off, i turn to jared and ask “you locked the door, right?”.  he couldn’t answer me.. normally, i would have just assumed that everything was fine, but for SOME REASON i decided to text my friend stacey who lives close to us and have her go double check.  we were taking off, but i had this urge to text her right then and not when we got to LA.   once we landed, i had a text from her “call me when you land, it’s important”.

i called her and found out that our front door was WIDE OPEN.  apparently, in the rush to get out of the house and round the dogs up into the car, jared had forgotten to go back and SHUT THE DOOR.  i had a pit in my stomach as i asked her if everything had looked ok.  to my relief, she said that it didn’t look like we had been robbed and she turned on a light and deadbolted the door for us.  thank god for friends like her.

after landing in LA and going through a seemingly endless amount of shuttles, we finally get to the rental car place.   then after missing a turn and driving through south central LA, we finally get to our hotel, which was paid for with hotel points.  it was nice and we crashed.

the next day was fairly uneventful, disaster wise.  we enjoyed a nice drive down the pacific coast highway, chilled on a beach for an hour or so, and finally made it down to our friends house in san diego.

saturday, our friends took us sightseeing in la jolla.  we were at the la jolla cove, walking on the rocks and looking at the tide pools.   my first mistake was that i was wearing my chucks, which don’t have a lot of traction, so even though i was being super careful, i stepped on a slimy patch on the rock and lost my balance.  everything went into slow motion.  my butt hit the rock and i thought i was safe.. but then i slowly slid backwards into the tide pool.  i knew it was coming and there was nothing i could do except moan “nooooooooo!” as i was going in.    this was quite entertaining for jared and my friends, as you can imagine.  i got up, soaking wet, and had no choice but to see the humor in the situation and laugh with everyone else.

saturday night we checked into our super fancy hotel (our splurge because the rest of the trip was so cheap).  it didn’t disappoint.  if you are ever in san diego and want to drop $300 a night on a hotel, i highly recommend the Hotel Solamar in the gaslamp district. we got one of the spa rooms and it was amazing.  for dinner we decided that we wanted to take advantage of being near the water and nothing sounded better than a big bucket of crab legs.   the hotel clerk recommend this place called the crab hut, about 6 blocks from our hotel.  while walking there, my sandals that i hadn’t properly broken in yet for the summer, start cutting me so bad that i can barely walk.  i had to stop in the cvs and buy the only pair of flip flops that didn’t rub on the cuts – and they were men’s.  we get to the crab hut, but we can’t get in, because there has been a shooting next door at the marriot and everything is taped off with crime scene tape. 

so we get directions to another seafood place, which is about 8 blocks in the opposite direction.  this place turns out to be more of a fast food fish place where everything is fried.  not really our idea of a nice romantic anniversary dinner.  we then remember that jared’s mom suggested a place called “Anthony’s Fish Grotto”, which is right on the water.  she raved about it and said it was the best seafood she’s ever had.  we look it up on google and it has a good rating, so we decide to check it out.  we should have paid more attention to the look the hotel front desk clerk gave us when we mentioned it. 

we drive to anthony’s and walk inside. the whole way there i was reading some of the reviews on yelp and it sounded like the atmosphere was not going to be quite what we were looking for.  it was going to be another blue parrot*.  when we’re going to our table, jared was focused on the great view of the water from the restaurant.  i was focused on the crowded, noisy dining room filled with tourists, families, and fried food – and the decor that hasn’t been updated since 1984.  we sit down, and look at the menu.  NOTHING looks good and the prices seem pretty expensive for atmosphere and type of food.  we order water and look at the menu some more.  i look up at jared with pleading eyes.. and i ask him if we can leave.  we hightail it out of there, even though by this time it’s 8pm and we are starving and tired.

we head back to our hotel and walk to this place we had noticed earlier.  it was called lou & mickey’s and it was a steakhouse/seafood place with a great atmosphere and prices similar to what we would have paid at anthony’s.   this ends up to be a very good decision.  we have a private table and are able to enjoy a very nice meal and good conversation, which is how a 1st anniversary dinner should be.

it is now sunday and i’m typing this while jared is still sleeping.  today is our last day – our flight is at 8:30 tonight.  we plan to spend the rest of the morning in san diego and then drive up to LA and check out hollywood and some tourist things before we leave.  hopefully it will be fun, but uneventful.. although knowing us, i’m sure something funny will happen that will give us another good story.. which is pretty much the way things always go with our relationship and marriage.  and i don’t think i’d have it any other way. 

*when jared and i first started dating, he would RAVE about this italian restaurant called the blue parrot.  he took me there on a date, and i was less than impressed.  the atmosphere was like a cafeteria in a nursing home and the food wasn’t that good (although it wasn’t horrible).  it was then when jared started understanding the importance of ambiance and atmosphere when dining out for a special occasion. 

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