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Published: April 11th 2018
With our room darkening shades over the single window that provides a view to the outside world, we know little of what's going on. I do know, however, that the ship is no longer moving and I can hear the aft access door directly below us opening. Using my tremendous brain power, I have determined that we are are in port at San Diego, the end of our journey. We'll, not quite. We have one more excursion on our list, a view of the "Lifestyles of the Rich & Famous in San Diego", presented by Scarlett & Jonathan, daughter and grandson. This should prove to be exciting, entertaining, different, expensive and perhaps a bit dangerous. Anyway, our day starts out very typical of the past three weeks. Thanks to the crew working below us, we're up at 7 am. Peering out the window, I can see a long reach forklift directly below us, its forks reaching into the hold and pulling materials off the ship. Unlike years past, all garbage created during our 15 day passage must be offloaded at some port along the way. Glass, paper, cardboard, plastic and organic waste is sorted and compacted during our journey and unloaded
at one or more ports along the way. This could be what's going on now. With our checked luggage already gone, we only have the clothes we're wearing today and some personal items so we're out of the room within the hour. The crew knocking on the door three separate times wanting to know how much longer before we'll be leaving helped with motivation.
We take our backpacks with us to the Lido for breakfast. It's crowded with people and luggage so we start with coffee and let the lines die down. Then, with perfect timing, Mom grabs some eggs, a sausage and some fruit for both of us. After breakfast we retreat to the Deck 1 where we find an abundance of chairs to wait for 10 am. Our "yellow 1" tags allow us to exit anytime between 8:40 and 10:00 but Scarlett is expecting us to meet her around 10:15 outside at the passenger pickup area so there's no need to rush. At least I don't think so but Karen is bugging me again. "We need to hurry. Let's go. It's time." Not, it's 9:30 and we'll just stand in line with hundreds of other people. She
just keeps repeating, "Now? Now? Now?" I can't take it any more so we just get our shipcard scanned for the last time and exit the ship.
Exiting the ship, we move onto the gangway where we encounter a line. No way. We take baby steps all the way into the port building where we gather our four bags and enter the immigration & customs line. Then it's outside to the passenger pickup area for a call to Queenie. She's 15 minutes out and knows right where we're at. OK. Soon she calls back asking us where we're at. We give her the information and she arrives soon after along with Jonathan.
We load our luggage and start the today's tour. Around through downtown San Diego, by Old Town, into the area where the bums live ( we didn't expect this aspect of the tour), the marina, Queenie's old house and store, (more bums) and finally the long way to her house where she points out all the expensive homes. We even stop at an open house sale and walk through a home strictly for senior living. Finally we arrive at her house and check it out. It's
very nice but we must leave for lunch. Off we go to Del Mar for a lunch at the "secret place" that they go, a little house off the beaten path that serves breakfast and lunch called the Stratford Court Cafe.
First, I must comment on our driver. While Queenie seems to have command over her vehicle, it appears she doesn't always monitor her surroundings. She will pull up to a stop sign, waiting for the sign to change. At a signal, there is often a 7-10 second delay for our departure on the green light while she checks her phone or finishes some narration. Cars in our vicinity should take heed and use descretion because of possible sudden lane changes and it seems here in San Diego one must always have either the gas or the brake pedal activated at all times. These are my observations from the back seat.
After lunch, we are taken to the Good Guys car show at the Del Mar Fair Grounds. Apparently, our tour included free admission as Queenie shoots through the pay gates without paying. This is exciting! Pulling to the side, we watch the cars doing burn-outs as they
exit the show. Mom watches from her seat in the car. We roll back to her house with Jonathan acting as narrator. Here everyone takes a break for awhile but here's more. We have a dinner date tonight at 7pm at Shogun Kobe Restaurant.
The four of us meet Chris, who is Scarlett's son, and his girlfriend, Jessica. We haven't seen them for years and we had a nice visit at dinner. I especially enjoyed the free food I received from Jonathan, the salad, rice and fruity drink. I always enjoy a discounted meal. We return home around 9 and it's not long before everyone is off to bed. Our flight home tomorrow is at 12:45pm. Scarlett was nice enough to allow us to stay in her bedroom, home to the $10,000 bed. It's very comfortable and soon I'm in dreamland.
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