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07 May 2021

Laguna Beach, CA (2021)

Given that Laguna Beach is Allyn's old stomping grounds, we didn't really want or need to do much sightseeing. We had pals to visit and have been looking forward to our stay at Montage Laguna Beach.
We were not disappointed whatsoever.
The hotel elegance and view were apparent as soon as we walked in.
The room was lovely and its view even better. 
You won't find friendlier employees. When I left the pool, the attendant asked if I had a pleasant afternoon.
Here is a first for me. At breakfast, it was a bit overcasty and just a bit chilly. They had the heat lights on just a hair to slightly warm up the area. Nice touch. Great hotel.
Dinner was at Selanne Steak Tavern, a fine restaurant just down the highway a mile. It turns out it is the location that used to house French 75. That was quite a special treat for Allyn as she has quite fond memories of it since she used to take her elderly mom to dinner there weekly.
 








06 May 2021

Del Mar, (San Diego) CA (2021)

Del Mar is a quaint seaside village located 20 miles up the coast from San Diego. We stayed at the lovely L'Auberge Del Mar although did our touring in San Diego.
Old Town is the location of the first European settlement in California. It is the oldest neighborhood in San Diego. It is worth a visit. However the must do sightseeing in San Diego is the waterfront. 
The Star of India is the world's oldest active sailing ship, and has circled the world 21 times since launching in 1863.
The USS Midway was the United States' longest serving aircraft carrier last century.
B-39 (rear) is one of a fleet of Soviet diesel electric submarines. It served on active duty for more than 20 years starting in the 70s.
The 25 foot Kissing Sailor Statue was designed after the famous photo taken in Times Square from World War II. It is our favorite sight so far this trip.
The Hotel Del Coronado has been the most famous San Diego hotel since it was build in 1888. It is on an island which has lovely tiny well kept homes the size of my bedroom that go for seven figures.
Oh, and by the way, it is possible to be on the road, have a deluxe breakfast, and for it to be healthy.
 








04 May 2021

Palm Springs (2021)

For years as a young boy I had heard of Palm Springs as a place where the rich and famous hung out. Whereas monied folks from New York tended to go to Florida in the winter, Seattle people being from the West tended to vacation in Palm Springs. Some of the real wealthy even had second homes there.
Still known as a retirement area for old rich people, it seems much younger now.
I was excited to get back to Palm Springs after about 50 years. We had vacationed there a couple of times when the Washington Huskies went to the Rose Bowl and my folks took me to the game and we stayed at Palm Springs for several days..
Driving into town, we were met by hundreds of windmills. The wind industry has been around since the 80s in Palm Springs and there are about 2,000 turbines currently. One of the big turbines alone can power 1,500 SoCal homes.
Wind is one of the cheapest forms of energy and provides over 100,000 jobs nationally.
Lunch was at Daily Grill in Palm Desert. We recommend it highly. It was a great treat breaking bread with an old, close, friend, Mike Brotman. It had been years.
Dinner was more upscale, yet still very casual at Pomme Frite. They are known for their muscles which come with a choice of eight preparations.
We stayed with cruise friends, Robyn and Perry at their lovely Palm Springs winter home. 
 
 








02 May 2021

Las Vegas - Big Bear Lake (2021)

Day 1 of our road trip took us from Las Vegas to Big Bear Lake. One fun thing about road trips is that there is no time panic to get to the airport for example.
Another is to make some fun, and often ridiculous, tourist stops. 
So our very first stop was in Baker, CA at The World's Tallest Thermometer. I mean it doesn't get too much more touristy than that. Note it was over 100 degrees even though we still were in April. It is located at the edge of Death Valley and in the summer can top 130 degrees.
Lunch was at Peggy Sue's 50's Diner, a wellknown spot roughly midway between Las Vegas and Los Angeles. The place is more unique than the food. It is full of memorabilia and funky stuff.
This guy lives in the lady's room.
Calico was a mining town active from 1881 till abandoned in the mid-1890s after silver lost its value. Walter Knott (Owner of Knott's Berry Farm) purchased Calico in the 1950’s architecturally restoring most of the original buildings to look as they did in the 1880’s. 
The fire truck is circa 1888.
There is  much fun stuff here.
After climbing around and around for many miles and 7,000 feet we finally arrived Big Bear. Allyn had fond memories from being a kid and visiting in the winter when it is snow covered. To me it was no big deal and kind of a pain getting up and down.
Dinner at Oakside Restaurant and Bar was quite nice however.
 
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01 May 2021

89 Day Road Trip (2021)

We are so excited to start our 2021 road trip. Here is the game plan. Note, from here on out we will probably be doing more video since Allyn has really been working on her video skills and me on my movie making.