Honey, the Ocean is on the Wrong Side

SD  056SD  008After having spent three and a half months crossing this big continent, we’ve finally arrived at our winter destination, San Diego, California. And will stay here for a couple of months.  To think that just last year around this time we were in Fort Lauderdale, Everglades National Park and Key West,  Florida. SD  050


SD  005And having started our westward journey at the northern end of Nova Scotia, it’s really exciting to have reached the opposite side of the U.S.  And we’re so happy to slow down the pace of travel, a welcome change after a lot of shorter stays in recent months.

I was fully prepared for cooler temperatures than we had in South Florida since San Diego’s latitude is close to that of Charleston, South Carolina, but the weather here has actually been warmer than normal for this time of year.  So we are very fortunate, especially in light of the awful weather that the rest of the country has experienced this winter.SD  094

SD  087Warmer days = happy tropical island girl.

And in our first couple of weeks, we’ve settled into the urban lifestyle.  We’ve strolled and biked along nearby beaches and their neighborhoods:  Pacific Beach, Mission Beach, Ocean Beach, and La Jolla.

The Ocean Beach neighborhood is a standout, parts of it frozen in time in the 60’s, with some rasta flavor added in.

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SD  034At La Jolla, we spent a long time just looking at some adorable seals.  SD  033

And were lucky to catch a glimpse of a mom nursing her new baby underwater.   The lady standing next to us, who seemed to be in the know, informed us that the baby was one day old.SD  032


These guys make lots of funny faces and cute poses.  We could watch them for hours!

SD  086And Pacific and Mission Beaches are just around the corner, so we’ve visited a few times. We watched some beginner and experienced surfers flowboarding at the Wave House, an artificial wave machine where you can watch the action up close.SD  002

And every morning and evening we walk Angel by the shores of Mission Bay right by our RV park.  Angel is happy to be walking on soft grass and sand since some of those desert areas we visited recently were pretty rocky.SD  003SD  004

SD  043SD  045San Diego has lots of dog friendly parks by the water.  Angel visited Fiesta Island across the way from our campground, where doggies can go leashless.  And we went to the dog beach in Ocean Beach.  A really pretty place for dogs and humans.  Alas, the crab huntress found no crabs.SD  051SD  036SD  052SD  042SD  040SD  046SD  038SD  037SD  041

SD  081SD  077We also happened to catch the Chinese New Year Food & Cultural Fair.  It’s a small fair run by the San Diego Chinese Center, which serves as a cultural bridge between Chinese and non-Chinese communities.  The lion dances were especially fun and colorful.

SD  072San Diego also has lots of farmers markets, at least one every day of the week in various neighborhoods. We love farmers markets and visited four of them so far.SD  057

There are some small and some large ones and others that offer more arts and crafts than food.  Our two favorites so far are: the Ocean Beach (most funky) and the Hillcrest (most elaborate) markets.SD  065

And being food lovers, we couldn’t resist all the great ethnic food offerings and have found tasty and inexpensive Middle Eastern, East African, Vietnamese and Indian food, most at the farmers markets. And yes, we also sampled the famous In-N-Out burgers.

SD  092Oh, and Hector and I are taking some group swing dance lessons. We’d been taking ballroom dancing lessons two years ago before we left Denver but had to stop because of my foot surgeries.  So it’s fun to be back in the “swing” of things.

And the beautiful sunsets continue.SD  093

SD  006There is only one minor problem.  Hector, who has an excellent sense of direction, occasionally gets thrown off course because the ocean is on the “wrong” side.  Having lived most of our lives on the East coast, having the ocean on the west gets him turned around.  And I’m no help at all, since I’m directionally challenged no matter where I am.  But he’s getting used to it and becoming quite the California boy.  Could bleached blonde hair be next?SD  068

SD  007We’re having a fabulous time in San Diego.  This is an ideal spot to spend the winter.  Even though the ocean is on the wrong side.

~ Brenda

28 thoughts on “Honey, the Ocean is on the Wrong Side

  1. This sure looks like a wonderful place to stop… maybe even for more than a few months… I do love your photos Brenda, makes me feel as though I’m there with you…

    • Thank you, I love Hector’s photos too. He’s an aspiring professional photographer, and we’re working on setting up a new website for his photography. Of course, we’ll place a link to it once it’s completed.

  2. Fabulous! Every time I read post and see beautiful images of California, it gets me “sort” of homesick! Hector’s captures and your commentary makes it more enticing to head that way again. You are having too much fun in that awesome weather!

  3. Looks like you’re enjoying yourselves for sure. LOVE the photos of the seals. Isn’t it great how they seem to be smiling at you! Have you been to the Little Italy Farmer’s Market yet? It ended up as our favorite. Enjoy the rest of your time in SD 🙂

    • The seals are just too much, I just love them! Little Italy Farmers Market is on our list, one of the vendors from Hillcrest recommended it to us. btw, don’t know if you noticed, but on the last day at Quartzsite we finally gave in and bought the flagpole and flag for the ladder. We used our existing pole to extend it so the windsock flies way high. Check out the photo in the post.

    • 🙂 But you Canadians are so hearty! Me, not so much. After October of next year we are definitely sticking to the warmest states only: Arizona and southern California. This year we got caught up in some cold weather in November and December, but probably nothing like what you’re experiencing now. btw, if you get a chance check out the blog O’Canada (ocanadablog.com). Brett, who writes the blog, lives in Atlanta, Georgia but travels often to Canada and writes about your country. He just wrote a post about the cemetery at Annapolis Royal.

      • Thanks Brenda, I’ll check it out. My niece lives near Atlanta, and they have had a rough winter (for them). She’s a teacher, and I think she’s had more storm days off than the teacher’s have had here! We completely understand that they are not equipped to deal with winter. As for me, I’m completely ready for spring, but it doesn’t seem to be in the forecast! Hopefully we will be able to go to Tucson or San Diego for a couple of weeks next winter – we have relatives in both areas.

        • Yes, Hector and I lived in Atlanta in the 80s and they are definitely not equipped to handle snow, tough year for them. IF you visit San Diego or Tucson and we’re in the area, maybe we can get together.

  4. Soooo envious!!! Seal pix are adorable — will forward them to the kids. Angel, too, looks happy to be settled on softer ground for a bit. Enjoy the sun and your time together! Miss you! Joe and Jean

  5. Love the SD area! One of our favorites and the pictures and the descriptions make us long for another visit! Save up and do the Del Coronado Sunday Brunch. You won’t eat again for a week! I do love the beaches in that area as well. Great place and great timing! See you soon???

  6. Love that area! We spent last winter in the west. For some reason the ocean seemed on the correct side for me (I have no sense of direction). I keep messing up here on the east coast and I’m from the east!

    The seals are way too cute! When we were there, I had to speak to a woman who was kicking sand at a seal to get it to move for her child!! Can you imagine! Shortly after that they put up a rope so you couldn’t get right up next to the seals. We have some awesome pictures of me talking to the seal right next to them with their cute little faces.

    Hope the weather stays warm for you:)

    • We’ll be going back to look at the seals again for sure. Glad that people can’t get to them as easily now. The mom and baby were on swimming on the opposite side of the beach from where they are protected, and there was a snorkeler nearby. The lady we met was going to tell him not to get too close as he might spook the mom and baby and they might get separated. It just got foggy and a little cooler today, but I’m not complaining considering weather in many other .

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