6/22/15 Chronicles

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  Monday 6/8/15

It's been a terrible day. I had an early conference call, but I didn't go because I'd had such a horrible night trying to sleep.  Then I forgot to get dressed, so when the dry cleaner guy called, I had to rush to get dressed and hurry downstairs.  Then I got really sick. I think Hooters might have gluten in their chicken salads, and that's what did it. I sent them an email to find out. (They say no)

I tried to nap, but it didn't work. I felt better, so I got up and went to run some errands. I got David's birthday present early. I went to the Verizon store and bought a tablet to replace his ailing laptop. Hopefully he will like it. If not, I'll keep it for myself :) I'll give it to him a little early so we can use it on the trip.

I went to Wal-Mart, too, to pick up a few things. I was really tired when I got home, so I did take a nap. It's very hot today, too. Still not as hot as usual, though, or as humid.

We went to Epic again for dinner, and it was good, as usual. They know us at all of these places, so it's kind of funny.

I was gossiping with this woman on Facebook. She works for another media site (a much bigger one than mine), and she was slamming some other women that work for sites similar to mine. She's very full of herself, but I don't think she quite understood how insulting she was being to me, let alone these other women. I think she suddenly realized she may have said too much, so she asked me not to say anything. I just said that I wouldn't say anything, and then she went back to slamming the other women. Jeez.

I tried to go to bed about midnight, but I was very itchy and in pain. Oh, my right ear has been hurting off and on all day, so I might go to the doctor to see if I have an ear infection. Especially since we're flying soon. I took a shower to try to clean out my ears, but it didn't help all that much.

It should be interesting to see what the future holds. I sure love living in Hawaii! At some point, though, we might want to move out farther, to the suburbs. If I can convince David to commute to work a little. :) Or maybe we can just move into a higher floor of this building because I'm pretty sick of the noise here on the 7th floor.

  Tuesday 6/9/15

I have two early morning calls and then I'm going to phone Kaiser to see if I can get an appointment. My ear is still bothering me. :(

I took a really long nap and then went to Kaiser. The doctor looked in my ears and said the right one looked red and inflamed, so she gave me a prescription for antibiotics. It doesn't sound too serious. It's actually not hurting since I took the nap, so we'll see. I was not happy to know that I'd gained 7 lbs.

We talked about my other problems with allergies and my back. I might be going to see the allergy doctor and physical therapist again after our trip.

  Monday 6/22/15

I didn't update this blog for a few weeks! I was just really busy with our trip. Too busy with life to blog!! That's a good thing :) This below is all from my memory, and with a little help from Twitter. Mostly I'm mentioning where we stayed or ate... you can assume that the rest of the time was either spent chatting with family and/or friends, or catching up on some email, or sleeping.

My ear infection cleared up and was not a problem. My allergies have been really bad, though, and I guess I didn't eat as gluten free during the trip as I did last year (although I ate at many good gluten-free restaurants, just not enough, apparently).

Tuesday 6/9 I was supposed to have lunch with my friend Cynthia, but she had to cancel unexpectedly.

David had Thursday off due to King Kamehameha Day, so we went out to dinner Wednesday 6/10 night to Waikiki (like we usually do on Fridays).  We hadn't been to P.F. Chang's for a while, so we went there. I almost always have the chicken lettuce wraps.

Thursday 6/11 was a state holiday, not a federal one, so we went over to get our passport photos taken at a place called Image City. They did it really fast. We walked over to the Federal passport place, but they said to just mail our passport application, so we did. I stopped to get David's birthday present. I also bought an external hard drive so I could back up my computer, just in case. I was shocked that I could guy one about the size of my smart phone, very lightweight, that was only about $60 and holds a terabyte! It's been at least 2 years since I bought one and although they did have small, portable ones, they didn't hold that much.

I stopped at Verizon and the guy there that helps me with phone and other issues told me that Hawaii is going to have it's first comic convention in September! That's very exciting.

Friday 6/12 we left Honolulu in the evening and arrived in San Diego the next day. It's about a 5 hour flight, I guess. I didn't sleep much on the plane and was very tired, but I spent a lot of time watching a DVD and then listening to my iPod.  I was cold all day. First it was windy and chilly in Honolulu while we waited for our cab to the airport. Then the airport had big fans going, then the bar we went to in our terminal had really strong A/C, then the plane was very cold, then we changed planes in L.A. which was also very cold, then San Diego was cold, then our room there was freezing (the maids had left the a/c on at 69 degrees). Brrr! I don't like to wear long pants on the plane because it's not comfortable, but I did have on a sweater, and socks and shoes on my feet instead of my usual sandals, but it didn't help all that much.

Saturday evening 6/13 we stayed in downtown San Diego at the Wyndham, which we'd stayed at last year. It's gone downhill a bit, but we got a good deal. Their restaurant/bar has closed down, and I guess they used to host Delta employees, but now they're gone. It's a great location, right across from the harbor.  Our room seemed just as fine as last time, except for a giant hair in our shower :) While we were waiting for our room to be ready, we got some drinks at the Yard House.

David loves baseball, so he tries to watch as many live games as he can when we travel, since we don't live near any MLB teams. He went that night while I slept.After the game, we went out for a late dinner and drinks at Ruth Chris. Ruth Chris has a wonderful salad and we shared a small steak. Both were excellent.

They don't have real meals on airplanes any more, especially in coach, but they have these little snack packs. I like the one they name "Tapas" because it's mostly gluten free and good (also vegetarian I believe). It has a delicious cheese spread, olives, hummus, some salsa-type thing, almonds, crackers and some lentil chips as well as some pomegranate chocolate. The crackers are the only thing I can't eat, and the almonds are plain so I don't like them. Everything else is really good. I had the Tapas snack pack on the way back, too.

Sunday 6/14 we went to El Cajon to visit his mom and sister Susan. We visited his mom. She's doing okay. I know she really appreciated us visiting and taking her out for a while.  I brought her some chocolates and some earrings that I'd found back in February. She wears clip-ons, which can be hard to find, and I found her these beautiful sparkly ones. She got lots of compliments on them, so she was pleased. 

Then David went to another game in the afternoon. Susan and I took their mom out to lunch at Nicolosi's, an Italian place we've been going to for years. It's always really good, and they have a great gluten free menu. I had the ravioli.  Susan and I did most of the talking because it's just too difficult with her mom's hearing problems and the external noises in a restaurant.  After we took her back, we walked around the mall for a while.

The Padres won the first game on Saturday, but they lost the other two he went to (all against the Dodgers).  They lost when I bet on them in Vegas, later. Ah, well. His Sunday game went to the 12th inning.

My brother came over; his ex-wife Zina gave him a lift. She went home to sleep after that. We were both pretty tired, as well, but we hung out and chatted.  Mary came by around 7:30 and gave us all a ride to karaoke at Second Wind Santee. This is the same place we went to last year for karaoke. A few friends showed up: Martin, Will Lund, and his friend Anthony; Will is an old friend of my brothers' from Comic-Con, and he's my Facebook friend now; I think they said that Anthony was also on the old Comic-Con committee.  It was really loud in there and hard to hear. Mary's boyfriend Tony came, and his two sons (they all seem really nice), and also her son, Jake, and her friend Tina. Ira showed up later, after most people had left. It was great to see everyone! We had a lot of fun.  Mary said they started at 8, but they were already going when we got there. We went to Jack-in-the-Box to get dinner first.

Mary and I sang "Sugar, Sugar" together. It was too low for both of us, but loads of fun. Later, I sang "Back in the USA" by Linda Ronstadt. It went really well. I love that but haven't been able to sing it in public before (it's on a rare karaoke disc). After that it was all duets. My voice was not doing too well on the higher songs; allergies were making it difficult. We had fun, though, and that's the main thing. Our friend Ira came late after most of them had left, so we stayed another hour.

Monday 6/15, we went over to see my MIL again and take her out for lunch. We went to a really great Thai restaurant.  I think we napped in the afternoon...I don't remember! We drove back to the Gaslamp so David could go to another game. I usually go to at least one game with him, but I was tired and he doesn't care one way or the other. I wasn't feeling well, actually, from my usual problem.  I had room service earlier and it was really good. They have a fantastic salad there with goat cheese. I mostly just watched TV and played on the computer. We stayed at the Hilton in the Gaslamp, which was fine. After his game (they lost again), we walked around to try to find a restaurant that was open, but since it was after 10, it was difficult. We finally found one: Henry's Pub. We'd been there before for karaoke a couple of times. They have really great burgers. I wanted to stop at Ghirardelli, but they were closed, too.

Tuesday 6/16 we flew to Vegas for two nights. We had a small snack at a little place in our hotel (The Linq) called Off the Strip. They have this wonderful appetizer that's asparagus wrapped with cheese and a thin steak strip, then it has mushroom sauce. So good! The Linq is where Imperial Palace used to be. I shouldn't have had that food, though, because I wasn't hungry enough for dinner (I'd made reservations ahead of time because it can get crowded). We had a nap and then went to my favorite French restaurant, Mon Ami Gabi, in the Paris. I forgot that they have huge portions. I love it because they have lots of great gluten free choices, including a wonderful bread. I really wanted to get the pate, but I knew it would fill me up too much. I got the Duck L'Orange, which came with scalloped potatoes. It was delicious and I couldn't finish it all. I really wanted to have the chocolate mousse, but I literally would have barfed if I'd tried it at that point! We had a really nice super-enthusiastic waiter, too.

We did some gambling there and then took a cab down to the new casino, SLS, which used to be the Sahara. David collects $1 poker chips, so he had to get the new ones. We like to casino-hop, do a little gambling here and there, and drinking etc. I don't drink like I used to, so I was mostly drinking water and diet Coke most of the trip. The SLS was very odd and I took many photos that you can see (from the whole trip).

We walked over to the Circus Circus and played there for a while. They had a karaoke bar, too, but it was very loud and touristy, not really my kind of place. We went to the Slots-of-Fun next door, too. That place has seen better days! The doors don't even open automatically any more. It's very rare in Vegas that you have to pull a door open. They no longer have table games like poker, roulette and blackjack. They just have darts and beer pong. It was very strange. Then we went over to another new casino, the Westgate, which used to be the Las Vegas Hilton. Suzanne Somers is playing there, apparently. They have her first name and photo all over the place. It was really bizarre to see my name everywhere!

I would have loved to see Olivia Newton John, too, who's playing at the Flamingo right now. No one wanted to go with me, though...ah, well.  Anyway, we went back to The Linq and didn't stay up much longer. We were both pretty tired.

Wednesday 6/17 we met up with my other SIL and her husband at Nine Fine Irishmen, an Irish bar in the New York New York Casino. We had a nice lunch there (I had a really good salad) and then went walking around downtown, gambling and having drinks with them.  I know it sounds like I was eating very healthy, but trust me, I had too much food and too much sugar.

Later, we went to dinner at a place called Seafood Shack, which was mediocre. I screwed up. I had seen this restaurant, The Yardbird, online. It serves lots of gluten free food, including fried chicken. My memory is so bad. I remembered that it was in the same hotel as the karaoke, but I got it mixed up. There was live band karaoke on Tuesday night there that we didn't go to. So then I thought it was at Gilley's in the Treasure Island, where we were going for karaoke Wednesday night. By the time I figured it out, it was too late to go back to the Venetian. So the Seafood Shack was the only place in the TI that had gluten free food, so we ate there. Ah, well.

We met up with them again for karaoke at Gilley's. They wouldn't sing but didn't mind watching me. It's a fun place, very country western. They have a big stage and huge dance floor as well as a mechanical bull. We were there from about 8 to around midnight and I got to sing 4 songs. I was doing country, since they preferred that. I started out with "Whose Bed Have Your Boots Been Under" by Shania Twain, then I did "Black Velvet" by Alannah Myles, then "Turn on the Radio" by Reba and finally "Broken Wing" by Martina. I had never sung that last one in public before. It all went over very well. Most of the singers were pretty good and the crowd was very nice. I would go back there again. I did drink for this karaoke and it was fun.

Afterwards, we stopped at White Castle for some snacks. We had been delighted to find one in Vegas! That's new. You don't often find White Castle in the western part of the U.S.  They have great burgers. We did a little more gambling before heading back to our room.

I really liked the Linq, although I think their place could use better air conditioning. The rooms were fine, but the casino and restaurants were a bit too warm the first day we were there. It was like 110, but still, that's not unusual for Vegas. Most places have too much a/c so it was weird that they didn't have enough.  They have some great little stores and other things there. They have this one little cafe I kept stopping at for drinks etc. and a wonderful Daquiri bar. The room was pretty nice.

We left the Linq about 10, but then our plane was delayed a few hours, so that was annoying. I could have had more sleep or we could have eaten at a better restaurant than the one at the airport.  I was really tired and groggy. I even bought some coffee, but it took me a really long time to wake up.

We flew back to San Diego Thursday 6/18 morning; it was a bit later than we had planned. We went over to Hooley's for a late dinner. They're another Irish place, in Grossmont center. They have great food. I was tempted to get one of their wonderful corned beef tacos, but I just had a salad instead. I felt so bloated from the whole trip and too much over-eating.

I tried to sleep early because I was exhausted, but allergies kept me awake.

Friday morning 6/19 we met up with our friends George and Beth; they live in Poway so we met them at this place we all like called the Hamburger Factory.  They have adorable twins. I forgot to take photos :( We had a great time, though, catching up. We went back to their place for awhile and hung out, chatted. I was really tired, though, and having the gluten problems again.  He works for a company that makes durable cell phone cases, so he gave me one he had. It is excellent! It makes it hard for your phone to break if you drop it, and it's also water-proof.

I believe I had a short nap, and then we went out to dinner with my SIL Susan and her husband John, and my MIL. We went to the Outback for a super early dinner, which was ok. I think Ruth Chris has spoiled me now for steak anywhere else. We had a nice visit, though. Afterwards, David and I went down to the Gaslamp again. We had a really nice evening there. We had drinks at The Field for a while. Then we were hungry again later, so we had some great appetizers at Osetra, which we realized is our favorite restaurant now.  We've been there many times over the years, and it's always outstanding. I had this lobster salad that is the most delicious thing I've ever eaten that isn't chocolate.  David said that his was also great. They have an ice bar there where you can put your glasses on it to keep them cooler. We also stopped in the tequila bar called Lime that we like. They have a really delicious pomogranate martini there and a large book full of different tequilas you can order, so David tried one that he liked called Tres Los Tonos!

I went to be pretty soon after we got home, and the next morning Saturday 6/20 I had to do laundry.  David got breakfast for me at a little placed called The Trails Eatery. It has a lot of delicious gluten-free food. I got blueberry and banana pancakes, and some sausage. All delicious. The pancakes were huge, so I saved them for later. We drove up to Carlsbad to see some friends there that were having an event. We got to see some people that we hadn't seen since high school, so that was fun. I saw twins Karen and Sharon Stultz, who were in my school, class of 78 (year before mine). I had some classes with them but couldn't remember which. Later I realized that Sharon had starred in the play we did, "The Matchmaker!" I can't believe I forgot that. I was in that one, too, playing an old lady. I had most of the third act to myself so that was a cool role. It sucks getting old and forgetting these things. It was also hard to hear where we all were.

I brought a black dress to wear to the event (it is my nicest dress, that I bought at Nordstrom's and wore to David's work holiday party), but then we were told to look festive, so I bought a scarf to go with it, and I put my hair back in a colorful scrunchy as well as wearing a bright necklace. Still, I was kind of over-dressed, but there were people there of all types with various types of dress. I didn't feel too bad but I wish I had known that I could have dressed more casually and been more comfortable.  The dress looked really nice, but it's tight and not too comfy, and I was also wearing stockings. It was a hot day, too.

Afterwards, we went to our Motel 6. I guess Carlsbad has a lot more tourists now, due in part to Legoland, so that was the only place we could find for under $200 per night. Although to be fair, it wasn't bad, especially for a Motel of any kind. The only drawback is that you have to pay for internet in advance, which they didn't tell us, so later, when I went to get online, there was no internet. We walked back to the office to buy it, but there was only one slow clerk working, and she was taking forever checking a party in. I finally gave up and went back to the room. It was just taking too long. We had to get up pretty early the next day, anyway.

After we got back to our room, we went out to find dinner. The Motel is on what used to be called Elm, but is now Carlsbad Village Drive. The whole area is much nicer but also has a lot more tourists. At first we had a hard time finding a restaurant where there wasn't a long wait, but we found a good Italian place called Branci's that had gluten free veal piccata and delicious pasta! We just sat at the bar and ate, and the place was very busy but the people were nice. We also went to an Irish bar there called O'Sullivan's for drinks.  Later, we stopped at the Jack-in-the-Box so I could get a snack and take photos. This was my very first job. The place has changed a lot (I'm sure they've remodeled once or twice since 1980!).  Next to it is the Carl's Jr. that we used to eat at very often back when I was in high school and we were dating my senior year.  We knew many people that worked there, too, at various times. The grocery store, which was the Big Bear, is now something called Haggen's. Apparently they took over many California grocery stores like Vons, Pavillion, Albertson's and Safeway.

The little Mexican food drive-through across the street is still that but with a different name. I wish we'd had more time to go to the library and our old neighborhoods, too, to take more photos. Oh, and we stopped at Texas Liquor, which is now Texas Wine and Spirits. They have an amazing beer and soda selection, too. I tried a gluten free beer that I'd never seen before called Green's. It wasn't bad at all. I'll have to look for that one. There was also a delicious cream soda called Flying Cauldron Butterscotch Beer. It sounds like something out of Harry Potter! It was yummy, but I only drank a little.

We watched a little TV before going to bed. I charged all of my appliances and did a little bit of work on my site and posting of photos first.  We were bummed to learn that one of our old friends, Chris, was also in town, but he was already asleep as he'd just flown in (his daughter, Ariel, is one of my FB friends).  We offered to meet in the morning, but I guess he didn't get up in time. We had to really early, 8 am.

Sunday 6/21 David drove through Carl's for me. They have a Breakfast Burger, which is a bacon cheeseburger with an egg and hash browns. I couldn't eat the hash browns or bread. I was pretty sure about that, but I don't know if the rest was gluten free or not. There stupid allergens chart only tells you that the whole thing has gluten, not about the individual parts. I've found some web sites that say that their burgers are gluten free if you eat them with lettuce instead of bread, but they don't tell about their bacon or eggs, so who knows?

We drove back to El Cajon to my SIL's place. She lets us use her old SUV while we're there, which is very convenient. I had about an hour to get packed and work on my site some, then John drove us to the airport, which was very nice of him. He also told me about a band called Echosmith that has some songs I might like to learn. Cool!

We ate some lunch at the Stone Brewing Company, which is the company that makes Arrogant Bastard Ale. I had their BLT as a salad, and it was pretty good, but I wasn't hungry because I'd been sick from gluten.  They make their diet cola with Stevia, which tastes yukky to me.

We flew from San Diego to San Francisco on United. It was not a good flight. First of all, something made me very sick (perhaps Carl's?). Our flight was not comfortable for me. They have these little TV's in the seat in front of you, but the controls for mine didn't work. I couldn't change the channel, nor turn it off. It was annoying. Also, the seats have these pillows at the top that you can't take off. They are not comfortable for my messed-up spine as they don't support your neck, only your head. Yet you can't wear a neck pillow because it's in the way. Also, the plane was freezing again. I asked for a blanket and was told that people in coach don't get blankets. How rude! I'd gotten a blanket on the trip over so that lame. I was really cold. Also, all day my left side of my back/neck/shoulder was hurting, probably from carrying bags. It got worse on the second flight. My hand was sore, too, and throbbing, and a bit numb, too. UGH.

When we stopped in San Francisco, I found a store that sold blankets, so I got a really nice, soft, warm one for $25. The long flight from there to Hawaii was fine, and they did give out blankets and pillows, but the one I bought was worth having, anyway. I slept a lot of the way. Otherwise I just listened to music on my iPod. After we got back, it was still light out, so we went to Downbeat Cafe for dinner as we often do on Sunday nights, anyway. They were playing early 80's music, which we enjoyed. It reminded us of when we were at Stony Brook.  We were pretty tired, though. I checked out my plants. Only one of them seems to be doing worse than when we left, and it was not doing so great then, either. I didn't have anyone to water them, so I got these terra cotta things that water them while you're gone with a water bottle. It seemed to over-water the Starfish plant, but it seems to be ok despite that. The others look fine, but we'll see how they fare over the next few weeks.

I went to bed last night about 9pm. I was so exhausted from all the traveling! I woke up briefly around 1 in the morning and then went back to sleep. Then I got up at 7:30, right before David. My back was killing me, so I took a muscle relaxer; then I slept until after 10am! I'm feeling much better now. I had leftover pancakes for breakfast.

I went back to sleep and slept until after 1. I've just been catching up on some work for my site and not much else. I feel like there's so much to do and I'm just too worn out from my trip to do it. The place is dirty and a mess, and I have laundry to do...

I hope you had a nice Father's Day! My dad died years ago, and I lost touch with my foster dad, and David doesn't speak to his.  No celebration for us!

We had dinner at Epic. I had their blackened fish, which is delicious. We just caught up on some TV before David went to bed. I'm still doing work...but I have to get up early so I'm going to bed soon.

Don't forget to also check out my TV Blog! Both are updated about once a week.

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This page updated 3/24/17

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