Cornfield Meet

Things collide here.

Road Trip photos: June 19-21

Somehow, I let almost three months pass since I last uploaded and organized a batch of my cross-country road trip photos, so this weekend I went through and processed some more.

There are three days’ worth of pictures here, although Saturday and Sunday June 19 and 20 are underrepresented photo-wise: It was a weekend just packed with greatness, hanging out with friends and just enjoying the west coast and the experience of being someplace totally new to me, but so much of that joy was just in the company and the moments, and not the sort of thing that gets captured through a camera lens. So the few images from those days almost serve as memory-triggers more than anything else.

Take this one, for instance:

The Donut Man

You see The Donut Man on Rt. 66 in Glendora, California.

I get thrown back to a day that began with a gorgeous drive up the coast from San Diego; several hours group-geeking at Frank and Son, where I found a flashback-inducing Imperious Leader action figure; a late lunch at Q Noodle House and a drive to The Donut Man for some fresh-strawberry-filled donuts. (Our original plans had called for introducing me to shaved snow at Class 302, but of course the day’s first batch was gone when we got there.)  A spontaneous trip to a nearby comic shop, and then an evening of more hanging out and visiting new friends and nerding out.

I left for the drive back to San Diego late the next morning, and after a brief nap, I spent the afternoon and evening swimming with my host friends and having an absolutely fantastic dinner and some wine out on their front patio as night fell. Again, it was just a terrific, warm-the-soul sort of day, and yet the only pictures you’ll find are the ones I snapped just after supper – the last sunset of spring:

Last sunset of spring 2010.

On Monday, June 21, Jenn and Kelsey made their own (much quicker) trip across the U.S.A., and after they caught up on a bit of sleep, the three of us spent several hours in the afternoon at Balboa Park and a few that evening at Seaport Village. The whole day’s worth of photos is here.

Here’s the moon over the Coronado Bridge:

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October 24, 2010 Posted by | Food and Drink, geek, photos, Travel, Weblogs, writing | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Road Trip Level 1 – complete!

…and my princesses are no longer in another castle: I picked up Jenn & Kelsey this morning at the San Diego International Airport, and we’re all together again for the YMCA Gymnastics Nationals, which kick off tomorrow.

My 25 hours in the Los Angeles area (Saturday to Sunday morning) were insanely fun, and I wish I could have stayed a little longer amidst such excellent and generous friends, soaking up their humor and creativity and kindness and inspiration and all the other things that make them just generally wonderful people to be around. (And yes, this even applies to those I just met for the first time. All of you rock, and you made my brief stay in L.A. Just Freaking Awesome.)

I mean, really, can you say enough nice things about the kind of people who treat you to, among other things, a visit to The Donut Man for fresh strawberry gut-busting goodness?

But back south I had to go, and a sunny drive and an afternoon nap and some backyard pool time and a scrumptious dinner and wine with some more great people made for the perfect end to a week on the road.

Here’s the view from our hotel, where my wife and daughter are currently enjoying a post-lunch doze, having left Ohio at oh-dark-thirty this morning:

I can hardly believe a week’s worth of this road trip has gone by, and Phase II is under way. We’ll spend the next four days here – my mom and her husband arrive tonight – enjoying San Diego and the gymnastics competition together – and then begin our separate journeys back home on Friday morning.

Life is good.

June 21, 2010 Posted by | geek, Ohio, Travel, writing | , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Nerding in L.A.

In Collect All 21, I wrote about the day I got my dad to take me to Kmart on a quest to find some of the new second wave of original Kenner Star Wars figures, which included the first action figure incarnations of several of the cantina scene aliens.  None were to be found. Utterly disheartened, I settled for a pair of Battlestar Galactica figures instead: the six-limbed Ovion and the purple lizard Imperious Leader.

So yesterday, some thirty-odd years later, I’m making my first visit to Los Angeles, where a few friends are treating me to the nerdtastic and occasionally slightly creepy wonderland that is Frank & Son’s.

And look what I found:

He’s every bit as ungainly and strangely textured and so unlike my Star Wars guys as I remembered, but as sad as I was that day to settle for him in place of a Hammerhead or Greedo or Snaggletooth, over the years the Imperious Leader came to hold a special place in my memory. This time around, he turned out to be exactly what I was looking for.

June 20, 2010 Posted by | 1980s, geek, Ohio, science fiction | , , , , , , | 3 Comments

   

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