Sunday, September 14, 2014

Where in the World is… oh, San Diego

This month, I’ve been impersonating Carmen San Diego.  And this time, my where in the world is – fittingly – San Diego.  Except, I keep forgetting I’m in America and keep feeling like I’m in Africa.

The weather is amazing and is probably the main reason I feel like I’m back on the continent.  It’s deliciously hot, but with a wonderful breeze.  There’s something in the air (probably humidity) that feels cozily familiar.  Plus, there’s palm trees all over the darn place.

The other reason that’s a potential contributor to my feelings of Africa may be the hotel I’m staying at.  You see, I’m in San Diego for the State Bar of California Annual Meeting, which is at the Hyatt.  As a speaker at the meeting, my travel and one night at the conference hotel could be covered by the Bar.  This is a wonderful bonus, and I’m very thankful.  However, I’m also a tad too poor for the rather pricey Hyatt the rest of the nights.  So, I got myself a simple room about a half-mile from the Hyatt.

I didn’t know how simple.  I think Mr. Trizzle – who also came for the conference – felt tricked.  We’re at a place called 500 West, supposedly the oldest hotel in San Diego.  It’s atop a YMCA and I believe it was part of the YMCA back when people could actually stay at the Y – like the Village People sing about doing.

Personally, I like the accommodations.  The bed is comfortable and there’s free wi-fi.  That’s all I need.  I love that there’s no air conditioning but instead a giant window that opens.  It doesn’t have a screen, which feels very African.  There’s a ceiling fan in the room.  I keep expecting the power to go out and am pleasantly surprised when it doesn’t, because I keep forgetting I’m not in Africa. 

The bathrooms are down the hall and are kept stocked with toilet paper, soap, shampoo and shower gel.  All things that also continue to pleasantly surprise me, and the toilet paper’s free!  There’s little flies in the shower that kind of look like botflies, but as far as I’m aware aren’t, because I’m not really in Africa.  Mr. Trizzle and I went to get flip flops our first night here.  I pretty much never wear flip flops in America, so my feet think they’re in Africa.  Somehow, I forgot to pack a citenge.  The hotel has towels though!  That was a nice surprise, as was discovering that my feet don’t turn black if I walk around the room barefoot.

There’s also a mini fridge, that actually works, and an ice bucket for the ice machine down on the second floor.  Mr. Trizzle and I have each killed a bug in the room (one of us far more calmly than the other; I’ll let you guess which), but I haven’t seen more than that.  And as far as I know, none of the bugs we have seen, in the room, shower or outside, are potentially lethal, so that’s always nice.  Lots of the other guests here speak languages other than English, perhaps foreign tourists.  That also adds to the feel of being in Africa.

I think I’d rather be in Africa, but that’s often the case, no hard feelings to San Diego.  Love the weather, and the conference has been pretty great, too.

500 west 3

Most of the room.  There’s about 3 feet to the side of the bed, including the wardrobe, and about 4 feet at the end of the bed, where there’s a desk w/o a chair, the mini-fridge and a very tiny television.

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