Sunday, January 18, 2015

Back Home!

Pat and me leaving sunny LA (the Hollywood Hills behind us)


We're home folks!  Pat is out and about in the frigid climes of Toronto as I type this and I am at home here on a rainy, Sunday morning in coastal Delaware.  

Folks, I am not exaggerating one iota when I say we both had the best vacation we've ever had.  EVER!  


Pat soaking up some of that warm California sunshine poolside on our last day at the Hollywood Bed and Breakfast (where we were staying)

The eve of our departure we both didn't sleep too well.  We were concerned about all the connections we had to make the first being returning our rental car to Enterprise and then getting to the airport.  Pat's flight was scheduled to leave at 8:35 AM and mine three hours later at 11:25 AM.  We were both flying to Philadelphia.  Pat originally had a direct flight to Toronto but his airline changed his plans.  When I found that out last month I tried to change my flight plans to so we could travel together (five hours is a long flight) but the cost was prohibitive.  $200 just to change it then I would have to make up the difference in the cost.  My original cost to fly to Philadelphia was $191. If I had to change I would have to pay the difference between $191 and that day's flight cost of $797. And . . . there was no guarantee we would even be seated together. Of course I couldn't do that.  So I was resigned to sitting around LAX for three hours waiting for my flight.  

I was up at 3:30 AM.  Pat was trying to get more sleep.  We wanted to leave the bed and breakfast where we were staying (a picture of the outside pool area which is at the banner of this blog - very colorful B & B) by 5 AM.  

Of course we were already exhausted from our ten days in LA, trying to see and do everything we could and still not collapse at the end of the day.  No naps for me during our LA stay by the way.

I showered and woke Pat up by my bustling around.  We got out of the B & B by 5 AM and in the early morning dawn, joined the early morning LA traffic to Enterprise Car rental to turn in our white Nissan Sentra which served us so ably for the past ten days (no accidents! Couple near misses, after all this is LA Traffic).  

At first I couldn't get my iPhone Google GPS to work and Pat was panicking.  He didn't want to miss his flight.  I wasn't so worried because I had HOURS until my flight.

Finally I got the GPS to working by rebooting my iPhone.  We had no trouble finding Enterprise and I have to say I was quite impressed with their efficiency.  We were on the Enterprise Shuttle bus to LAX in no time. Pat was relaxing a bit more.


Nervous (and tired) Pat and me (yet another "selfie") on the Enterprise Car Rental shuttle to LAX airport and connections


We get to LAX and Pat is looking where to get his boarding pass.  A very nice lady at LAX who works in customer service found out that we were flying separate flights to Philly and suggested to me to change my flight.  Incredulously I asked "I can do that?  How much would it cost me?"  She said "$75."  I went for it!  Are you kidding me?  I was so happy I ran up and gave her a BIG hug.  Now I would have to wait at LAX another three hours for my flight which was going to the SAME destination (Philly) as Pat's.  We were going together:  


Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious!!


We were set to go! Wow, what a great way to end our trip. 

We waited about an hour before our flight was to take off.   

Then came time to board our flight.  Our seats were all the way in the back . . . . . next to the bathroom . . . again.  This time I'm not complaining.  We were together on the same flight.  SUPER!


A very tried Ron and Pat on U.S. Air flight #754 yesterday morning
Of course making this five hour flight back to the east coast was a lot more fun traveling with a friend than by myself.  Two are always better when traveling, don't you think?


Pat settling in for the long flight back to the east coast

We arrived in Philly almost on time and then Pat was off to make his connection to Toronto with the help of the lady in the picture who sat (or laid) in the seats across from us on our flight from LA.  I think she had a crush on Pat.  She's in this picture on the right and Pat is on the left, ready to head into parts unknown (to him) to make his connection.


Pat (ready to run) and "Anne", the lady on the right holding her handle of her luggage, ready to show Pat where to make his connection.  Pat apologized later for his hurried "goodbye" (and here I thought he was glad to get rid of me after the last ten days)
Of course we all made it to our respective homes.  Bill and my co-worker Mark picked me up at Philly International and we made the two plus hour drive to my home in southern Delaware.  Oh how I miss those days when I lived in center city Philly and could take a shuttle to the airport.

Once I got home I literally collapsed.  Notice that I didn't do a blog entry last night.  

I unpacked my too much stuff that I took with me. Talked with Bill (good to see him again!) and learned what happened while I was gone and if I was missed.  No one missed me except Bill (and I him of course) but the world continued to spin whilst I was absent from these parts.

I hadn't eaten all day so I had one of my frozen baggie dinners. Later I called Pat at about nine o'clock.  He just got in his door on his neat little street in Toronto.  We talked a bit but were both exhausted.  The past two weeks were finally catching up to me.

I went to bed and didn't wake up until 9:30 AM or so this morning.  I didn't even get up to take a pee.  Wow, how long was I running on empty?

So here I am now folks, recovering and planning for next year's trip.  Oh yes, we're going back . . . . in January.  What a lovely time of year to visit California, in January to get away from the cold and frigid temperatures of the northeast.  

Yes folks, a great time was had by all.  Just wonderful.  Everything and more that I ever hoped it would be.  


Below, the legendary Sunset Boulevard. Perhaps not as glamourous as imagined but still pretty exciting.  And that was Pat walking ahead of me past the Days Inn (where he stayed at a previous visit).  Check out those blue skies folks and palm trees.  I love it!

16 comments:

  1. Ron,

    So happy you were able to fly back home with Pat, with all my solo flying I like it when I fly with someone I actually know! January is a great time to visit Southern California and know you will have a knowledge of the lay of land for your next trip out there. Glad you were able to sleep so late this morning. It always feels so good to sleep in your own bed! Looking forward to more pictures and video's, loved the picture of Pat relaxing in the sun.

    Cindy from Sonoma

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    1. Cindy,
      I was so happy to be able to make that five hour flight with Pat. My whole stay in LA had that little dark cloud hanging over that we would both be leaving the same day for the same destination but on different planes. Five hours is a long flight as it is but to spend another three hours at LAX just waiting for my plane? Sometimes we just get lucky. Our whole trip was a dream. I can't wait until we go back again net year and as you say, we have "the lay of the land" now. Next year's Winter Sojourn in sunny LA will be even better.
      Ron

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  2. Ron - I can't imagine anyone not enjoying the city of LA. So much of everything is there. And we caught quite a bit of it! On the mend now.

    Pat

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    1. Pat,
      All those naysayers about LA, they were so wrong. You're right, there was so much to do and see in LA. We didn't even scratch the surface. Next year can't come soon enough. We'll do it all over again and smooth out some of the rougher spots this time. And I won't take as many clothes. I am still very angry at myself for packing so much . . . . . again. Now to dig in here and wait out this winter.
      Ron

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  3. Looking forward to details over the coming weeks. I enjoyed Hollywood the time I was there. I will be south of there in Huntington Beach for two nights later this month.

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    1. David,
      For sure I will post all about the details of our ten day stay in LA. So much was done in so little time. We have to go back and we will. . . . next January! Enjoy your stay in Huntingdon Beach. I envy you.
      Ron

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  4. Sounds like a perfect ending to one heckuva fantastic vacation. I'm glad you and Pat got home safely. Now you'll need another vacation to rest up.

    I wanted to say recouperate, but wasn't sure how to spell it

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    1. Jon,
      Absolutely being able to fly back with Pat on the same flight to Philadelphia was the perfect ending to a perfect vacation in California. Oh how I loved Los Angeles. So many people are telling me "LA is nice to visit but you wouldn't want to live there." Well, I don't know about that but Pat and I are planning on returning next year. Now it is time for me to recuperate. One thing I've noticed is how quiet it is around here compared to where we were staying in LA, at the Hollywood Bed and Breakfast which is literally right on the noisy and busy Hollywood Boulevard. No complaints from me about that traffic noise, it just added to the delirium that was our stay in Hollywood/LA. Next up a short trip to NYC in May.
      Ron

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  5. Home! After all, there is no place like it (I saw that in a film)
    I bet Bill was quite glad to see you!

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    1. Dr. Spo,
      Bill was VERY glad to see me and I him. One good thing about going away is that you do come home and have a new appreciation for home and your loved ones. And just between you and me, I think Pat is happy to get a break from me. (smile).
      Ron

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  6. Well after all those non-stop excitements I think you'd better 'take it easy' for a few days ;-)

    Btw: in top photo you and Pat in same style sweaters and caps, not to mention similar spectacles AND beards - and yet you're surprised that people think you're brothers?

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    1. Ray,
      You make a good point. I think Pat and I have the same tastes in dress and personal grooming. We didn't plan it that way and as a matter of fact, I have made an effort not to go to the "twins" route that some gay couples do by dressing EXACTLY alike. But I guess we can't help but be similar in appearance. Our outlook on life an personalities are very similar too. So much that it is uncanny sometimes. He can read me (and I him) like no other. No fooling Pat, I don't even try. (smile)
      Ron

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  7. What a great vacation! There was a stretch of about 10 years where I flew regularly in and out of Philly. It was always under construction. Didi they ever finish?

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    1. Jono,
      Actually the Philly airport is very nice. Pat even remarked on it how much nicer it was than LAX. When I used to travel more often in the Seventies (my regular summer flights to P-Town) I remember the airport always seeming to be under endless construction. I think they've finished now because it is very smooth and comfortable and well run.
      Ron

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  8. Anonymous6:51 PM

    Wow, it sounds like you had an awesome vacation. I'm glad you and Pat had such a good time (I'm envious). Its great you were able to fly back to Philly together also. I love seeing your pictures of the trip too.

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    1. Our California vacation was awesome. Something I dreamed about all my life. Took a long time getting there but well worth the wait. Memories too last the rest of my life. Now to get back to my regular routine.
      Ron

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