National Lampoon's southeastern vacation - Part I

Man, I had forgotten how fast people drive in California. You’d think I’d remember. Having lived there for twenty-one of my thirty-five years and having been back to visit as recently as this past Christmas, you would think. I hit the 405 at 10pm and was doing 60 or so when I crested the on-ramp. In Hawaii, I’d have to slow down to TRY to merge with traffic in the slow lane (notice I said “try”. Merging is not a concept most drivers in Hawaii understand.). However, HERE I was passed up by the Little Old Lady From Pasadena in her Hummer doing 85. Eesh.

And I forgot about the haze. Not quite smog. Similar to vog (those of you in Hawaii know what I’m talking about). Just hazy, hard to see, and brown-ish gray. Ick.

We were in SoCal for all of about 36 hours – long enough to grab some donuts from my favorite local donut shop and hang with the West Coast grandparents for a bit. The kids had fun splashing around in the Jacuzzi (the pool is a little too chilly and a little too deep) and going on a pinecone hunt. Then it was up at o’dark thirty and off to the airport.

But not before my daughter made me smile yet again. Those of you who have met her know she’s incredibly outgoing and chatty. She’d sit down next to Charles Manson and talk his ear off.

So, why are you in jail? How’s the food? My name is Princess Trouble and I’m going to be in 2nd grade. I love to draw and make clothes for my dolls. What’s that “X” in your forehead for and where did you bury the bodies?”

On our way to pick up the rental car, she made friends with the shuttle bus driver. Derrick was his name and he was incredibly helpful, courteous, and kind. She talked about him all the way to the grandparents’ house and beyond. At 330am, as we’re heading to the rental car return location, she tells me she hopes she sees Derrick again. I explained to her that LAX is a BIG place and the chances of her seeing him again were slim.

Who do you suppose was waiting outside the bus to take us to our terminal?

Yep. Derrick.

She ran up and gave him a huge hug and about knocked the poor guy off his feet. I’m not sure who was happier to see whom…

…to be continued…


- hfs


Frankly Opinionated said...

Whattya doin? Did you write the post on the plane, then post it in the coffee shop? Welcome back across the pond. Florida Panhandle/Ft. Rucker are humid. Re hydrate often. You just missed "Bama Jam 08", and a lot of country rock, rednecks being rednecks, etc. Well, maybe you didn't miss it, just didn't attend.
Have fun,
nuf sed

Jen said...

Oh, that Princess Trouble! I just love her to pieces!

And she WOULD have that EXACT conversation with Manson. Word for freaking word.

We miss you all - be careful and take lots of pictures!

EL-EM-ES said...

Ohh I'll be heading to California next month too!!

EL-EM-ES said...

Ohh I'll be heading to California next month too!!


Wrote this six years ago. Nothing's changed.  One of my favorite movies is 'Bull Durham'. And one of my favorite scenes in ...