We are spending a week in Southern California with family before heading off on our "National Lampoon PCS Vacation" tour. After a day to nap and catch our breaths, we're up and running (well, walking...no running). About 10 years ago, our hometown created a wildlife exploration center up in a canyon above the city. So we took off to explore it today. And we found that my children have lived a very sheltered existence in Hawaii.
The wildlife center has exhibits about all of the different wildlife in the area: snakes, coyotes, jackrabbits, mountain lions, bobcats, all sorts of birds and falcons, bugs, and spiders. The only critters we have really ever encountered in Hawaii were some birds and some spiders. And mosquitoes. But snakes? No snakes in Hawaii, other than the occasional Hawaiian Blind Snake. Coyotes? Not unless you count Wyle E. Coyote on TV. No mountain lions or bobcats except at the zoo. My children were...stunned. And a little scared. There were lots of questions about whether or not we'd encounter any of these animals and critters on our hike. Thankfully, the only thing we encountered that was out of the norm was a baby (tan) Praying Mantis.
The other adjustment is how DRY it is here. In addition to being a little dehydrated from the flight, it is much drier here than in Hawaii so they are both quite dehydrated. Thankfully they both like water and I don't have much trouble getting them to drink. It will be an adjustment for them though.
We are heading south to see some friends and hang out at LegoLand in a bit. Thus begins our Road Trip extravaganza.