Off to the Beach

Trip Start Apr 27, 2009
Trip End Apr 27, 2010

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Flag of United States  , California
Saturday, August 29, 2009

We collected our minivan and got on the long road to LA on Tuesday morning. The sat nav woman did a good job of getting us there in decent time although she did get upset when we had the temerity to stop for food at Wendy's. I think her revenge was taking us onto the toll roads which were good time-wise but had us scrambling for change! The hotel was really beautiful and very peaceful, especially after the noise and bustle of Las Vegas. After getting checked in we nipped up to a nearby mall (Fashion Island) for some dinner...eventually, after we dragged ourselves away from the cute puppies in the pet shop!

On Wednesday we decided to go to the South Coast Plaza to the shops. After more than a few wrong turns that dragged a 20 minute journey into an hour long nightmare we finally arrived. Three hours later Mum, Dad and I were ready to leave but Lesley and Euan decided to stay a little longer and get a taxi back to the hotel later. We went to find the ocean. It wasn't too hard to spot but finding a way to get close enough for a wander along the sand was more difficult - too many fancy boats in the way! Finally we found a turn off, parked the car and got our feet all sandy. Mum and I also got our shorts/trousers wet because we got caught out by how far the waves came up the beach (not just once either!). The sun was warm enough to dry them off by the time we got back to the car though. After a wee rest at the hotel and no sign of the shoppers returning we went back to the same mall as the night before for dinner again. We made it back from dinner before Euan and Lesley returned from the shops - they managed to stay until closing time (9pm) although, to be fair, there were quite a lot of shops!

Thursday morning after breakfast we all piled into the car again for a trip across Los Angeles to Universal Studios. We managed to miss most of the bad traffic and didn't go round in circles  a successful trip! Although the theme park is much smaller than the one in Florida there were still some enjoyable attractions there. We started with the Jurassic Park which ride got us all drenched (just as well it was sunny, it was nice to cool off a little) and ended with the Simpsons Ride which Mum and I had our eyes closed thoughout! In between the highlights were definitely Shrek 4D and Waterworld. There was a booth with a large puppet of Donkey from Shrek which was absolutely hilarious, the guy doing the voice was incredibly quick-witted and actually sounded alot like Eddie Murphy. I think we could all have listened to him all day!! After the park closed we went for a delicious meal at Tony Romo's just outside the theme park in the Citywalk.

On Friday we lazed about the pool for a while after breakfast then went down to Balboa Island for a look round the small shops there. After doind a drive past of the beach so Lesley and Euan could see the ocean (parking was hard to come by) we went back up to Fashion Island for a look around the shops there...and another visit to see the puppies! For our last dinner we stayed at the hotel restaurant which was nice. Euan and Lesley got the hugest portion of nacho's I've ever seen and actually managed to do a pretty good job of demolishing them!

This morning we pakced up and checked out after breakfast before heading to....yup, the shops! We went back to South Coast Plaza (this time a much quicker, less eventful trip!) to get some last minute shopping before heading across the city to return the car to LAX and go our separate ways - me to San Francisco and everyone else back to sunny Scotland, via London. It was really great to see my family and spend some time with them even though it was hard to say goodbye again, and not just cos I'll be back to bunk beds and easy mac 'n' cheese now!!
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