woke in slumberland

...but you were part of my dream, too.

Monday, August 01, 2005

Where "Delightful" and "Charming" Are Overused Words

I am typing this with a tender wrist--i twisted it riding (okay, falling off) a mechanical bull in Tijuana--and it's still sore. More about that later.

I had a fantastic time in San Diego. The sad thing is that i have no photos to show you, because i lost my camera. Yeah, you got that right. I got careless and lost it on the way to the Street Scene festival, i'm not quite sure how. It was terrible, and traumatic, but i'm fine now. Besides that one awful mishap, i had the most enjoyable three days.

I arrived in San Diego at 2 pm on thursday and took a trolley to Fifth Avenue, then walked about four blocks to my hostel. This was in the Gaslamp Quarter, and it's a charming district--i wish i could show you its rows of beautiful restored 19th-century buildings, with their ornate and romantic facades. (In fact, here are some images i found of my neighborhood there: 1 2 3)

USA Hostel, where i had reserved my stay, was one flight up street level, just above a sidewalk restaurant. As i was climbing the stairs i could hear rock music blaring. The interior, painted in vibrant blue and orange, was both funky and inviting. A guy with a large, bushy hairdo was pottering about behind a door labeled "kitchen." Svelte European girls walked through the hallway (probably going to the party room for a smoke). It was a place brimming with youth and conviviality.

All right, i'm starting to feel tired, so here's a quick overview of my weekend:
  • I discovered a neoteric little store that sells specialized--mainly Japanese--toys called RE:UP (like the Chunky Far Flung Gallery back home). There i met a lovely Fil-Am girl named Annabel and her guy, Rae. Very nice people. (I hope they're reading this.)
  • Visited Seaport Village, which is delightful to walk around in but rather touristy. One place that interested me was a maritime shop that sells a lot of pirate-themed items. (Pirates are very popular these days, methinks.) I was tempted by a pair of shot glasses painted with a skull 'n' crossbones, but i decided it was a bit pricey.
  • Walked around Little Italy, a colorful row of cozy sidewalk restaurants that also function as mini art galleries. (I was going to call it a charming place, but i already said that about the Gaslamp Quarter. Words like "charming," "delightful" and "pretty" get extra exercise when one is writing about San Diego.)
  • When i returned to the Gaslamp, it was blazing with nightlife. Comely women in short, short skirts graced the doors of restaurants and flashed their eyes at passers-by. The beautiful people buzzed around the VIP list-only clubs. A long-haired rocker, blonde girlfriend beside him, sat on the sidewalk outside the Pacific Theater, strumming and singing for his supper. It seemed a shame to go to bed and shut the bright night out, but it had been a long day and this weary boy needed to lay down his head....

And now i have to lay down my pen, so to speak. Tomorrow i'll write about the Street Scene festival. Let me say for now that it was amazing, just amazing! Garbage, the White Stripes, the Killers, Kasabian... tomorrow....

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