Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Happy 4th from California!

Ok, so I only wrote one blog post while we were actually in California. I will catch everyone up though! Day 2 in California was probably the sunniest day we had during the whole trip. The weather there is perfect (when in fact it is perfect). It is usually in the 70's with a cool breeze and no humidity! My hair looked amazing! I digress. After Mass on the 4th Forrest and I went to breakfast at a place called Little Dom's that we walked to from Alecia's condo. I had blueberry and marscapone pancakes AND a Nutella sandwich. For all of you who have not tried Nutella, you simply MUST! It is the best stuff I have ever tasted. Seriously, how could you go wrong with chocolate and hazlenut spread? I got hooked on it when I was in Italy 2 summers ago and now I can't live without it! After our delicious breakfast, we went with Alecia for a hike in Griffith Park, which is right by her house. It was a very clear day so we had amazing views of the city! We also could see the Hollywood sign (my fave thing about LA). We made it to Griffith Observatory, where they have some humongous telescopes. The building itself is really cool as well!

I agreed to continue our hike, and we set out on a trail to reach a tall peak in the park. Again, the views were amazing, despite the fact that I was huffing and puffing. When we finally reached the top, I was exhausted! It was a really long hike and I'm just not in that great of shape, but the panoramic was amazing. I'm so glad we did it!

Still, because I was so tired I suggested we take the "short" way back, which meant climbing down some steep areas rather than leisurely walking down a gently sloping trail. It was WAY more difficult that I imagined and since I'm not that outdoorsy, it was not my cup of tea either! I just couldn't win for losing! :) Looking back on it after the fact, it was actually pretty neat, but I was terrified during the way down!

Back on flat ground, we walked back through Alecia's neighborhood, which is beautiful! The streets are lined with some magnificent trees and all of the homes are very beautiful. I could definitely live in that neighborhood! :)

After a rest and a good shower, Forrest and I drove out to Pasadena to see Alabama beat Texas for the National Championship!

Oh wait, we were 6 months late for that--a sore subject with me, btw. We did in fact go to the Rose Bowl for "AmericaFest", an event they host for the 4th of July. The stadium is a bit rickety and old, but the mountain views from it are stellar.

We wandered the area for a while and then Forrest convinced me to go to In and Out Burger for dinner. I didn't want to leave for fear of losing our parking spot, but I agreed because I was starving. I am SO glad that I did because In and Out was one of my favorite meals I had during the trip (seriously). Forrest totallly out-ordered me, though. He got "animalized" fries, meaning they were covered in some kind of special sauce, cooked onions, and cheese! How could you go wrong? He also ordered a chocolate strawberry shake (they mix the two kinds together). Genius! It was SUPER tasty and I'm really sad that we don't have one near us!!

After In and Out we made it back to the Rose Bowl and were in time to catch the DCI (Drum Corp International) show. Drum Corps (like marching bands, but only drums, brass, and color guard) performed their shows and they were super! I had heard of some of them back in my high school band days (yes, I played the clarinet and I was awesome), like Santa Clara Vanguard. I love watching bands and these groups were totally awesome. It was kind of like watching Drumline, but with a few more instruments. After the show, it was time for fireworks! They had them set to music and a recording of historical facts and speeches. It was really neat and really made me proud to be an American (not that I wasn't before, but hearing all of that history reminds you why it all matters)! I felt like a child, ooing and ahhing! It was a GREAT 4th, but I still missed being at our lake house with everyone like we usually are! My dad called and let me listen to their fireworks AND to our family's dog Buddy barking like crazy at them. It was so funny!! We had a great drive home jamming in our Optima and again crashed! I knew I was going to be super tired by the time the week was up!

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