Many months ago Dan noticed that a law conference was going to be held on Coronado Island during the week of my birthday. He began the process of requesting permission to attend the conference, and finally received approval for full funding, including his airfare, meals, and 4 nights at the famous Hotel del Coronado, where the conference was being held. He also received permission for me to share the room with him, on condition that he not skip out on any of the conference. That is how I ended up spending my 35th birthday in a beautiful warm place, far away from the stresses of home and family life (not to mention the Michigan winter).
My mother and sister kindly agreed to fly out to stay with the children while we were gone. Dan was in meetings most of each day, so I got to explore on my own, which I thoroughly enjoyed. Although the California natives that I ran into were horrified by the weather we experienced while I was there (rain and temperatures in the high 50s/ low 60s), I found it delightfully warm and the scenery green and lush. One morning, as I was walking along the beach, a warmly bundled local stopped me and asked if I was from out of state. "Yes," I replied, wondering how she knew. It was my shorts.
Although I enjoyed a trolley tour of San Diego, walking in Balboa Park, exploring Old Town, a dinner in Little Italy, watching Avatar in 3D, and a long train ride and walk to the old San Diego Mission, the highlight of the trip for me was the time I spent on Coronado Island. I loved walking through the neighborhood near our hotel. The homes were so nice, beautiful landscaping, new plants that I wasn't used to seeing, lovely, diverse architectural styles...I loved eating breakfast at a little cafe on Orange Street, eggs scrambled with fresh tomato, onion, and cilantro. I loved sitting on a small balcony at the hotel right up at eye level with the top of a palm tree rustling in the wind. I loved the blue sky, and watching how quickly the clouds blew in and it started to rain, and then the clouds blew away again for another patch of blue. One night after dinner, Dan and I walked down to the ferry landing and enjoyed a beautiful view of the San Diego skyline across the water, all lit up.
Here is our hotel:
San Diego skyline from the Coronado Bridge:
A beautiful tree at Balboa Park: