Michael’s birthday was on Thursday, the 4th, and we had made plans to meet him in San Diego for a few days, taking in the world-famous zoo, perhaps its sister facility, the Wild Animal Park, and in other ways enjoying the splendid world-class city. Remember Michael lives in Lake Havasu City, AZ, often the hottest place in the United States, and he and Melina were anticipating cool Pacific breezes, being totally eager for the nearly perfect Mediterranean climate of this magnificent southern California city. Guess what. On the day all of us drove into San Diego, we were met with record-breaking heat. National City, (a San Diego suburb) tied with Riverside as the hottest spot in the nation with a temperature of 101. Wild. Hotter here than in Lake Havasu!
But true to the area’s real nature, the temperature dropped nearly 15 degrees yesterday, affording us a pleasant day when we spent 5 hours at the zoo. If a gauge were concocted, that laid over our foreheads would measure the level of enjoyment, I wouldn’t be surprised if I turned out to be the winner. There was a nice group of us: Mike, the birthday boy and his wife, Melina, Andrew, Shawnna, four of their kidlets, and Jerry and I. We had a wonderful time. It was tiring, though, and by the time we left most of us were anticipating a couple of hours rest before we would meet for dinner.
I never before had been this close to a gorilla, and with only a glass between us, I stood four or five feet away. I loved staring at this napping animal.
Take a look at that foot/hand. Amazing.
Again, I was just feet away from this polar bear. Poor thing; it has been so hot, he’d snooze a bit, then get up and with his huge paws, throw out the warm sand, and dig a new cooler place for himself.
Andrew arranged dinner at Lido’s, a neighborhood Italian restaurant on Broadway in the Lemon Grove area.. “Of all the places I’ve tried in San Diego, this is my favorite,” Andrew told me as we were exclaiming over the delicious food. It was jammed, with lots of families, a birthday party, and noisy, happy exuberance. I’ve forgotten the name of the owner, to whom Andrew had introduced me as we entered, but she followed us outside when we left, a charming, charismatic lady.
Edit Sunday: Her name is Liz.