Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Vacation Day 1 August 12, 2012

Left this morning at 9:18am to drive to Los Angeles.  We were going to leave yesterday but I couldn't find a hotel .  Everything was booked.  We were going to drive down the coast to see Big Sur then down to see Hearst Castle and to spend the night in Morro Bay.  We took 280 down to 101 then over to Highway 152 to 5.  We stopped to eat at a very busy Carl's Jr. in Coalinga.  The drive was pretty smooth sailing.  Just one spot where they were doing road construction and they had only one lane open.  We stopped for gas before driving over the Grapevine.  There was a little bit of traffic after we got over the Grapevine on the Los Angeles side. We arrived in Venice Beach around 4:00pm.  Not a bad drive.  I booked a room in an old 1920's apartment building.  There are studio and one bedroom apartments half a block away from the beach. There is no street parking so hubby dropped me off so I could get the parking pass for the underground parking which is a block away.  I sent the boy down to the car with the garage pass since hubby was doubled park. I waited and waited for them to come back.  When they finally showed up, the boy said they got lost in the parking garage stairwell.  They had to call the manager of the place to let them out. LOL!  Leave it to my hubby to get lost. We had a bright studio apartment with a little kitchenette at the back of the building.  After we settled in we wanted to get some supper so we had to stop back at the car to get something.  That garage is really confusing this time we all got lost in their!  We finally found the car.  We decided to eat at a restaurant called Vardo Wine Bistro and Cafe on Main Street.  It was nice out so we sat outside.  I had 3 tacos on corn tortilla, vegan chorizo, black beans, mozzarella, purple cabbage and salsa.  That was the special of the day and it came with a drink. The tacos were good but I thought they were a little too spicy.  Hubby got the Dal which is lentils with spices on a bed of brown rice.  That was really good. We switched dinners. The boy had the taco special, too. We got some nachos with salsa, guacamole, black beans and a cucumber yogurt dish.  Hubby and I have been gluten free for about 2 weeks now so this is our first time eating at a restaurant that has gluten free food.  Really good food.
There were a couple of girls and a guy who sat at a table near us. A lady walked by and stopped to talk to them.  She was introduced to the other girl and guy. It was Andie MacDowell who stars in "Jane by Design" TV show. She has also been in 4 Weddings and a Funeral, Ground Hog Day. She was on her way to yoga class.  I don't know how the one girl knew her though.  We walked along Main Street looking at the shops.  The boy found a hat shop that Fedoras so he bought a grey one.  We picked up some groceries since we have a kitchenette.  As we were walking back on Main Street past the restaurant I think Greg Louganis was talking to those same people.  Our room is very hot since we are on the second floor and there isn't any ac but there is a portable fan and we had all the windows open.
We walked to the beach.  The beach there is very nice but you have to walk a long way in the sand to get to the water.  The boys dipped their feet in the water. I didn't want to get my feet all sandy.  Then we walked down the boardwalk to Santa Monica pier. It was early evening so the lights were on the rides.  It was cool seeing the Ferris wheel with the changing lights. We walked about 3 miles there and back.  We were really tired after walking back.

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