To start the new year, we again ventured south to San Diego looking for a break from winter. This time we stayed for a month rather than two weeks. Like before, our place was the 4th floor one bedroom condo with a seaward window overlooking the Pacific Beach boardwalk. When not out and about biking, walking, hiking, shopping, you get the idea, our entertainment is the sea and surf, and the countless number of people parading just below our window view. Better than reality TV I would say! Mornings are the best time to look for dolphins and whales with our coffees in hand. We had numerous sightings of dolphins but only 3 sightings of whales. I'm surprised how closely dolphins are to shore. This was our second year at the condo which is beginning to feel like a second home. I think perhaps this is the way to go, eschewing ownership along with the headaches.
As much as we love staying in the Pacific Beach area and revisiting the familiar with our friend Steve who winters there from Sacramento, this year was more about exploring life beyond Pacific Beach, connecting with friends, and making new friends. We were able to spend some quality time with friends Dennis and Debbie from Pendleton, Oregon as well as our nephew Brandon and his wife Wonny. I also hooked up with my friend Doug from San Clemente whom I met riding across the U.S. in 2008. Overall, our activities took us from Oceanside to Chula Vista, at least half by bike and foot. Steve and I also connected with a local bicycling group on 4 occasions exploring unfamiliar roads and routes. Their friendship and company during our bike outings was one of the highlights of this trip. Hey Bill, Dave(s), Bob(s), Steve(s), Tim, and the rest, thanks for letting me become part of the gang.
There was not much birding or photograph this year but we enjoyed our stay immensely and are looking forward to a return. Mean while, there no place like home. Click on the picture below to go to my photos on Picasa and see why we love the area. Once there, start a slideshow or view manually.