San Diego Part 1: North Park Living

Our recent visit with Shannon was short, but awesome. We left for California on Wednesday afternoon and only stayed until Sunday. During that time, we squeezed in as much exploring as we could stand, visiting many of Shannon’s favorite haunts, meeting some of her friends, eating at her favorite places, and discovering new restaurants, too.

State of California

It felt like we moved around a lot, but the furthest point to which we traveled from Shannon’s neighborhood was about 15 miles.

But, wait, I’m getting ahead of myself.

I thought those of you who are geographically challenged would like a map to show exactly where San Diego is located within the huge state of California.

It’s pretty far south. In fact, it’s the southernmost, well-known major city in California. Tijuana, Mexico is less than 20 miles from Shannon’s house.

We did NOT go to Mexico. We did eat some Mexican food, though. Surprised? That’s our favorite ethnic fare.

Thursday morning, the first things on our itinerary were eating breakfast and being introduced to Shannon’s neighborhood.

We wisely combined the two by walking through the neighborhood to Lucky’s Restaurant for breakfast.

I posted this next picture yesterday, but am posting it again because it is what I saw when we left Shannon’s cottage…

Yes, the sky really was that blue!

Her cottage is within the neighborhood of North Park in San Diego.

Shannon's Neighborhood is North Park

I thought y’all might like to see a map. I had no idea where her house was located. I mean, I have her address, I’d just never looked it up on a map. It may not look like it on that map, but North Park is within San Diego. The city comprises a number of very diverse regions and neighborhoods.

Shannon's Neighborhood

I love that there is a neighborhood sign.

I actually have quite a few pics to share. If I comment about every one, this post will take me forever. I’ll just add a caption if I think it’s important.

The biggest aloe plant I've ever seen. (3.5' tall x 5' wide)




Lucky's Breakfast Restaurant

Shannon had never eaten at Lucky’s before, but had heard (from friends or Yelp!) that it was good. It’s basically a tiny diner, operated by one man, that only serves breakfast and is only open until noon.

Yep, one guy — Lucky, I presume — greets, cooks, cleans, buses, serves, runs cash register, etc. It was clean and the food was cheap and good. Service was a little slow, but we could see the man working. So we knew he wasn’t just hanging around smoking, chatting, and/or texting all of his friends. We didn’t mind the wait because, for a change, we were in NO HURRY.

Ah, vacation…

North Park, like most of San Diego, is a colorful place.

When I took that last picture, I said to myself, “I wish the parking lot was empty.” Then, later, when I saw the shot, I realized the cars and mural were color-coordinated. So all was cool.




Spotted In a Store Window

The cat made me smile. Hubby and Shannon both thought it was stupid.

Good thing they weren’t taking the pictures or you would have missed out on that masterpiece.

Β That is actually Shannon’s dry cleaner. We stopped on the way back to her house to grab her freshly-laundered clothes.

Hubby helped her carry the stuff back. Not because she asked, but because he’s gentlemanly like that.

Yep, he’s a keeper.


Large flower outside of a neighboring cottage. I only noticed it after I stepped on one enormous (like a foot long) flower petal.

Oh, and I also JUST noticed (as in while writing this post) that there appear to be bananas or something similar growing above that flower. Shannon, run out and check that later, ‘kay?

The next shot was taken later in the day. See the moon?

After we dropped Shannon’s clothes at the house, we went to the beach. I have lots more pics from Day 1, but little time in which to post them.

So those images will just have to wait.

Before I sign off…

Shannon left a comment (she’s one of most frequent commenters) on my last post saying, “Obviously I like San Diego and I love my neighborhood, but I’m interested to hear why you think SD is the perfect place for me. No sarcasm here at all, really wondering.”

Well, I’ll tell you. Dad contributed, by the way.

– Reason 1: ‘Cause you’re a hipster and we’re not. (We tried in vain to get Shannon to teach us some hipster-speak, but she wouldn’t. I think she was afraid we’d use it inappropriately, or maybe even appropriately, and embarrass her.)

– Reason 2: San Diego in general and your neighborhood in particular are just about as eclectic as you.

– Reason 3: It finally taught you how to drive like an East Coaster. (Fast. And maybe a little crazy. Definitely impatient.)

– Reason 4: Lots of good food and many different dining options. (Everyone who knows her knows she likes eating different stuff.)

– Reason 5: Small-town feel in a big city. (She promised to find us a Warrenton, SoCal version.)

– Reason 6: Multiple yoga studios within walking distance of your house. And bars. Restaurants, too. Plus other funky little stores.

– Reason 7: You seem happy there. (Of course, that’s the most important reason of all!)

More pics to come tomorrow, folks. So stay tuned!

Yep, another repeat. But I really like this picture.

5 Replies to “San Diego Part 1: North Park Living”

  1. I didn’t think those were bananas on that tree, but I double checked because I knew you’d ask if I actually looked. Those things that look like bananas are actually unopened flower petals, if you can believe it.

    I guess I’m getting used to the idea that some people might consider me to be a hipster. I just hope I’m not the douche-y kind that are annoying to most folks! πŸ™‚

    I DO drive faster, that’s for sure. I’ve probably always been a bit impatient (hmmm, wonder where that trait came from?), but I don’t think you guys have spent that much time in a car with me before. And the crazy part? Yeah, I may’ve learned that from a particular fast, California driver I know. πŸ˜‰

    Warrenton, SoCal version…could you stand my neighborhood? That might be the closest you’ll come without having to go too far inland. But, I have a few years to do more research, haha.

  2. Okay, so you surprised me on a few counts. You like Mexican food? πŸ™‚ You never looked Shannon’s town up on the map?? And you did not get impatient with the waiter??? Still can’t believe it. I wish Shannon would teach you hipster-speak though, would love to see you trying to pull that off. πŸ™‚

  3. Shan, thanks for investigating those banana flowers. I can believe it. Those petals were as big as my foot. And we all know I have big feet. You’re not the douchey sort of hipster. But you are far hipper than us normal folk.

    Your neighborhood is awesome and maybe we could tolerate one of those nice Craftsman cottages if it had a yard. And patio. And maybe a garage. Otherwise, inland would be better. Of course then we’d get hot. Ugh.

  4. Annelies, now I know you know I love Mexican food. And I really, honestly never looked her up on the map. Very unlike me. But I did study her map while I was there so I could find everything again. Oh, I could totally pull hipster-speak off. If I knew the words. I can do yo-girl really well. Remember, I grew up in da hood.

  5. Lol. I’m not sure. You might’ve just blown your credentials with that last “da hood” phrase. πŸ˜€ Or maybe I’m not picturing it in my head all wrong.

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