This Trip Report Is Under Refurbishment For Your Future Enjoyment (UPDATED 9/13 with final bonus chapter)

Captain_Oblivious

DIS Dad #257
Joined
Nov 10, 2008
Amazing what a shot where people are looking AWAY from the sun can do to open their eyes.
So you can either have a great foreground or a great background.

Maybe it should have been called Wretch Wretchy....
All it needed were a couple of flips!

Especially those who might be your loudest voices in protest.
Are you saying people are hypocritical??? :eek:

Here's a TR Title for you to use for that one:

Vacation Be Damed!
I like it! Filing that one away.

Winner, winner, post-chicken dinner.
:thumbsup2

That looks identical to the one you ate in Salem. Hmmm, do you have like 1 photo of a burger and just use it for every TR ?
;)
What can I say? I know my type.

Great!
We'll go into production.
We'll buy poptarts, add $0.03 worth of frosting and sell them for an extra $2.50.
Not a bad business plan.

It's not speed... it's timing. Trust me. I know.
I guess you've had the practice!

Now that's something I haven't heard in a long time!
Hmm... came out in 1983. Pretty sure I saw it in the theatre.
I love it when people catch my movie references.

So go all in and get completely wet.
Why not? The rental doesn't belong to me.

But it feels like it does.
At least we're doing something, right?

Yes! You are! I know that about you!!!

Wait... did you say "art" or "fart"?
Yes.

That's the one. DA BEARS

Nah. You're good.
Which is more than I can say about the Donner party.,


Sheesh. Some party.
:rotfl2::lmao::rotfl:

Donner Party. Worst. Party. Ever.
 
  • franandaj

    I'm so happy, I could BOUNCE!
    Joined
    Nov 15, 2009
    Just like that, it was time to leave Yosemite. Reality comes crashing down hard very on us very quickly during these road trips.
    I hate how the end comes crashing down on you. Unless you have reached that point that you've kind of had enough. :rolleyes1 . #foreshadowingforanotherTR

    I was determined to see as much of the park as we could, so we took a side road that led to the Hetch Hetchy Reservoir. Also, “Hetch Hetchy” is just plain fun to say.
    OK. If you say so....

    After about 12 miles simulating the Dinosaur ride at AK (without the dinosaurs), we arrived at the gate.
    Or Indiana Jones without the....oh wait....

    The road ends at a parking area next to the O’Shaughnessy Dam, constructed in 1923 to block the Tolumne River and create the reservoir, which provides both water and power to the greater San Francisco Bay Area. The dam was a highly controversial project, opposed by many environmentalists (including John Muir) at the time due to the beauty of the Hetch Hetchy valley, which was said to rival that of the Yosemite Valley
    Interesting tidbit of information.

    If you thought the dam jokes were bad enough, I forced Julie to take this photo on the drive out. As if you needed further proof that my sense of humor has been stunted since age 10.
    :rotfl2:

    :sad2:

    There were a lot of climbs where we thought the poor hamsters in the Dodge engine were going to give out from exhaustion.
    I hope Chrysler uses better hamsters. We just bought a Pacifica and may wish to take it on some mountain road trips....

    Everyone else was so bored they started trying to see how many pretzels they could fit in their mouths at one time. Julie was the winner, with 7.
    Now is this a common Harbeson vacation tradition? I feel like I've seen this picture before and Julie was also the winner.

    After about 4 hours, we reached the Lake Tahoe area. If I’d taken the interstate, we would have missed Lake Tahoe altogether.
    So would that have involved going up the Eastern side of the mountains on the 395?

    We made it to Truckee and met up with my cousins at their house. I hadn’t actually seen them in years, so it was really great to catch up. They took us on a dime tour of Truckee, including a burger place for dinner called Burger Me. I had a BBQ bison burger, which was pretty delicious.
    Wow! Your relatives are rather spendy! I only usually give the nickel tour to my guests! The burger place sounds pretty good! It's been a while since I've had a good burger. I think I need to change that.

    Thankfully, we had just eaten, so no one was in dire need of whatever food they could find for survival, but instead could just enjoy a nice sunset view of Donner Lake.
    Nice way to end a day...

    Had to Google him.
    I guess that's another thing I take for granted having grown up in California. He was a very large figure in our history. Lots of stuff named after him.

    I love it when people catch my movie references.
    :wave: I caught it too!!!!!
     

    Captain_Oblivious

    DIS Dad #257
    Joined
    Nov 10, 2008
    All these dam jokes are making me want to re-read the Percy Jackson books...
    My son read those books a while ago and made sure to point out those pages to me.

    I miss far more than I catch, I'm sure.
    I don't put in as many as I used to. It used to be a whole contest and everything, back when I had time for that nonsense.

    I hate how the end comes crashing down on you. Unless you have reached that point that you've kind of had enough. :rolleyes1 . #foreshadowingforanotherTR
    Uh oh. This sounds ominous.

    OK. If you say so....
    Oh, come on. It's at least a little fun.

    Or Indiana Jones without the....oh wait....
    :sad1:

    I hope Chrysler uses better hamsters. We just bought a Pacifica and may wish to take it on some mountain road trips....
    We got a Pacifica on our Texas trip, I think. And we liked it quite a bit.

    Now is this a common vacation tradition? I feel like I've seen this picture before and Julie was also the winner.
    Um....maybe? I wouldn't call it a tradition, but we do get bored in the van a lot.

    So would that have involved going up the Eastern side of the mountains on the 395?
    No, I think the shortest/quickest route would have been to make our way over to I-80.

    Wow! Your relatives are rather spendy! I only usually give the nickel tour to my guests! The burger place sounds pretty good! It's been a while since I've had a good burger. I think I need to change that.
    It's always a good time for a good burger.

    Nice way to end a day...
    We could certainly do worse.

    I guess that's another thing I take for granted having grown up in California. He was a very large figure in our history. Lots of stuff named after him.
    He certainly spent a lot of time there!

    :wave: I caught it too!!!!!
    Yay! Nice work.
     

    Captain_Oblivious

    DIS Dad #257
    Joined
    Nov 10, 2008
    Bonus Chapter 11: Back Where We Started

    In the morning, we met up with my cousins again for some coffee at a local shop, just because we enjoyed their company and wanted to hang out one more time before leaving. And by some miracle, they agreed to see us again.

    Afterwards, we hit the interstate for a 3-hour drive back to San Francisco. It was three hours of driving during which absolutely nothing happened, which means it was still better than watching Shakespeare In Love.

    Traffic was getting jammed up near the city, so we got off at Highway 37, which would take us to the north around San Pablo Bay. And we promptly ran into a traffic jam.

    We eventually started moving again and, since we’d used up all of our PB&J supplies, we stopped for lunch at the California institution: In N Out Burger. It wasn’t our first time here, but since we don’t have them on the East Coast, it makes for a more exotic fast food lunch than most other places. As for the food itself, it’s fine. Most Californians that travel east seem to speak of In N Out in hushed, rapturous tones. I find that the burger is decent, and the fries are lousy. But it all beats PB&J.

    We navigated a myriad of turns and hills north of the city and finally found our way to Muir Woods National Monument. This is a grove of majestic redwood trees named for the famous naturalist, Dr. Albert Schweitzer. No, I’m kidding—it’s named for John Muir, of course, the environmentalist who worked to protect Yosemite and so many other natural areas from construction and development. This land was protected from a dam project by California politician William Kent, who appealed to President Theodore Roosevelt himself for protection in 1908. Roosevelt agreed, writing:

    “My Dear Mr. Kent: By George, you are right!

    P.S. Those are awfully good photos.”

    He was going to name it the Kent Monument, but Kent proposed that it be named for John Muir instead, since he was at the forefront of so many campaigns (along with President Roosevelt) that had eventually helped form our National Park system.

    Because it’s so close to San Francisco, Muir Woods is typically overrun with visitors. Parking had been a nightmare for years, so they have no instituted a system where you can make an online reservation for a timed arrival and be guaranteed a spot, or ride a shuttle from various locations. Because I am a professional vacation planner in my mind, I had made a reservation for an arrival between 12:30 – 1:30 p.m. We got there right on time.

    And we were promptly told that the lot was full, and we needed to drive down the road to the overflow lot.

    So we did, and the attendants there told us that the overflow lot was full, and that we would need to drive further down the road to the overflow overflow lot.

    So we did, and the attendant there was pulling a barricade across the entrance, and waved us further down the road.

    We drove another mile only to discover that there were no more parking lots. Many people were just pulling off onto the shoulder wherever they could and just leaving their cars.

    Not wanting to hike 2 miles back to the park, we turned around and drove back to the overflow overflow lot. This time, we saw someone pulling out, so we were able to get in and find one of the few available spaces. I’m going to go ahead and say that I don’t think they’ve solved the parking issue here.





    At the gate, we displayed our VIP National Park Pass and went inside. There are several miles of hiking trails in the park, but we just took the main trail, which is about a mile loop through the grove of redwood trees. It basically looks like something out of Lord of the Rings. Or, if Star Wars is more up your alley (like me), the moon of Endor.



    There’s a nice little boardwalk trail that makes it easy to follow the path. It also keeps 5-year-olds from destroying the forest ecosystem. Don’t ask how I know.







    It was a nice walk, and the trees of course are incredibly tall. I couldn’t help but feel a little underwhelmed, though, because the trees weren’t as massive as the ones in Sequoia that we’d seen earlier in the trip. In addition, the park was very crowded, and it felt crowded. So it didn’t feel like the peaceful retreat they had envisioned so many years ago.

    These displays are always fun, though.





    We retrieved the van and drove south towards the city. I figured it didn’t count as an official trip to San Francisco unless we drove over the Golden Gate Bridge at some point. But before we did that, we got off at the last possible exit so we could take a look at it from the north side.

    We miraculously found a parking space at Battery Spencer, an old fort built into the bluffs. We hiked a short trail up the hill and found that we all had to hold onto our hats or risk losing them into the bay. The wind was fierce off the Pacific.

    The view was pretty great.



    Towards Alcatraz:





    The fog was rolling in quickly. By the time we actually did drive across the bridge, the clouds had arrived.





    Cheapskate alert: you only have to pay the toll if you’re driving north, out of the city. Thank goodness we were heading south.

    We’d come full circle at this point, and one of our last points of interest of the trip was in the same place as the first: the Presidio. It’s not really advertised, but not really a secret, either: one of the office complexes here houses the offices of Lucasfilm (makers of the Star Wars and Indiana Jones movies). It’s a place of work, so there are no tours, but the lobby and plaza areas are open to the public, and it’s worth 15 minutes for a stop if you’re a Star Wars fan.

    There’s a Yoda fountain outside in the plaza.



    We discovered this was a good place to practice How Not To Be Seen.







    Inside the lobby, there are a few bits of Star Wars memorabilia scattered around.









    One more stop to make: we drove down underneath the bridge to visit Fort Point National Historic Site. This is part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, built between 1853 and 1861 as part of the Army’s defense system for San Francisco Bay. Mostly, it’s an old fort with a cool view of the bridge. It’s only open on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. We just went to get bridge photos.









    Evening was approaching, and so was rush hour, so we tried to leave the city. Unfortunately, everyone was leaving early for a Friday night, so we had to fight our way through traffic. It was slow going through the city streets, and driving was a handful between aggressive drivers and traffic signals every 50 feet.

    Getting close to the Bay Bridge ramp, a yellow light caught me as I was approaching an intersection. I decided I wasn’t going to make it and hit the brakes. I happened to stop just over the crosswalk. Cars jammed the streets all around me.

    I glanced to my left, where a police officer was manning the control box for the signal. He waved his arm in the air at me. I wasn’t sure what that was supposed to mean. Then I looked around and thought..maybe I’m blocking the crosswalk? I was probably hanging over it by about a foot or so. People were already crossing the street in front of me.

    I looked up in the rear-view mirror, and traffic was right on my bumper. I had nowhere to go.

    Next thing I know, the officer is walking behind my fan and taking a photo of my license plate with his phone. He approached the door and I rolled down the window.

    “I got you for failure to yield and obey an officer,” he said.

    “Wait, what?” I said. “I don’t have any room to back up.”

    He turned his back on me and waved me off, saying something unintelligible. I just shook my head in disbelief. The light turned green, and I drove off.

    That put me in a foul mood the rest of the day, so I’m sorry to say I don’t have anything special to report for the end of the trip. We crawled across the Bay Bridge to Oakland with the rest of the traffic and stopped at a restaurant in the city called Drake’s Dealership. It’s a brewery that was built in an old car dealership, which makes for a cool atmosphere. They had very good pizza and beer.







    For dessert, I had planned a grand finale at Fenton’s Creamery, an Oakland institution which happened to be featured in the last scene of the Pixar movie Up. But as luck would have it, they only had about 5 parking spaces, and of course they were all full. We drove around for about 20 minutes and couldn’t find a single place to park. This put me in an even fouler mood. Mark no function ice cream well without.

    We started driving back towards our hotel near the airport, and Julie offered to do a search on her phone for other local ice cream places. I grumbled agreement, mostly wondering how much the traffic ticket was going to cost me. She found a place, and gave me directions. But when we found it, it was a sad-looking shop in the middle of a low-rent neighborhood surrounded by an industrial area. I thought it looked sketchy and didn’t want to get out of the van.

    We ended up getting McFlurries from a McDonald’s inside a Walmart. Fail. Double fail, even.

    I bet Fenton’s Creamery was better.

    So, our California Adventure ended on a bit of a sour note. We flew home from Oakland the next day, which began with a beautiful view of San Francisco and was interrupted by a short delay for a late-April snow shower in Chicago.





    We should have known better than to fly through Chicago in the dead of winter like that.

    But we made it home no worse for the wear. As we flew into Philadelphia, I got a shot of the sports complex, home to my favorite teams. At this point in the season, the Phillies were still halfway decent. I wasn’t looking forward to football season at that point.



    Narrator: by June, he would be.

    As is our tradition, we updated our family travel map. Getting so close to filling it in…



    It would be late July before we left on our next adventure. But that, my friends, is a different trip report. As always, thanks for reading this one.



    P.S. I never received a ticket from San Francisco. I don’t know if the cop was lazy, or forgot, or found it was a rental and decided not to pursue it, or what.

    But…hopefully my family will forgive me for being so grumpy afterwards.
     

    pkondz

    . . Dis Dad #797 . . Hoping to get lucky
    Joined
    Mar 9, 2007
    And by some miracle, they agreed to see us again.
    Stealing their car keys was a brilliant ploy.
    It was three hours of driving during which absolutely nothing happened, which means it was still better than watching Shakespeare In Love.
    :laughing:
    we’d used up all of our PB&J supplies,
    Noooooo!!!! 😱
    As for the food itself, it’s fine. Most Californians that travel east seem to speak of In N Out in hushed, rapturous tones. I find that the burger is decent, and the fries are lousy
    I don't remember the fries being bad, but... the burger is decent for a chain, but... it's definitely a chain burger.
    This is a grove of majestic redwood trees named for the famous naturalist, Dr. Albert Schweitzer.
    Wow! What are the odds!
    “My Dear Mr. Kent: By George, you are right!

    P.S. Those are awfully good photos.”
    dam good photos.

    No. Wait. Dam not good.
    And we were promptly told that the lot was full, and we needed to drive down the road to the overflow lot.
    um...
    We drove another mile only to discover that there were no more parking lots. Many people were just pulling off onto the shoulder wherever they could and just leaving their cars.
    What the?...
    I’m going to go ahead and say that I don’t think they’ve solved the parking issue here.
    So what exactly was the point of reserving? You didn't have to pay for that, did you?
    There’s a nice little boardwalk trail that makes it easy to follow the path. It also keeps 5-year-olds from destroying the forest ecosystem. Don’t ask how I know.
    Probably just a hunch.
    Whoa. Pretty.
    In addition, the park was very crowded, and it felt crowded. So it didn’t feel like the peaceful retreat they had envisioned so many years ago.
    Well... poop.
    I enjoyed reading that. :)
    Awwww.... :)
    The view was pretty great.
    Pretty great? It's pretty spectacular!
    One of these shirts is not like the others...
    :lmao:
    Interesting perspectives.
    driving was a handful between aggressive drivers and traffic signals every 50 feet.
    Ugh. Sounds like so much fun...
    “I got you for failure to yield and obey an officer,” he said.

    “Wait, what?” I said. “I don’t have any room to back up.”

    He turned his back on me and waved me off, saying something unintelligible. I just shook my head in disbelief.
    "I'm sorry I don't know the Macarena. I assume that was what the vague hand signal was for?"

    What a jerk.
    Yum!
    What in the name of all that is unholy... Pineapple??????
    I'm Canadian (where Hawaiian pizza was unfortunately invented) and even I know that's an abomination.
    We drove around for about 20 minutes and couldn’t find a single place to park. This put me in an even fouler mood. Mark no function ice cream well without.
    :sad2:
    We ended up getting McFlurries from a McDonald’s inside a Walmart. Fail. Double fail, even.
    Next time park illegally. Probably worth the ticket.

    Maybe not the tow, so keep an eye out.
    We should have known better than to fly through Chicago in the dead of winter like that.
    Or to fly through Chicago... ever.
    Narrator: by June, he would be.
    ::yes::
    P.S. I never received a ticket from San Francisco. I don’t know if the cop was lazy, or forgot, or found it was a rental and decided not to pursue it, or what.
    I'm not surprised. Out of State = higher mailing cost and effort.
    But…hopefully my family will forgive me for being so grumpy afterwards.
    Forgive? Sure! Forget?
    They stockpile these to use against you in the future.
    As always, thanks for reading this one.
    Thanks again for another fun filled tour with the family! You always make it fun to read, Mark.
    Thank you!
     
  • QueenJen

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Sep 2, 2012
    Most Californians that travel east seem to speak of In N Out in hushed, rapturous tones. I find that the burger is decent, and the fries are lousy. But it all beats PB&J.
    I agree that the fries leave a bit to be desired. I guess I find them a bit limp. DH loves In N Out - so now I order my fries "well done" and most of the time I enjoy them.....Unless they really cook them well done and they are like crisp potato sticks.

    Next thing I know, the officer is walking behind my fan and taking a photo of my license plate with his phone. He approached the door and I rolled down the window.

    “I got you for failure to yield and obey an officer,” he said.
    Always a stressful feeling being approached and then waiting for the ticket to arrive. We've had a couple of incidents in a rental car in another country and we never received a ticket.

    I second the thank you for sharing your family trips. Happy to see a bit more of your map getting filled in. I hope you share your experience from the summer and of course when you complete the family goal and make it to Alaska.
     

    Terra Nova guy

    DIS Dad #811 Newfoundland, Canada
    Joined
    Nov 11, 2014
    which means it was still better than watching Shakespeare In Love.
    I have never seen that movie. It seemed like it was a big deal in the day though. Didn't it win an Oscar for Best Picture? Of course so did "The Shape of Water" which I just found strange and couldn't sit through, so who am I to judge.

    We drove another mile only to discover that there were no more parking lots. Many people were just pulling off onto the shoulder wherever they could and just leaving their cars.
    Sounds like a plan. Anarchy at it's finest. Yeah, it doesn't seem like they fixed the parking problem.

    Not wanting to hike 2 miles back to the park, we turned around and drove back to the overflow overflow lot. This time, we saw someone pulling out, so we were able to get in and find one of the few available spaces.
    I've been known to circle back to the first parking lot on more than one occasion. It rarely pays off.
    Trying to find parking is one of my greatest pet peeves.

    Or, if Star Wars is more up your alley (like me), the moon of Endor.
    It wouldn't surprise me to see a speeder bike zooming around the corner.

    It’s a place of work, so there are no tours, but the lobby and plaza areas are open to the public, and it’s worth 15 minutes for a stop if you’re a Star Wars fan.
    If I was ever in the area, I would certainly try. It helps that there are no tours, so the ladies in my family wouldn't have to be bored for too long.

    That put me in a foul mood the rest of the day,
    I don't blame you at all. I would be much the same.

    We drove around for about 20 minutes and couldn’t find a single place to park.
    I would have given up at that point too.
    Even when I go to a mall or something, I often park way in the back where there are fewer cars, just so I don't have to deal with traffic. If it's going to be a struggle, I'd rather not try. That sounds like a real motivational greeting card.
     

    rdkeim

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Oct 23, 2006
    Really enjoyed reading about your trip! Sorry your last day was so frustrating. But, getting no ticket was a plus! On your family travel map, looks like you've been in our neck of the woods - central IL. Can't imagine what was interesting there :-)
     
  • franandaj

    I'm so happy, I could BOUNCE!
    Joined
    Nov 15, 2009
    As for the food itself, it’s fine. Most Californians that travel east seem to speak of In N Out in hushed, rapturous tones. I find that the burger is decent, and the fries are lousy.
    I wouldn't go that far. But it is a better burger than most fast food places. And the fries are good as long as you eat them as soon as you get them in the drive through. Make sure to put the packet of salt they give you on the fries immediately. And you have to wolf them down because their half life is very short. Their tastiness wanes with every passing moment.

    And we were promptly told that the lot was full, and we needed to drive down the road to the overflow lot.
    I think I remember Ellen saying that Rope Drop was key here.

    The view was pretty great.
    Looks like the old Soarin!

    one of the office complexes here houses the offices of Lucasfilm (makers of the Star Wars and Indiana Jones movies).
    I was aware of this but never made the time to give search it out.

    Mostly, it’s an old fort with a cool view of the bridge. It’s only open on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. We just went to get bridge photos.
    It's kinda cool to check out. If you're into Civil War stuff.

    “I got you for failure to yield and obey an officer,” he said.
    I think he was just punking you and trying to ruin your day.

    That put me in a foul mood the rest of the day, so I’m sorry to say I don’t have anything special to report for the end of the trip. We crawled across the Bay Bridge to Oakland with the rest of the traffic and stopped at a restaurant in the city called Drake’s Dealership. It’s a brewery that was built in an old car dealership, which makes for a cool atmosphere. They had very good pizza and beer.
    You can have all the one with pineapple and jalapenos. 🤮

    We ended up getting McFlurries from a McDonald’s inside a Walmart. Fail. Double fail, even.
    OMG. Epic fail. You could have at least found a Rite Aid, they still sell Thrifty's Ice Cream. Did you have those out in Delaware?

    We should have known better than to fly through Chicago in the dead of winter like that.
    April is the dead of winter? :laughing: I thought this was "Spring" break.

    It would be late July before we left on our next adventure. But that, my friends, is a different trip report. As always, thanks for reading this one.
    Looking forward to hearing about that one!

    P.S. I never received a ticket from San Francisco. I don’t know if the cop was lazy, or forgot, or found it was a rental and decided not to pursue it, or what.
    Like I said above. He was just punking you.
     

    Captain_Oblivious

    DIS Dad #257
    Joined
    Nov 10, 2008
    Stealing their car keys was a brilliant ploy.
    You do what you gotta do.

    Noooooo!!!! 😱
    You seem much more upset than I was.

    I don't remember the fries being bad, but... the burger is decent for a chain, but... it's definitely a chain burger.
    Agreed. It beats the tar out of PB&J, of course. Those fries have about a 1-minute shelf life. McDonald's wins going away on french fries.

    Wow! What are the odds!
    If only we could have seen the backside of water.

    dam good photos.

    No. Wait. Dam not good.
    Dam right.

    So what exactly was the point of reserving? You didn't have to pay for that, did you?
    Sure did! Cost me 8 bucks for the pleasure of trying to create my own parking space.

    Probably just a hunch.
    I know of what I speak.

    Well... poop.
    I did, but much later.

    I enjoyed reading that. :)
    Yeah, those displays are always fascinating.

    Pretty great? It's pretty spectacular!
    Ok, let's go with that, then!

    One of these shirts is not like the others...
    Drew needs to work on his t-shirt theme game.

    Interesting perspectives.
    It was fun to go underneath the bridge.

    Ugh. Sounds like so much fun...
    I really did not enjoy driving in San Francisco. At all.

    "I'm sorry I don't know the Macarena. I assume that was what the vague hand signal was for?"

    What a jerk.
    He was a jerk. There were so many things I wanted to say to him, and I couldn't say any of them.

    That was a good one.

    What in the name of all that is unholy... Pineapple??????
    I'm Canadian (where Hawaiian pizza was unfortunately invented) and even I know that's an abomination.
    So, a couple of points here.

    1) David loves pineapple and Hawaiian pizza. LOVES them. He begged for the jalapeno and pineapple pizza here. I stuck with the meat version.

    2) Full confession: I don't mind Hawaiian pizza. I don't love it, and usually will not order it myself. But I don't run screaming from the room, either. I like pineapple on a lot of things. Does this make me a monster?

    Next time park illegally. Probably worth the ticket.

    Maybe not the tow, so keep an eye out.
    I'll just have Drew guard the parking space.

    Or to fly through Chicago... ever.
    Yeah, there is that...

    I'm not surprised. Out of State = higher mailing cost and effort.
    Could be. Whatever the reason, I was thankful!

    Forgive? Sure! Forget?
    They stockpile these to use against you in the future.
    Don't I know it.

    Thanks again for another fun filled tour with the family! You always make it fun to read, Mark.
    Thank you!
    I really appreciate you and everyone else who takes the time to read these. I know that sometimes my chapters are really LONG. It amazes me that anyone would read all that, when there are so many other things you could be doing. So, thank you. I appreciate the time, the dialogue, and your friendship.
     

    afwdwfan

    DIS Dad #460
    Joined
    Apr 23, 2010
    In the morning, we met up with my cousins again for some coffee at a local shop, just because we enjoyed their company and wanted to hang out one more time before leaving. And by some miracle, they agreed to see us again.
    Well, there is a certain obligation for family...
    It wasn’t our first time here, but since we don’t have them on the East Coast, it makes for a more exotic fast food lunch than most other places. As for the food itself, it’s fine. Most Californians that travel east seem to speak of In N Out in hushed, rapturous tones. I find that the burger is decent, and the fries are lousy. But it all beats PB&J.
    Lousy fries is a big strike. But better than PB&J? Ok, I'll buy that one.
    Because I am a professional vacation planner in my mind, I had made a reservation for an arrival between 12:30 – 1:30 p.m. We got there right on time.
    Good call! :thumbsup2
    And we were promptly told that the lot was full, and we needed to drive down the road to the overflow lot.
    :headache:
    So we did, and the attendants there told us that the overflow lot was full, and that we would need to drive further down the road to the overflow overflow lot.
    :headache::faint:
    So we did, and the attendant there was pulling a barricade across the entrance, and waved us further down the road.
    🤬
    I’m going to go ahead and say that I don’t think they’ve solved the parking issue here.
    Not even close...
    The view was pretty great.
    ::yes::
    It’s a place of work, so there are no tours, but the lobby and plaza areas are open to the public, and it’s worth 15 minutes for a stop if you’re a Star Wars fan.
    Pretty cool to see the place and the memorabilia they have there though! Definitely worth a few minutes of time.
    Next thing I know, the officer is walking behind my fan and taking a photo of my license plate with his phone. He approached the door and I rolled down the window.

    “I got you for failure to yield and obey an officer,” he said.

    “Wait, what?” I said. “I don’t have any room to back up.”

    He turned his back on me and waved me off, saying something unintelligible. I just shook my head in disbelief. The light turned green, and I drove off.
    Moral of the story... light turns yellow, drop the hammer.
    Mark no function ice cream well without.
    Hulk smash!
    We ended up getting McFlurries from a McDonald’s inside a Walmart. Fail. Double fail, even.

    I bet Fenton’s Creamery was better.
    Oh, probably not. You might have dodged a bullet here... :rolleyes1
    Narrator: by June, he would be.
    :rotfl2::rotfl::lmao:
    P.S. I never received a ticket from San Francisco. I don’t know if the cop was lazy, or forgot, or found it was a rental and decided not to pursue it, or what.
    Well, hopefully it doesn't show up at some point with a late fee attached.
     

    Captain_Oblivious

    DIS Dad #257
    Joined
    Nov 10, 2008
    I agree that the fries leave a bit to be desired. I guess I find them a bit limp. DH loves In N Out - so now I order my fries "well done" and most of the time I enjoy them.....Unless they really cook them well done and they are like crisp potato sticks.
    That would still probably be preferable. The normal ones seem to have a shelf life of about 1.5 minutes.

    Always a stressful feeling being approached and then waiting for the ticket to arrive. We've had a couple of incidents in a rental car in another country and we never received a ticket.
    It must be too much trouble for them to bother following up.

    I second the thank you for sharing your family trips. Happy to see a bit more of your map getting filled in. I hope you share your experience from the summer and of course when you complete the family goal and make it to Alaska.
    We're working on it! Between college visits for Sarah, trying to squeeze in a visit to Universal Studios, and Alaska planning, there's a lot to juggle here.

    Happy to hear you ended up ticketless after a day with its share of frustrations.

    Can’t wait to read the new trip report and see the ever fuller map!
    Thanks for sticking with me! Hopefully I'll start the Pacific Northwest TR soon.

    I have never seen that movie. It seemed like it was a big deal in the day though. Didn't it win an Oscar for Best Picture? Of course so did "The Shape of Water" which I just found strange and couldn't sit through, so who am I to judge.
    I'm convinced movie critics are determined to show the general peons how much smarter they are, so they can never make the obvious choice for movie awards. After all, if the unwashed masses like something, it can't possibly be good.

    Shakespeare In Love beat out Saving Private Ryan for best picture. I mean...come on.

    Sounds like a plan. Anarchy at it's finest. Yeah, it doesn't seem like they fixed the parking problem.
    But they did get their 8 bucks out of me, so...problem solved!

    I've been known to circle back to the first parking lot on more than one occasion. It rarely pays off.
    Trying to find parking is one of my greatest pet peeves.
    It can be trying. I'll even take a bad parking space and walk, I don't care.

    It wouldn't surprise me to see a speeder bike zooming around the corner.
    With a teddy bear on it?

    If I was ever in the area, I would certainly try. It helps that there are no tours, so the ladies in my family wouldn't have to be bored for too long.
    It's just one office lobby with some memorabilia. Surely they can humor you for that long.

    I don't blame you at all. I would be much the same.
    Stupid overbearing cop.

    I would have given up at that point too.
    Even when I go to a mall or something, I often park way in the back where there are fewer cars, just so I don't have to deal with traffic. If it's going to be a struggle, I'd rather not try. That sounds like a real motivational greeting card.
    :rotfl2: I'm the same way, though. I'll take the easy way out, every time.

    Really enjoyed reading about your trip! Sorry your last day was so frustrating. But, getting no ticket was a plus! On your family travel map, looks like you've been in our neck of the woods - central IL. Can't imagine what was interesting there :-)
    We had spent the day in St. Louis and were on our way to Chicago. Needed someplace to spend the night, so we ended up around Springfield. That's about all I can remember.
     

    Terra Nova guy

    DIS Dad #811 Newfoundland, Canada
    Joined
    Nov 11, 2014

    pkondz

    . . Dis Dad #797 . . Hoping to get lucky
    Joined
    Mar 9, 2007
    You seem much more upset than I was.
    I'm over it now.
    Mostly because I have no idea now what this refers to.
    Agreed. It beats the tar out of PB&J, of course. Those fries have about a 1-minute shelf life. McDonald's wins going away on french fries.
    McD's… for all its faults (and there are many), rules at the chain French fries game.
    If only we could have seen the backside of water.
    This is categorically impossible.
    Sure did! Cost me 8 bucks for the pleasure of trying to create my own parking space.
    :sad2:
    And no way to get a refund. Pretty good scam they're running.
    I did, but much later.
    Much? So you looked like me at a border crossing?
    Drew needs to work on his t-shirt theme game.
    Kids these days. Hmph!
    He was a jerk. There were so many things I wanted to say to him, and I couldn't say any of them.
    You're brain must've been almost ready to explode.
    1) David loves pineapple and Hawaiian pizza. LOVES them. He begged for the jalapeno and pineapple pizza here. I stuck with the meat version.
    I never knew David was adopted.
    2) Full confession: I don't mind Hawaiian pizza. I don't love it, and usually will not order it myself. But I don't run screaming from the room, either. I like pineapple on a lot of things.
    I will eat one slice... then pick the pineapple off any subsequent slices. It's just... better without.
    Does this make me a monster?
    Of course it does.
    I'll just have Drew guard the parking space.
    :scared:
    I really appreciate you and everyone else who takes the time to read these. I know that sometimes my chapters are really LONG. It amazes me that anyone would read all that, when there are so many other things you could be doing. So, thank you. I appreciate the time, the dialogue, and your friendship.
    Heh. I could say the same. As a matter of fact, maybe I'll just copy and paste this into the end of my last overly-long chapter.
     
    Last edited:

    Steppesister

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Dec 27, 2013
    Hey Mark,

    Playing catch up all over the Boards today and it's ... a lot. I have no idea why but your photos are completely blocked for me. Suffrice to say I loved this TR and as always, look forward to the next one. And, as always, please PM when that happens. Hope all is well with your crew!
     

    juniorbugman

    <font color=blue>New car vs another cruise?? THAT
    Joined
    Aug 22, 2001
    Hey Mark,

    Playing catch up all over the Boards today and it's ... a lot. I have no idea why but your photos are completely blocked for me. Suffrice to say I loved this TR and as always, look forward to the next one. And, as always, please PM when that happens. Hope all is well with your crew!
    Hi Mark - I just checked as well and they are also blocked for me. I saw them the first time but now they are blocked.
     


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