This summer gave me chance to fly to neighboring California state with my daughter and mother.
We spent most of our two-week trip under the scorching sun enjoying sceneries of beach, lake, mountain, bridge, church, garden, museum and theme parks. We also got the chance to use the train and public transport.
Trip was highlighted by many reconnections. First of which was meeting up with cousins I haven’t seen for two decades.
We gathered at the beautiful home of Cherry and Melvin in the mountaneous Moreno Valley.
We also had our version of American Idol in karaoke challenge and celebrated cousin Marice’s birthday.
After feasting on sumptuous Filipino dishes, we took a side trip to magestic Lake Perris which was ten minutes away.
My daughter’s ultimate wish in this trip was to visit the Harry Potter attrraction at the Universal Studios in Los Angeles.
Baxa family was so kind to spoil her. For that, we had to leave early in the morning to avoid traffic jam going to the big city.
We lined up for almost two hours under the sun to enter the Hogwart’s castle.
Deona took the Flight to Hippogriff with Anthony. He was also our guard from the Walking Dead Zombies.
Our remaining days were spent in San Diego.
Called “the birthplace of California”, San Diego is rich in historical significance.
What best way to welcome us in this Mexico adjacent city but a treat to a delicious Tijuana style burritos and tacos and lobster dishes. My friend Agnes took us to Rockin Baja Lobster followed by a stroll around Old Town.
While in San diego, Tita Helen and son Patrick opened their lovely home (with a wide garden full of cactus and succulents) for us to stay.
We also got the chance to meet with some relatives from the Arenas clan.
Driving around San Diego, we stopped by the USS Mid Way Naval aircraft Museum and enjoyed sightseeing at nearby Sea Port and Coronado Beach.
We strolled around enjoying lavish gardens and rich architectural designs in Balboa Park and met some Pinoys at the Filipino heritage celebration,
It was relaxing communing with nature as we followed and fed the ducks at the beautiful Santee Lake.
Families flock to visit San Diego because of the popular theme park Sea World.
Nanay’s old time friend Tita Norma and husband Tito Cris were generous to take us there.
Deona fell in love with dolphins, sea lions and penguins and found a new friend in sweet Janine.
My mother has always wanted to come to San Diego to see Tita Norma. Through Facebook, they were able to cross path.
The whole Susana family gave us very warm welcome and VIP accommodations. They also prepared the best food !
Mother tries to visit a church everytime she goes to a new place. We went to the Mission Basilica San Diego de Alcala, a Franciscan church built in 1700.
Tito Cris was also kind to take us to Las Americas Premium Outlet on the Mexico–United States border and Naval Exchange shopping Centre.
In our last stop before we head home, Tito Boy and Tita Nada generously let us stay in their lovely mansion and became our friendly tourist guide.
We drove around Mount Cabrillo, Point Loma and Mount Soledad and watched whales in La Jolla with Mommy Winnie and Winnipeg friends Mayeth and Cel.
In the evening prior to our flight going home, we went with them and their children at the Naval Base Bowling Lane (where only US Naval officers like Tito Boy can avail of).
I came home five shades darker and five pounds heavier after the trip. Salamat po sa mga naging bahagi ng magagandang ala-ala sa trip na ito.
As they always say, the tan will go away but the memories will stay a lifetime.