Mrs Dim and I have a differing view of holidays. There are all kinds of examples of this, but the one I’m thinking of right now has to do with the journey versus the destination. For me, the holiday doesn’t begin until you get there. For her, the holiday begins as soon as you leave your house. That’s not to say that as we step out the door, Mrs Dim becomes some serene, floating goddess of benign goodwill. No, she can be tense and stressed, just like the rest of us. But she’s tense and stressed because there are things to be done. She’s also able to occasionally raise her head above the noise and nonsense of travelling weasels and see the beauty around her. I’m not.
I mentioned in an earlier post how the emigration went by in a blur of things to worry about next. This journey, though less epic in many ways, was still a challenge. We had to get out of our house with all our kit and dog, then drive to Sister-in-law’s where we would drop the dog. She would then drive us on to the local airport where we would catch a small plane for the hop down to Seattle, and then transfer to a proper plane for the ride to San Diego. Once we got there (assuming all went well up to that point) we’d pick up our hire car and try to navigate our way through an unfamilliar city to find the holiday home. THEN I could relax.
And with the benefit of hindsight, I can honestly say the journey was not that bad. We chose the Linden US Border crossing because it’s quieter, and the guards were in a jolly mood, actually smiling and giving us directions to the nearest coffee shop. Mrs Dim’s Sister and her husband live in a beautiful house that they built in a rural area near Bellingham, and their house has been a welcome refuge on several holidays and smells of peace and relaxation, even when you add three weasels and a dog. They produced a brilliant lunch and then we hopped back in the car for the trip to the airport.
Compact and bijou is an overstatement for this little airfield, but it’s an International Airport now, I think, and we waited patiently in line at one of the three check in desks while the lady in front bemoaned the regulations that would not allow her to bring her ukelele on as carry-on luggage. The plane was a decent-sized turbo-prop effort, not the bi-plane with seats strapped to the wings that I had been fearing, and we’d barely reached cruising height before we were heading back down into Seattle.
There was time to eat there before hustling to the next flight – we had to ride the train system to reach the right gate, which meant we could claim this was a planes, trains and automobiles holiday – and the next plane was a jet, but there was no tv. The weasels were a little disappointed, but the views were good through the windows, and the fizzy drinks were free and plentiful.
By the time we landed at San Diego airport, I was pretty much done. I’d not found the book I was looking for at Seattle, so I’d spent the flight twiddling my thumbs and doing far too much thinking. But the queues were loooong for the rental cars, and it was dark night by the time we got strapped in and launched off onto unknown roads. Luckily the directions were good, and we reached the house with only one stop for milk and sandwiches as breakfast offerings.
The house is incredible. When I have the resources at my fingertips again I’ll include the link, because you should come and stay here. It’s palatial, so close to the sea it’s obscene, and the local cafe’s do amazing breakfasts. The place is clean, the beds are comfortable and there are all the conveniences of home (including wireless, hence the holiday post….)
I’m writing this on Wednesday, by which time we’ve had our acclimatisation day (cafe, beach, big tea) and Middle Weasel’s Birthday (late breakfast, LEGOLAND, big tea) and now they’ve left me to write while they head for the beach again. I have plays to work on, of course, and reviews I could be doing, but as soon as I’m done with this post, I shall be striding off to the beach after them – this is a family holiday after all, and whatever the differences in expectations Mrs Dim and I have about holidays, we both want them to be full-family affairs.
What we ate on the balcony before we had tea on the balcony....