Thumbs up: I love LA. Well, I like it just fine. Love would be too strong a word but I didn’t know any song lyrics for my more tepid liking.
Thumbs up: Flights went well. Southwest held together:) Thumbs down for uncomfortable airplane seats.
Thumbs down: Our GPS apparently does NOT love LA. I’ve never encountered so many navigation issues before. Thumbs way up for my husband who drove and handled things admirably, getting us where we needed to be with only a few cars honking at us. Thumbs up that the GPS came through in the end and took us a back route to the airport, avoiding the jam-packed highway, and sailing through both sketchy and lovely neighborhoods.
Thumbs up: In-n-Out Burger. Number one rated restaurant, right near the airport when we arrived with our tummies telling us it was two hours past lunch time, had to check it out. They sell burgers. And cheeseburgers. And double burgers. So, yeah, it was gonna be burgers for lunch. And, thumbs up, or down, depending on how you look at it, that the calorie count was on the menu! I got the 480 calorie cheeseburger and my concession to my healthier eating goals was to take off the top bun. It was yummy. For me, it lived up to the hype. I tried two of my son’s and husband’s fries which did not live up to any hype at all. The drive-through line wrapped around the block but, thumbs up, we found a lone parking spot so ordered inside and ate outside in the California sun. Thumbs up for sunscreen that fits in the security-sized travel baggie.
Thumbs down: Post-prom, sleep deprived teen. He kept it together most of the first day despite running on only a couple hours of sleep and having sore feet from ill-fitting tuxedo-rental shoes. The worst moments came when he wanted to nap and his hungry parents wanted to eat dinner. Tired teen met hungry parents in an epic battle of wills, and I just kept telling myself to be patient. The evening ended win-win. Teen was reluctantly dragged to a restaurant near campus so navigationally-challenged parents could reconnoiter for the next day and luckily we spotted a burrito place nearby so teen could eat something fast and more to his liking.
Thumbs up: For our after-dinner drive around the campus perimeter. Which direction should a mother raise her thumbs in response to the campus being gated all the way around?
Thumbs high: “High” as in “altered mental state.” Venice Beach, where we played tourist, featured a plethora of “head shops” and medical marijuana doctors on call for walk-ins. And lots of cheap sunglasses, hats, and suggestively sloganed T-shirts for sale. My teen wanted some time to wander without his parents; thumbs up he did not return with a tattoo or a purchase that wouldn’t make it through airport security.
Thumbs up: I’ve never packed so light in my life! Not even an extra book with me in case I didn’t like the first one. And only the one pair of shoes on my feet, much as I hate to wear them through airport security and on the plane. No workout clothes:( I even made my shirt do double duty and wore it to bed. My one concession – an extra pair of underwear, which I never travel without. Murphy’s Law says if you have it you won’t need it.
Thumbs down: Paying for internet at out hotel. Hello Hilton!!!
Thumbs down: The two-hour time difference. Hard for my rumbling belly (although I packed lots of snacks in anticipation) and hard for this morning person. So here I sit on the floor in the dark, typing, while my husband and son sleep. I take that back; hubby is laying in bed watching a move on his smart phone with headphones in. Thumbs up for typing class back in the dark ages so my fingers can fly across the keyboard in the dark hotel room:)
Thumbs down: Drinking water. Any one else limit water intake when traveling because of the hassles of airplane and public restrooms?
Thumbs up: USC. Hubby and I both liked it. Thumbs down for our recalcitrant teen who frustrated me no end with his unwillingness to talk about his own impressions. I’m practicing more maternal patience as I remind myself that it is all about him right now.
Thumbs down: The tasty meal we were served for lunch on campus. Yes, there was salad. Yes, there were veggies. I ate plenty of both. But the only protein was some Chinese-style chicken – yummy but breaded and maybe fried. Thumbs up that I had no problem skipping the decadent desserts offered. Thumbs neutral, IMO, that I went off plan with my airport dinner. Nothing horrible but not on plan. And thumbs down that I most definitely snacked more than my physical hunger demanded on the flights. What it is about flying that makes me want to eat? The boredom, maybe? The frustration?
Thumbs up: Home sweet home. Dorothy was right.