This week we find ourselves saying farewell to San Diego for the second time on our 8 month journey. Last May we said goodbye to the city after selling everything we owned and hitting the road for full time life on wheels. Now, 36 weeks later, we have another week full of memories in this perfect SoCal city to look back on as we continue down the road.
Arriving into town late Wednesday night, we set alarms and hopped into bed quickly in preparation for the very busy Thursday ahead. The comfortable night’s sleep ended all too quickly when the alarms went off and our feet hit the ground. Jim cooked breakfast and made coffee while Heather got ready for a day in the office for the first time in months. Today was the annual kickoff meeting for the 2017 fiscal year, and Heather was excited about being back on the team she called family for years before hitting the road.
While Heather spent the day in the office pretending like she was a normal person who doesn’t live in an RV, Jim found himself glued to his laptop at the Carlsbad City Library, working on the website and making some updates to his athletes’ annual training plans in the serenity (and luxury that is electricity and WiFi!) of this quiet public workspace.
After a solid day of work, Jim left the library to meet up with Heather’s office crew at their happy hour engagement. These are some of the best, kindest, and most sincere people who have welcomed Jim into several of their work events even before Heather became Mrs. Burho. Happy hour was full of hilarious stories which made for non-stop laughter and smiles as usual. The group even came out and took a tour of Bertha, setting a new record for total number of people in Bertha at the same time. The crew all signed our chalkboard refrigerator before we said our goodbyes and headed to Julie’s house, a friend who lives right there in Carlsbad just off the water.
Julie had a 3 day Oversized Vehicle Parking Permit all ready for us when we arrived at her house late Thursday so after some parking magic, Bertha had her first beachfront address! We spent about an hour with Julie and her boyfriend Brendan that evening before calling it a night and heading to bed. Between the long day of work, the fiesta that was happy hour, and catching up with these two, sliding into bed for a good night’s sleep was a most welcoming endeavor.
Our feet hit the ground early Friday morning and after breakfast, Heather headed out on the picture perfect SoCal beach for a long run down the coast and back. Our training schedule has been so chaotic lately with the travel and time constraints we can’t seem to escape, so the call of the beach and perfect weather really help to nudge us outside to train.
Jim spent the entire day working in Bertha while Heather worked on her own to-do list. After each of us filled our day apart catching up with our respective individual tasks, we headed in to spend the evening with Julie and Brendan. After dinner we spent the evening catching up, watching TV, and playing games with them, going couple vs. couple in a cutthroat game of Pictionary. Julie is something of an artist, making a quick trip of the game board before getting stuck on the last square. Heather and Jim kept at it and eventually had the comeback of the century, catching them to win a close finish after another full night of laughs.
Saturday we awoke in Bertha beachside again, loving every second of the perfect weather and sounds of the ocean. Heather met up with a friend for a long overdue relaxing session of yoga while Jim laced up his running shoes and hit the coast for some training miles. After our health and fitness morning, Heather and Julie took off for the local breakfast hotspot and came back with some of the best breakfast burritos either of us had ever had. While we can’t be sure what it is that makes burritos the perfect food, we’re certainly not complaining at the frequency with which we have them here in the magnificent southwest. The volunteer breakfast run was well appreciated by Jim, who had made plans to again work all day in Bertha and take a chunk of hours out of the overwhelming workload that continues to sit between where his business is now and where he’s trying to take it.
After brunch, Jim headed back to work while Heather headed out to meet up with some other girlfriends, Jessica and Erina, for some beach bike riding down the boardwalk in the beautiful San Diego sun. They spent a couple of hours cruising the bay and the beach boardwalk, people watching and stopping once or twice for cocktail with a view.
Sunday was another long, full work day for Jim while Heather continued to catch up with her good friends she’s been away from for so long. She met up with Nate and his wife, Ashley, and Robbie and his girlfriend, Michelle, at Blind Lady Alehouse – one of their favorite local watering holes from days past. We shared some pizza, loaded fries, and some magical local San Diego brews before bidding farewell once again.
With our epic beachfront parking pass expiring today, we topped off Bertha’s fresh water tank (thanks, Julie and Brendan!) and dumped our waste tanks at the free marina dump en route back towards North Park, where we lived before embarking on our full time RV journey last year. Since we still have California driver’s licenses, Bertha, Kerry (the trailer), and Eeyore (the motorcycle) all have California plates and registration, and Bertha is still registered in the San Diego oversize vehicle temporary overnight parking system, we were able to easily obtain a 3-day parking pass right there in our old ‘hood. Once parked and secured, we settled in for the start of a fresh new week.
Monday morning we woke and got started on quickly taking care of some business so we could spend the day with Heather’s parents who had just driven into town on their way home to Phoenix from some SoCal traveling of their own. We sat on a grassy overlook in lovely La Jolla, catching up over lunch, wine, and eventually a serene San Diego sunset. After the sun went down and the chilly air came rushing in, we headed a few blocks up the road to eat dinner at Sammy’s Woodfired Pizza. We burned off our stuffing of delicious pizza and salad on our walk back to the parents’ beachside accommodations. Another great day with family ended with goodbyes and a motorcycle ride back to Bertha and her lifeless battery system.
Bertha’s electric problems have continued to worsen, sadly, and by Monday we were pretty much battery-less. The water pump pushes water at a trickle out of each small faucet and the lights emit only a faint orange glow. With time opening up next week, Jim will be getting ready to finally put in some solid troubleshooting hours and hopefully get us fixed up and back in proper working order. Until then, a flip of the generator switch at least provides us with all the electricity we need for about $1.50 an hour.
We continue our last couple of days in San Diego this week, saying farewell Thursday and heading up to NorCal for the next phase of our travels. Next week we’ll also be getting back on our Tuesday Blog Day routine, so these random midweek updates will be a thing of the past. It’s been so great to catch up with so many family and friends the past 3 months, but we’re finally ready to get back to some normalcy and engage ourselves in a life that’s a bit more productive towards our bigger life goals. It’s hard to leave this perfect weather and comfort of friends and family, but we are ready to be two peas in a pod named Bertha again, making our way side by side, just the two of us.
Until next time, live happy and healthy!
Total RV Trip Miles: 13,956.2