Thursday, February 07, 2008

California Dreamin'

Does anybody else remember this tv show? It was definitely in that prime era of TNBC....Saturday mornings rocked, baby, with Saved By The Bell, Hang Time, City Guys...and of course California Dreams: Please feel free to watch the opening credits and feel 13 again.

Anyway. That's all just to prove that the glamour and wonder of California is ingrained in us at a tender age here in the US of A...Saved By The Bell was all about California grooviness, too, if you'll remember. And who among us didn't, at some point, see about 5 billion episodes of Saved By The Bell?

So last November, when Neil and I flew out to LA for vacation, it was finally my chance to see all of this magic in person. And you know what? Even though, somehow, I didn't spend my time singing in a band at a hip beach club or playing beach volleyball with Zack Morris (AND I didn't wake up blonde, tan, and a size 2! What was that about????), there was definitely something different about California. It's one of those places where the air is filled with opportunity(because you CAN get discovered on a random street corner, right?)...and it's surreal to see the places that have formally been bound to your tv screen as reality.

We had so much fun...and since it was just the two of us, we were constantly on the go. (And we did crash the second we walked into the hotel room. Ok, I crashed the second I sat down anywhere, but there wasn't much I could do about that. Baby-in-uterus still trumps vacation adrenaline, apparently.) We crammed in at least 4 theme parks, a zoo, museums, tourist-y celebrity tours, a Laker's game, a showing of Wicked (amazing, by the way)....and we even got to have a personal tour from an insider. Our visit with the always wonderful Ms. BCT was definitely a highlight.

My favorite museum, by the way, was in the original Max Factor was all about historical Hollywood and so much of it was preserved from the days when Lucille Ball, Judy Garland, and other amazing actresses would visit to get their make-up done for their shows. I love the classic Hollywood days, so seeing so much original memorabilia was a thrill for me.

I could go on and on about the trip, but I won't pile on the details. I will, however, share a few pictures! Because in these days of cold winter weather, California Dreamin' is a wonderful way to go...

We have arrived! We start dodging We dodged pretty well, by the way. We somehow didn't end up on a single magazine cover or news broadcast.

And our first awesome puchase in Hollywood? Band-aids. Yep. Ten minutes upon arriving on Hollywood Blvd, I'm in a pharmacy because my shoes are not all that broken in. Woo-hoo! Bring it ON, vacation!

There she is! My long-time friend turned Hollywood local, giving us our first California meal.

The Chinese Theatre, which is where you'll find all of those infamous hand and foot prints. The inside is even more impressive than the outside.

And below you'll see my husband jumping into action during our visit to the Hollywood Wax Museum. Spidey's energy was contagious. Sorry that I don't know how to rotate the picture with this Blogger machinery.

Da-du-dudu,, that's the theme song to Beverly Hills, 90210 you're hearing in your head, too - right?

And a view from those Hollywood hills of LA...

And why can't we all live in places where superheroes mingle on the streets? That's Captain America, the Flash, and Batman all in one huddle. Rest easy, LA. You're well protected.

Mr. Neil at skies, blue water, and still representing the Tarheel Blue on the hat. You can take the Heels out of North Carolina, know the rest.The drive down to San Diego was gorgeous. Ocean on one side and the beginning of mountains on the other...I was all 'ooh! ahhhh!' the entire way. The pictures from the (moving) car don't begin to do it all justice.The panda is at the San Diego Zoo and too sweet to resist. I wanted to carry him home with me, but I couldn't figure out where I'd buy bamboo once I got him here. And...palm trees. Because it was, after all, California.


heather said...

I'm with ya on the California lovin'. I told my husband that we should move there. He said we'd only be able to afford a cardboard shack. He seemed to think there's a problem with that, but when you have the beach, who needs more than cardboard?
I'm also a big fan of Wicked--musicals make me happy.
Thanks for stopping by and sharing my writerly angst. I have enough of it to go around!

Luisa Perkins said...

Just lovely! I grew up in California. I'm posting about our memories of Jamaica tomorrow.

Aziza said...

You write very well.