When you’re traveling, is a good night’s sleep good luck or good planning? Or could it be because you’re too exhausted to do anything else?
We Gotta Get Out of LA
As we surrendered to Navi (the GPS) and headed north, I was fantasizing about pillows and linen,but my job as navigator wasn’t over. About the time we got to Thousand Oaks, Bill wanted to eat. Food was just about the last thing I wanted, but through experience I’ve learned, when Bill wants food I’d better find a restaurant.
Do you remember what life was like before our electronic traveling friends? You drove along hoping to see a sign on the side of the road, but you’d never just pull off the road, because you might never figure out how to get back. Using that method, I might have made it to Carpenteria without having to stop, but no, Bill tells me to get out my phone. Lo and behold, Google Local tells me there’s a BJ’s in the neighborhood and Bill takes the next exit. We kept Navi pointed towards Carpenteria and used Local to get to BJ’s.
Now I really want to whine and complain about how awful it was, because I was really tired and not very hungry, but we shared BJ’s new Roast Beef Dip Sandwich, and I’ve got to be honest with you, it was really good. In my day we called them French Dip Sandwiches, but I guess in this new politically-correct world, that might have some negative connotation – like all French people are dips. Either that or some teenager planning their menu didn’t know their au jus from their assembly line.
A Reward at the End of our Drive
Sandwich happily consumed, we drove on to Carpenteria and found the Holiday Inn Express where I’d made our reservations. This was an older property, but completely renovated, so you had all the charm of the old with all the convenience of the new. The desk clerk checked us in like a champ, then we found a parking place close to our room and we moved ourselves in.
The room was wonderful. A small seating area and mini-kitchen were separated from the bed by an attractive divider. The furniture was new, but some older decorative touches were carried into the new design to add character. We were very happy.
I would have loved to crawl in bed oblivious to everything, but I knew the drill. I wake up at six and Bill doesn’t. I’d get up raring to go and Bill would be livid at my rattling around, if I didn’t get things ready ahead of time. So, with a foggy brain I started re-organizing everything and getting ready for the rest of the trip, because packing for a flight and packing for a road trip are two different things.
Those gifts that took up half my suitcase? Well they were moved to the tote-bag. All my shoes, belts and accessories? I’d packed a fold-up nylon bag for them. Pretty much everything else we packed needed to be shuffled around, too. When I’d reorganized everything to suit me, I pulled out my exercise gear and an outfit for the next day, then fell into bed. I was asleep before my head hit the pillow.
A Bright New Day
Yes, I did wake up at six. I slithered into my workout clothes and found the exercise room – a nice one I might add. They didn’t have a recumbent stationary bike, like I do at home, but the treadmills were in good working order and I slammed out an hour of cardio. Then I was starving, so I went to the breakfast bar.
Let me tell you this – Holiday Inn Express rocks their breakfast buffet. My particular favorite is their cinnamon rolls. But they have everything from bacon and eggs to a pancake machine to hot biscuits. They also have healthy things, so with my single cinnamon roll I had a boiled egg, yogurt and apple juice.
I returned to the room and Bill was stirring, so I returned to the breakfast bar with him – not to eat, just for companionship. He got breakfast down, we got ready for the day and headed out.
Vacation Day One is ahead and it was a great one, so come back next week.