Mister Eclectic (howeird) wrote,
Mister Eclectic

Sandy Eggo Day 1 (Saturday)

Packed too light at first, the folding day pack was too flimsy, so I grabbed the Interop day pack which has a built-in laptop section. By reflex I put the netbook in there, but that made it heavy so I took it out again. I only needed the phone for the internets this trip. Took Central to the park & ride lot I've been using for the past 15 years, and it was locked up. There were plenty of cars in there, but not nearly as many as usual, and it seems the new landlord Enterprise (Budget used to own it) is using it to store in-transit rental cars.

So I went onto the airport grounds but could not figure out how to get to the parking garage, so I parked in the too-expensive daily lot, which is very close to the Southwest terminal. That worked out well.

As usual I was there way early, thought about upgrading but they wanted $166, so I was in section B 52, which landed me a seat by the window in the second to last row. The last row was occupied by a WASP man, his foreign wife, and two little girls who were competing to see which one of them could kick a hole in the back of my seat quickest. They also had the "whine till Daddy says yes" thing down to a science, and it took the WASP middle-age male flight attendant three minutes to get them to put the tray back up, after which they cried as lot.

They were endlessly entertaining, too bad the flight is only an hour and a half.

I had no plan for how to get from the airport to the park to collect my theater ticket, so I asked at Information. She said to take the airport bus downtown (senior rate is $1.10 and I'm old enough there), then catch the #3 or #7 and get off at Laurel and walk into the park, the theater would be right near the entrance.

I didn't have any change, so I bought something at Starbucks which gave me a couple of quarters, I figured 15 cents was not a huge sacrifice. I got the #7 (no transfers on this system so it cost another $1.25), and when we passed the zoo and still had not gotten to Laurel I knew something was wrong, so I got off, walked three blocks to the zoo asked how to get to the theater from there. There is supposed to be a free tram, but there are no stops marked anywhere, and the info person said they don't come to the zoo. WTF? But he gave me a map, and pointed to a path. The theater is all the way on the other side of the park from the zoo, directly across.

That turned out to be more than a mile.

Signage in the park sucks. They have maps lost of places, and some of them have "you are here" markers, but as soon as you leave the map you are on your own. I was going to The Old Globe Theater so I thought I'd hit pay dirt when I started following Old Globe Road, but it dead-ended behind the botanical gardens.

Finally found it near the art museum, there was a sign which you pretty much had to trip over to see. Got my ticket, and headed for the park exit, the plan being to catch a bus to the hotel. Google maps told me the #3 bus, at Juniper and 4th. That was about a mile from the museum. No tram, no buses run into the park from that direction. When I sat down at the bus stop I looked up the hotel again, saw it was only 5 minutes' walk away, so I walked (the bus passed me just as I left the stop). 

The hotel did not have my reservation, but they had rooms at the rate I'd seen online (I had not prepaid) which was $69 plus the trimmings, on the AAA discount. Nice enough room, queen bed, small balcony overlooking the street, microwave and fridge in the bathroom. Air control unit cleverly hidden behind the very nice long desk. Flat screen TV connected directly to cable (no cable box), inside a lovely wood cabinet. Huge walk-in closet. Pretty nice for the price. America's Best Value Inn, I'd recommend them except then they would always be booked and I'd never get a chance to stay there again.

Vegged for a couple of hours, then walked a few blocks to a restaurant called Hob Nob Hill, which was very nice, had the lamb shank which was excellent and reasonably priced, which included delicious mint sauce.

They called a cab for me, which I took to the park, about two blocks from the theater is as close as cars can get. $6 was well worth it.

I was half an hour early, so I people watched and took some photos of the buildings until the doors opened. Lovely fairly new theater, comfortable seats but could use more leg room. I was dead center in the Orchestra section, and at curtain time it looked like there would be no one in front of me. But just as 8 a ton of people poured in, and after 10 minutes the house was full. And here I thought Bay Area people were bad about showing up at the last minute.

The show was Allegiance, a musical set in a Japanese interment camp in Wyoming during WWII. I'll have a separate review in a day or three, but for now, let me just say George Takei has much better acting (and singing) chops than they ever let Sulu display, Philippina Lea Salonga and Chinese-American Telly Leung gave tour-de-force performances as Japanese-American siblings, and the show has changed a lot since I saw an investor's preview in May 2010, some for the better, some not so much. It is a powerful, emotional story, my eyes were not dry from the second minute till the end. SOme of that was not from the show itself, but from the fact that when I lived in Seattle some of my high school friends' parents had lived through that, and I had no idea how horrible it had been. It made me truly ashamed to be American. The Kubotas were neighbors, their grandchildren were friends of my sisters. My oldest sister was on Seattle's first sister city committee - the city was Kobe, Japan. The there was my high school crush, Mary Tahara and her mother Rose.  And so on. Anyway, the show was Worth Full Price™, which includes the $100 ticket, the flight from SAN, bus fare, taxi fare, the hotel, the dinner and all that walking.

After the show there were no taxis anywhere, so I walked all the way back to the hotel in an intermittent light drizzle, which was not so bad, it was still about 67°, the streets are well lighted and there were a lot of Our Nation's Youth in various states of punk-ish dress heading into the park for some nefarious Saturday night purpose or other.

Back to the room, took me a while to get to sleep, ­ but it was a comfortable bed,  so I was asleep before midnight.
Tags: theater, travel

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