John is working all day today at the conference. I walked him to the convention center at 7am and then headed back to the hotel. Since nothing is open yet and my memory card is full, I decided to do some camera/computer housekeeping. And while I'm organizing all of these pictures from yesterday, I'll go ahead and share some of our adventures with you now.
Yesterday, the only mandatory thing on our agenda was checking in with the ESRI people. They basically just wanted all of the student assistants to come by so that they could make sure everyone arrived in the city safely. John wasn't feeling very well, so after checking in we decided to head back toward the hotel, checking out Padre Stadium on the way:We ate breakfast at the hotel restaurant. We ate TOO much, which didn't help John feel any better. We ended up running into a guy that was in boy scouts with John when they were kids, so that was really bizarre. They went to middle and high school together and hadn't seen each other since. John initially thought that perhaps his old amigo was also there for the ESRI conference but as it turns out, he's here working the lights for Avenue Q, which just happens to be here on tour. Woah! I remember once running into my friend Ginny in Canterbury, England. We were both students at SFA who just happened to be visiting the same cathedral on the same day at the same time. I had no idea that she was also abroad! It really is a small world. We spent quite a bit of the day napping, waiting for John to feel up for adventures. We had an exhausting travel day the day before, so I think we really needed the rest.
I napped for a little while and then turned on the TV. I watched some stuff on the Food Network before switching over to AMC. I started watching The Invitation and got invested. John woke up, but I wouldn't let us leave until the movie was over. It was 4:30 before we finally felt up to walking around again. We decided to go back and explore more of Balboa Park. Here's a view of the city on the way: Balboa Park entrance:
Since it was so late in the afternoon, all the museums and things were pretty much starting to close shop. Still, we decided to wander around and appreciate the gardens.
Lily/Koi Pond -
We spent a lot of time in a beautiful rose garden. This was one of our favorite varieties, called "Burgundy Iceberg"
John set the camera on a timer so that we could snap a photo of the two of us in the garden.
After resting a bit with the roses, we decided to move on. We came across some jungle paths and decided to explore them -
We had a lot of fun exploring until...
I heard John scream. In an instant, he was being dragged away by a man-eating plant's serpentine tentacles. It was horrifying. I had time to snap this photo before our life-and-death wrestling match with the plant.
In the end, we had to give up all the cash and change in our pockets to appease the plant. As it turns out, it didn't want to eat John at all - it just wanted to take our money. Probably to buy liquor. Despicable. It was getting late and darkness was upon us. Once John was freed from the plant, we decided to head back to the hotel. We snapped a few pictures of the bridge we would be crossing to get back.
View of Cabrillo Bridge:
On our way back to the hotel, we walked through a dog park where we saw this hummingbird hanging out on a branch. When he looked at us head-on, you could see beautiful scarlet patches on his neck and forehead. John and I had never seen a hummingbird perched anywhere before, so this was a real treat. This little guy just sat there and sat there as I got closer and closer to snap a photo. I wish I had taken my big zoom lens on our walk!You can see the scarlet patches in this really out-of-focus shot:
It was John's turn to pick a dinner spot and he really felt like some Mediterranean. We ate at this little hole-in-the-wall place called Sultan Shawarma that had some awesome lentil soup. By the time we got to the hotel, we were exhausted. As we were settling into bed, we heard some really loud booming sounds outside. When we got up to investigate, we were greeted by this unexpected fireworks display!
This is the view from our hotel room window. What a delightful end to an exhausting day!
Be sure to check back tomorrow for a recap of the adventures we have today!