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Sal's Windshield Tour of San Diego

Sal Cianci, a classmate at the Army War College and resident of San Diego, was kind enough to give Cherie and me a tour of the San Diego area shortly after we moved there. Though the day was overcast with a marine layer (hey, I'm learned the lingo), the beach and ocean scenery were breathtaking. We started with breakfast on Shelter Island by one of the marinas. A shrimp omelette and a Clam Benedict were some of the offerings on the menu. (Carrying the nautical theme further, the rest rooms were labeled "Buoys" and "Gulls." Oh, pleeease!) Then we drove around Harbor Island; took in an aerial view from the 40th floor of the Hyatt Hotel downtown; watched an anti-establishment protest against Starbucks Coffee at a 1950's-feeling Ocean Beach; sipped margaritas and huricanes from the rooftop patio of a restaurant at Pacific Beach; drove the winding roads of La Jolla to the 360 lookout at Soledad mountain; observed the egrets lounging in the marsh of the San Diego river preserve; sifted through the marine life in a tidal pool at Cabrillo National Monument and returned to Point Loma (Sal's neighborhood) for dinner at a neighborhood cafe. Sal's got this tour thing down pat, and he loves to show off his hometown. After walking the beaches, the cliffs, and the streets of San Diego, I can see why.

Red Sails Inn Cherie enjoys the conversation and the scenery over coffee and breakfast by the marina. I'm thinkin': "hey, what if you're from Indonesia and you have to use the rest room. Which one ya gonna go in?" We were joined at our table by several locals: local sea gulls, local sparrows, and local pidgeons. If it wasn't for the sign, we would have been tempted to feed our feathered friends. But then again, they don't bother to use the Gulls room.
Sal told Cherie she can show off this photo and tell her friends she has a new man in her life. Now I'm worried? Sal and Cherie
Ahoy Mark, this one's for you. California wheels.
Sal takes a pause at Ocean Beach. The street ends at the ocean in the background. Actually, it wasn't the sea breeze we were smelling. Cherie was so busy looking around her, she wasn't watching where she was walking, and unfortunately, she was following in the footsteps of an unconstipated dog. Poor Sal, he's wondering if he'll have to clean his car's carpeting. Poor me, I'm scraping the brown stuff off of Cherie's shoe with a stick. Poor Cherie, she's trying to look non-chalant with oozies on her shoe. It's all a part of California Dreamin'. Ocean Beach
Canes Patio It's time to slake our thirsts and check out the beach bodies at 'Canes.
Why is this man smiling? Must be those beach bodies. Is that a glint in his eye? Sal at Canes
Tidal Pool Land's end is variated along the San Diego coast. Some places have miles of wide, beautiful beach; others offer dramatic cliffs and pounding surf. This spot, along the Cabrillo National Monument at the mouth of the harbor area, includes a tidal pool where you can find marine life lingering after the tide rolls out.
Far prettier than a mermaid, I found this wind-blown beauty along the coast. Cherie at Cabrillo
Lighthouse Cherie and Sal check out a lighthouse that dates back to the 1850's.
Lastly, the views from Sal's condo in Point Loma. He took us on a tour of his house, then pulled down a stairway leading, I thought, to his attic (thanks, Sal, but I'm really not keen on seeing the attic). Turns out, it leads to his roof-top patio, where in one direction he can see the San Diego harbor and skyline (better on a sunny day or clear night no doubt), and in the other he can overlook the entrance courtyard and the hills of Point Loma. Sal's Skyline Sal's Courtyard

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