San Diego, Part One

September 19th, 2011

I had called ahead, and arranged an appointment for Curiosity with a mechanic, who had been suggested by the local HU community. The mechanic was in Escondido, but I decided to get a hotel right downtown San Diego. This was so I could walk to stuff I wanted to see, mainly the Zoo.

San Diego’s Zoo is pretty famous. I mean, I don’t know much about zoos, but I have heard about San Diego’s. A friend had also suggested the new Midway Aircraft Carrier museum. I thought for a while I could do both in one day, but I was off season and neither was open very long.

The appointment was for the 20th, Tuesday, when the shop opened at 9am. I arrived in San Diego the evening of the 18th, so I had a full day. I was up early enough to walk to the Zoo and be there when it opened.

What I didn’t know was the route I walked to get to the Zoo was through Balboa Park. I didn’t know anything about it, and the architecture caught my attention.



There are several museums scattered throughout the park, as well as gardens and restaurants. But I was zoo focused and didn’t lose too much time. Well, some time, just not too much. The zoo was open when I got there.

I…don’t really know what I was expecting. I mean, it’s a zoo, so animals in little enclosed areas with signs saying what they are, and where they are from, all the usual stuff. And that was there, but instead of the wide paved walkways that I was also expecting (it is what the zoo in Milwaukee has anyway) the visitors generally were restricted to narrower paths, and the animal exhibits just sort of popped out.

Of course, if you are at the San Diego Zoo one of the things you have to go and see are the pandas. The sign said there are 27 pandas in captivity out of China, and the San Diego zoo has 3.


Unsurpisingly, the panda exhibit was packed with people.


who generally didn’t want to move out of the way. I guess I can understand, more or less.

I didn’t just see the Pandas, of course, but I am also not going to share my 160ish pictures of animals from the day, since even I would find it boring. Here is a sample, though.


I stayed at the zoo for about six hours. As the day wore on the animals settled down and more of the habitats seemed empty. I had orange chicken for lunch, but decided I wasn’t going to eat dinner in the zoo (it was, as you might expect, expensive). Since I wasn’t seeing many animals anymore, and the zoo was closing in an hour or so, I left and headed back downtown towards Little Italy for dinner. The Lasagna was wonderful.

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