Saturday, January 28, 2012

Mid-winter blues...

Despite the fact we've had no snow, I've found myself saddled with the mid-winter blues.  Being inside all the time, arguing with myself over what to wear for either a 60 degree day or a 20 degree day and just wanting to throw open the windows and get some fresh air and sun...while all my thoughts turn to San Diego in five weeks, it's going by so sloooowly.

I cashed in two "thank you for posting on Fodors, we've used your quote in another guide book" offers to get two new guide books for myself: Germany 2012 and The Ultimate Safari Planning Guide.  Not that I have any intention of doing either this year.  Well, ok, let's not kid ourselves here, I am seriously contemplating Germany in September.  The safari guide, though, is calling to me.  I'd earmarked that trip for The Next Milestone Birthday, but I'm not sure I can wait another 8 years to execute the plan!

Germany is sort of falling into place in my mind.  I'd fly into Munich for 4 days or so, fly to Berlin for 5 days (day trips to Dresden and Brunswick for the Vermeers) then fly to Frankfurt and spend a 10 hour layover on the ground there just to see its Vermeer.  My sister is thinking of joining me, so it could be the next chapter of the Sisterly Quest for Vermeer tour.  We'll see.  I have the Boston Globe Travel Show coming up in a few weeks; who knows what ideas I'll find there that will sway me....

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

San Diego it is!

I bit the bullet on Sunday and booked the trip to San Diego with my fellow panda-phile from DC.  I'm so looking forward to getting away, going somewhere warm and sunny that I already love and sharing pandas with someone who is as interested as I am.

I've been to San Diego before, back in 2001.  I went to see U2 play in both San Diego and Anaheim as well as to visit Hua Mei, the panda cub I'd been virtually raising via panda cam way back when.  I stayed with a local on Coronado Island (heaven on earth!) and we ventured off the island only for the show and to eat in Old Town.  That one meal was hands down the best Mexican food I've ever had.

But the bigger resolution is the inner calm I have now as I've got another trip to look forward to.  Once the holidays passed, I had inner turmoil like a nagging itch I couldn't scratch.  I had nothing in the pipeline, nothing to look forward to.  This did it.  For now.

In looking ahead to a return to China in 2013, I got the United Airlines credit card, which gets me 25,000 miles on the spot and another 10,000 over coming months.  That, combined with miles from my last China trip and this trip to California, should, in theory, get me an upgrade at least one way to China.  But the card itself comes with some pretty handy perks, like free checked baggage, priority boarding and United lounge passes.  Yee ha!

So, seven weeks until California, tasty Mexican food, warm weather (and more pandas!)!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Thinking about....

San Diego!  As I loathe winter, what better March trip to look forward to than glorious San Diego?  And their three pandas...  Hold tight till I book it.