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!)!