Keeping the blogosphere posted on the goings on of the world of submarines since late 2004... and mocking and belittling general foolishness wherever it may be found. Idaho's first and foremost submarine blog. (If you don't like something on this blog, please E-mail me; don't call me at home.)

Monday, February 19, 2007

Bubblehead In The Mist

We went to the San Diego Wild Animal Park on Saturday, due mostly to my new philosophy of "Schedules are for people who aren't on vacation". I used to treat vacations like most other aspects of my life -- I'd come up with detailed schedules, work out contingency plans, and get frustrated when others didn't understand the importance of sticking with the schedule. Basically, I was a submariner. (I also packed way more clothes than I needed to -- I'd count the number of days, and multiply by two to get the number of separate outfits I'd need; after all, I might get wet on all of those days, and would need a change of clothes.)

Since then, I've bought into the theory that vacationing means a vacation from sticking to a schedule -- just do what you feel like doing at the moment. On Saturday, our plan was to get down to the Main Base and get tickets for the amusement parks we're hitting this week, and then go to the San Diego Zoo (because, as everyone knows, there's nothing in the world cuter than a baby panda). We ended up hanging out at the Exchange a little longer than expected, so we didn't get to the Zoo until a little after noon. It was a really nice Saturday at the beginning of a 3-day weekend, though, so it turns out that everyone else in San Diego had decided to go to the Zoo as well. After driving around in the parking lot for 40 minutes without finding a spot, we decided it wasn't going to happen, so that's why we headed 35 miles north to the Wild Animal Park.

It'd been 2 1/2 years since we'd been in San Diego, but based on the one data point of seeing freeway traffic on a holiday Saturday, and seeing more new houses on top of hills next to the freeways, I'd say the SD area continues to get more crowded. That doesn't mean that it's not still just about perfect.


Blogger Old Gary said...

So which one is Bubblehead?

(just kidding)


2/19/2007 10:54 AM

Anonymous Birdie said...

I did my sumbarining out of Holy Loch so never experienced being in the Navy in SD, but I did live there, and also in Temecula for fifteen years. SD may be nearly perfect if you're vacationing or living there while in the Navy. Try it from a civilian perspective and you may think differently.

Unless both are earning more than $100K/year, it is very difficult to purchase a home within 20 miles of Mission Valley. That's why so many have purchased to the north and are willing to commute 75 miles each way, through Southern California traffic.

The daily commute results in 3 to 4 hours in a running car, paying a $.50/gallon premium over already irrationally high gas prices to the state of California in the form of a gas tax.

If you can afford to purchase a house, expect to pay $800 to $1,200 PER MONTH in California property taxes alone.

If you play golf, expect to pay $125 to $250 per round. Anything cheeper will be on a poorly maintained muni course.

If you like always being in long lines, usually with foul smelling angry people, you'll fit right in with the California experience.

Even the wonderful climate of Southern California has its downside. Most folks living in SoCal have roots in parts of the country that have four seasons. After several years of SoCal's "two seasons with no weather", one longs for the rumble of thunder, the lights of an electrical storm, and the fresh clean air after a passing shower. At least I did.

The stresses of high cost living, long commutes, gang violence, too many people, and potential terrorist activity pushed my wife and me back to the midwest. Life here is so much more relaxed.

There are a lot of things to see and do in San Diego, and the area has some beautiful places to visit. I too would go back to San Diego for a short vacation. But to think SD is nearly perfect is to think from a perspective I was never familiar with.

PS: For all you people who live in southern California, please stay right there. You wouldn't want to live in a quiet, peaceful, less expensive, friendly place so far away from the excitement you're used to.

2/19/2007 11:08 AM

Anonymous Lee Hickerson ICC(SS) USN RET said...

BH, Are you sure that isn't an SSN wardroom picture? And you aren't the only one to drive several hundred miles to spend to much time in the Navy Exchange on vacation. Enjoy yourselves.

2/19/2007 4:16 PM

Anonymous reddog said...

Birdie is embittered and feeling unlovd.

So Cal is the perfect place to live.

2/19/2007 4:32 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sure, come to San Diego and don’t stop in to say hi. I can take a hint.

As for Birdie, I grew up in Northern Iowa and joined the Navy to get out. I spent my whole 20 years trying to get back to San Diego.

My father-in-law, who lives in Seattle, says San Diego has 47 shades of brown and we do have four seasons, “Drought, Earthquake, Fire and Mud Slide”

We bought our house here, not far from Qualcomm Stadium, in 1991. We ate a lot of beans and franks that first six months but it was no different than when I bought my first house, in Washington, as a single First Class. It smoothes out after a few years.

After I retired, we really thought about going back to the mid-west, paying cash for a house, putting the rest in Mutual Funds and we would never have to work again. However, you can’t beat the sunshine and I haven’t had to shovel it since I’ve been here.
San Diego has so many small communities and usually, if you get shot at, you’re in a place you shouldn’t have been in anyway.

So come to San Diego, drop your money and go home. Better yet, come here and buy a house so my equity will go up.

That Damn Good Looking Aganger From Iowa

2/19/2007 9:36 PM

Anonymous birdie said...

I am anything but embittered. In fact I am, by far, the happiest guy I know.

The purpose of my earlier post was not so much to knock SoCal as it was to point out that it is not, in my opinion, the "Perfect" place to live.

To TDGLAFI I'd say, being shot at just for being in the wrong place is a daily occurrence in SoCal. That's insanity. What's even more insane is that you folks are so used to it that it hardly phases you. "Let the gangs kill each other. As long as someone we know doesn't get shot in the crossfire, so what."

Except for the negatives mentioned here and in my earlier post, I enjoyed living in San Diego and Temecula. We were there during a time in our life when our incomes allowed it. I always knew, however, that Southern California would be a very difficult place in which to retire. It is for that reason that I am now where I am, and loving it...

2/20/2007 10:28 AM

Blogger FbL said...

Sure, come to San Diego and don’t stop in to say hi. I can take a hint.

Ditto! ;) I suppose that's what I get for not reading regularly, huh?

Seriously, I hope you're enjoying yourself. If you need any tips/info, I'd be glad to help.

2/22/2007 4:20 AM


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