Monday, December 31, 2018
Year in Review 2018
This year was a huge year for me. In March, I ended my 30 year career at the United States Attorney's Office for the Central District of California. I made it...I'm retired! And nothing has diminished the joy of that word - retired - since that happy day.
Of course, not having to go to work every day, face the Los Angeles commute, get up early, etc., means there are big changes in life. Not having to work in L.A. anymore means we really don't have to live here anymore, either, so we're gearing up for our own Escape From L.A.
That means travel will be light for awhile while we accomplish this relocation. Our only travel for the next few months will be house hunting and moving trips up to the northern half of our state.
Still, we did do some traveling this year so lets recap some of the highs and lows...
Best Pizza - Tim and I are pizza fanatics and love a good pie. We've had some great deep dish pizzas at Chicago Fire in the Sacramento area and Rance's in Long Beach, California. Our local favorites Joey's Red Devil and Casa Bianca continue to produce top-notch pizzas but the best we had this year was the star pizza at Mister01 Pizza in the Brickell neighborhood of Miami.
A splendid, thin crust pie with pointed handles of crust filled with ricotta making it a tasty and easy way to pick up the pizza.
As for hotels, there were none that were truly spectacular this year but the Homewood Suites we stayed at in St. Petersburg, Florida was a solid hotel. In fact, the Homewood Suites brand (part of Hilton) has been pretty reliable for us in general. The Doubletree Suites we stayed at in Rancho Cordova...just east of Sacramento...is another solid hotel where we scored a two story loft on one stay and a 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom, sprawling suite on another.
Air travel was light this year, with only two airlines flown. Those were Southwest and American Airlines. While Southwest continues to provide superior service, American is still slowly descending from its once lofty place on our list. I can still see glimpses of the old airline in there somewhere but it's a shame. It used to be our favorite way to fly.
Tim took his first cruise this year, a four day Royal Caribbean cruise to the Bahamas from Miami. And...it was really kind of miserable. Another shame, we were really looking forward to that.
This was also the year that we completed our greatest travel quest...to see every stadium in Major League Baseball. We wrapped it up with visits to the Atlanta Braves, Tampa Bay Rays, and the Miami Marlins. Funny that we had no great expectations of the Rays stadium in St. Petersburg but that was an outstanding place to watch a game. Atlanta and Miami? Among the worst baseball experiences we've ever had.
Fall took us to three California destinations. Catalina Island, Santa Barbara, and another trip to the state's Motherlode region.
It's well known that we like the Gold Country enough to move there.
Santa Barbara had some highs...like the Boz Scaggs concert and dinner at Presto Pasta...and lows like a blocked wheelchair ramp at a restaurant we were looking forward to going to.
Catalina...where I proposed to my wife over 35 years ago and have not been to since...is relatively unchanged. It's a lot more expensive than it used to be but is still a quaint little slice of old-time California beach town.
And that's pretty much been our kind of light travel year. We'll pick this up again next year after we've moved. Thank you for your support of The World on Wheels.
Happy New Year!
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