Sunday, November 20, 2011

Malibu, Traveling, and Visiting Friends

After spending most of the day at Venice Beach and Santa Monica, we headed for Malibu for the night. Until now, we’d stayed in state run RV parks but we’d read about a privately owned park in Malibu that sounded really nice, with a laundry room and WIFI and a cheaper fee than the state run parks. Some of the previous parks advertised WIFI but it was either hard to find or there was an extra fee so we’d been stopping in Starbucks when we wanted to check emails, etc. We pulled into the Malibu Beach RV Park and it was lovely. The people were super friendly; the sites were nice; there was a beautiful view. We ended up not being able to get WIFI from our site (which they told us might be a problem) but they had a TV room/library/general purpose room near the office and we were able to access internet with no trouble there. The first night we caught up on laundry and emails and Facebook and paid some bills, etc. We liked it so much that we decided to stay a second night.

Rich taking care of the important task of "waste dumping." I told him I would do it at least once to show that I could. :)

The view from our campsite in Malibu

The next day, we drove way out of our way searching for a Ralph’s grocery store in Malibu—very frustrating because there is virtually nowhere to turn around in an RV on the Pacific Coast Highway and we had to go almost all the way back to Santa Monica before we could pull over and turn. The streets are so narrow! I would not want to live there! Residents have to pull their cars into driveways up on hills and then back out into all the traffic on the highway when they leave. I would be a nervous wreck! Oh yeah, get this—we saw houses for rent for $21,000 a month. YES, that is 21 THOUSAND, not 21 HUNDRED. Who are these people??!! We finally found Ralph’s hidden away in a shopping center that we’d already passed going the other direction. I was wearing capri pants and sandals—it IS warm here, even though it is November, right? I was so surprised to see all of these Malibu people wearing coats and boots. Seriously! Not light jackets, winter coats! And boots! They would never make it in Unalaska, would they? So we finished our shopping and I made a stop at the Post Office and we drove back to our RV park. We had planned to take a hike but it gets dark so early that we didn’t have time any more! Rich cooked us some fabulous “Malibu Beach RV burgers” (shown above) and we did some more laundry. We are wild and crazy, are we not?

The famous Sunset Blvd.

We tried to meet up with Rich’s nephew Jeffrey while we were there but he had some things going on and we never worked it out. Would have loved to have seen him but maybe another time! While using the internet in the group room, we chatted with a retired "entertainment lawyer" who had lots of advice for us about retirement, etc. I think he probably wanted us to ask him "OH WOW, who did you represent?!" but we did not bite. At one point, he mentioned meeting Roger Ailes of Fox News Corp. and said he was a "brilliant" man. Later, we were asked about Sarah Palin and the guy was hugely relieved to find out we are not fans. He hesitantly asked our politics and when I came right out and said "left wing," he was so excited. He's decidedly liberal and was so happy to find "liberals from Alaska." He said we'd changed his whole outlook about Alaska. haha

Rich has some friends, Dain and Crystal, in Chino Hills, so we planned to see them on Tuesday. We got up fairly early and set off for Prado Regional Park near Chino Hills. Malibu kinda started changing my mind about the RV thing and I guess I was getting a little more relaxed about the driving and parking and other complications. We had to drive through part of LA and I thought I would be worried sick but Rich was doing a great job and I was not nearly as paranoid as I thought I would be. Those huge highways with 14 lanes across and lots of big trucks whizzing by do add up to a bit of worry but I guess all you can do is be careful and alert, right?!

Prado Regional Park was another really pretty place. We got settled and then Dain came to pick us up. He and Rich knew each other and worked together many years ago—he was also good friends with Rich’s brother George. Rich and Dain had seen each other a couple of years ago when they both stayed with George for some time before he passed away, but Rich had not seen Crystal in many, many years. She was at work so the other three of us hung out at their house for a couple of hours while the guys reminisced. When Crystal got home, we all went out for a great Mexican dinner, more chatting and reminiscing, and then Dain took us back to the RV for the night. It was great to meet them and hopefully it will not be too many years before we see them again
Crystal and I have lots in common. We are both short and wear the same size shoes. haha We friended each other on Facebook after our visit and found out that our birthdays are one day apart (different years). And our kids are about the same ages.

The next day, we set out for Joshua Tree National Park. Rich is doing a great job driving. He has really alleviated some of my anxiety by being super careful. :)

Guess what! RVing IS fun after all!

1 comment:

Suzassippi said...

Well, at least you hung in there! It looks like great fun--way more fun than being here right now, but have I mentioned right after I get back from Graham, I get to spend a week in Mound Bayou? LOL It will be sort of like summer camp--we'll be in dorm rooms with shared bath and shower facilities, sleeping on a cot and a blow up mattress. I better stock up on some ibuprofen. Debra and I are camp cooks; are you sure we can't talk Rich into coming down for the honor?