San Clemente: Why isn’t choosing paradise over Jersey easy?

For two years, Mike, your typical Jersey guy through-and-through – loves a good slice of pie, isn’t afraid to tell a stranger that he’s wrong, curses way too much in traffic – was stationed in San Diego.

It was a long time ago – nearly 20 years – so he doesn’t mention it all that much. But I know he loved it, because when he does mention it, it’s as if it was heaven on earth. He loved the year-round perfect weather, the kind where here in Jersey, you say to a stranger, “What a beautiful day.” He loved the laid-back attitude that only seems to come with being near water. Oh, and the tacos. He really loved those.

But through our weeklong SoCal trip, he’s not especially nostalgic about any of the places we go or the activities we do. I think of when I went back to Florence, Italy two years ago, about a decade after a semester abroad, and how I nearly kissed my old apartment door. But Mike seems content to cruise by, not saying much, maybe mentioning a bar he had been to once on this block. 

Continue reading “San Clemente: Why isn’t choosing paradise over Jersey easy?”

Los Angeles: A tale of two cities

I may not have a piece of designer clothes to my name, but I’m a sucker for anything glitzy and glamorous. My Netflix history says it all: Million Dollar Listing, Selling Sunset, Keeping Up With The Kardashians. I love a 30-minute snippet where I can see the world from someone else’s eyes (whose loaded, obviously), where I don’t have to worry about finding another part-time job to pay my rent next month or think about our mismatched furniture. 

So, of course I was beyond thrilled to head to Los Angeles for one day during our weeklong tour of SoCal. Mike doesn’t share my thrill for chasing celebrities down Sunset Boulevard, so instead, I booked a food tour through downtown Los Angeles with Sidewalk Food Tours, figuring we could check out some cool foodie spots and I could scope out the scene I have so dreamed about. 

I am so dumb. 

Continue reading “Los Angeles: A tale of two cities”