Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Michigan Part One

Comerica ParkMy friends and I decided that we were going out for a guy’s only outing. But the girls wanted to be included...let's just say that we cave in... Cause being in the "dog" house and being put in an arctic hold (if you know what I mean) is altogether a bad idea. You would have reacted the same way, by inviting the girls as well.

As our personal way to get revenge, we were going to make it an all the things guys love, college football and baseball! We decided this time around to go to Detroit Michigan. Land of the Tigers and Wolverines, and that is exactly what we had planned.

One of my friends told me about this awesome website where we can get discounts on renting a car, which we will need. It is called rentalcarmomma, sounded stranger at first when I heard it, but trust me I found a great discount! Since it was a bunch, we rented a minivan. I was a little apprehensive cause i thought it was going to be a lot, but hey it didn’t come out that much. The discount, you may ask... $227.45, for the six of us, that is about $38 each...for three days, it is a bargain!

We bought tickets to go to Comerica Park, which is home to the Detroit Tigers. we are gonna see them play the Chicago White Sox. Another good thing about the ballpark is that it has a museum portion that shows statues of the baseball greats who played with the tigers, like Ty Cobb and Sparky Anderson and many more. Plus includes memorabilia from those early years and modern day baseball, which is awesome!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

More Summer Fun in Cali

The following day, Alejandra and I did a nice hearty breakfast and then we make a basket with some crackers and caviar and wine and cheese. We headed north thru highway 1 and kept driving until we saw our first stop, the Bixby Bridge. It is a beautiful looking bridge, but what is most impressive is that it has a view directly to the Pacific Ocean. And boy, if you can see all sort of marine life!! There were seals and walruses, so it was very incredible to see that area very much alive. One thing that definitely make it a highlight is to see an old guy riding with his 1940 Dodge coupe. Since we were in the “tourist” area, he stopped by and said how a nice couple we made, and then he was very friendly giving us a nice story about the car and the bridge. Happens that his wife died five years ago and every time he made the pilgrimage to the bridge cause that’s where her ashes where spread. Alejandra was totally enchanted and then started crying. Me? Well, I guess a little something caught my contacts, and that’s the story I am sticking to it!

Point Sur LighthouseThen we continue driving and found the Point Sur Lighthouse, which is the spooky part of the trip. They have a tour that gets you around the lighthouse, and since its one of the oldest in the area, it has amazing stories to boot. Plus, Alejandra is a major Horror geek, so it was awesome the little spooky stories. We weren’t disappointed. You maybe asking about why the basket, well, it was for the final portion of the trip, we travel a little off from the coast, and found the Henry Miller Library. Alejandra’s eyes were sparkling, because as you all know, she is a sucker for poetry and all things literary. We saw things that Henry Miller used for his poems and his novels. And, outside, there’s live entertainment. Either music groups or also they have open mics, which allowed people to write poems or little stories in whichever form. I was totally in awed when in the mist of eating the caviar and drinking our wine, Alejandra stand up and with a piece of napkin she totally floored the people around with a beautiful poem, if I say standing ovation is to say the least, at the end people stopped and talked to her and told her how talented she was!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Summer in Cali

Ms. hotness Alejandra and I been planning this trip like forever, finally the day has arrive! We are going for the first time to California. Exciting doesn’t come close!

After the jitters of luggage, “where is the camera?”, “did you have the tickets?”, “omg, I am forgetting the hair dryer!”, “pulled for a last minute shop”, we hopped in the plane and here we were arriving at San Francisco.

Then, we went to the counter and have our car, which was booked using Rental Car Momma. They have a super nice Alamo coupon that added a little extra discount on top of what they already showed, so it came at a affordable price. Since Alejandra is majorly into “going green” (she changed the light bulbs around the house and put those energy-saving ones, you know, the kind that looked like pretzel), I totally went to the Focus which is a hybrid. The price was not bad, especially for the summer $382.00

We drove south to a nice little cabins in the middle of the woods by Big Sur, California…which is a nice outdoorsy area. Once we reach there, we settle our luggage and things, and drop dead in the bed. We knew the flight was going to take a toll on us.

Big Sur

Next morning, we headed to the coast and then we book a charter boat that get us to experience whale watching. We depart very early, still was looking dark. Both the captain and his co-pilot (who happens to be his wife) were super-duper nice. We were altogether like 40 people on board, and there were some with ultra-professional cameras. We were ready with our Nikon Coolpix camera that we bought specifically for this trip. The waiting is what is killing, but once the captain thru the speakers said that they have a nice spot, we were all ready turning our cameras on. Alejandra, since you all know she is a pro in photography, she was all decked out, and I was with my ultra-light easy to use camera. Then, the moment came and we were all wowed with the spectacle, two killer whales, came on view doing like a somersault, like those that Shamu at sea world make, but seeing in the wild is more fantastic. Then we kept driving to the open sea and that’s where we saw a blue whale, in the far left of the boat. The captain was like soo thrill that he even came out and took a couple of pics too. His wife was then taking the helm and giving tips and incredibly awesome info on the whales. It was a totally immersive experience, one to remember!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

The Florida Everglades

The Florida EvergladesSo my family and I decided we wanted to revisit the Everglades. We haven’t been down there since we first moved here and were all guns ho for visiting all of Florida’s major attractions. However at the time when we did it we took a tour that started in Orlando, so you can imagine we had a very short time to meander around. In fact we spent about two hours walking around the edges and out on the boardwalks… we never actually got to go out on a real “tour.”

So we decided that we would get to the Everglades as quickly as possible before the kids had to go back to school. We found a sweet deal on Rav 4 from Hertz on RentalCarMomma and off we were on our way to the Glades. We stayed at a Marriot for the night and decided we would get a head start in the morning. We made plans to go on an airboat tour the first thing in the morning. We got the location of the place from a pamphlet down in the Marriot’s lobby.

Early the next morning we were in a massive boat with ten other people, all dawning the bright red headset so the roar of the engine didn’t fry our ear drums. I never realized how big the Everglades were until our guide stopped after about a half hour of driving to show us a few alligators. He made a comment about how we were only a few miles in despite the long drive, because there really is no straight path through the Glades. So naturally I asked him how large the Everglades were and he said that while the Glades were constantly growing and shrinking each year it was currently over a million acres. That means I could spend a lifetime in here and never see it all.

So if you are looking to explore the Florida Wildlife in Florida then you need to visit the Everglades. I would suggest taking an airboat tour because it really is the best option out there. You get to see all the great wildlife in a short period of time, plus the guides always know where they are going and the animal “hot spots.”

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Hartford, Connecticut - Part Two

The Pond House CafeBoth Alejandra and i have a love affair with reading, and one of our favorite authors is Mark Twain. He was the author of such memorable books like "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn", "The Adventure of Tom Sawyer", "A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court", and many more writings. So once I found thru a search that he had a house in Hartford and was also a museum on his name. I chalked it down into the paper as a place to go. Saw the pictures of the house and it has an outdoorsy kinda look, which is perfect cause Alejandra and i love nature.

Since we love the outdoor and nice buildings, there was a castle that is a bit of a drive south which is the Gillette Castle State Park. One of the nicest things about this place is that it has a ferry that goes around the river from one side to the next, and as per the website and the reviews, the vistas are super nice! Plus it has that "old" look, which adds to the uniqueness of the surroundings.

I found also a nice place that is going to be my "surprise" to Ms. Hotness Alejandra. It is called Pond House Cafe. Set in a landscape with beautiful gardens and variety of flowers and trees, with that as view, the cafe has a nice menu, so I am thrill and know that we both going to have a very romantic time.

At night, I found a couple of places. we love music, so i am going to take her to The Webster which is an underground concert hall, that has a very "intimate" feel but also keeping its "hard rock live" vibe. And to eat, I read reviews of incredibly nice restaurants, and all agree that SALUTE (which is Italian for Cheers) is one of the best. went to their website and check the menu and my mouth watered with those awesome appetizers and entree!

I have a pretty good idea how the itinerary will be, and can’t wait to have the treat of my life by showing Alejandra around Hartford. However, can’t wait to get over with the "Meeting the familia", I tell you, it is the only thing that is getting me the heavey-Jeeves! But all for the lady and all for love!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Hartford, Connecticut - Part One

Our Ford Crown VictoriaLately, Ms. Hotness Alejandra and I have been talking about getting to meet our respective families. So, it was without saying that ladies go first; therefore, meeting her family is such nerve-wrecking for me. I decided that the best time of the year will be autumn, around September.
I went into research mode and get quotes and places we can visit while being with her parents and family.

She is from the New England area. we put in a little hat places we would like to visit, specially near her place. After a few stirs and blindfolding her eyes, she picked the paper and it was Hartford CT. we both laughed, because it was sort of our first choice but we were not sure.

I am left with the setting up the itinerary and the places we're going to visit. Plus the renting of the car. I found this nifty website that offered a super offer and a coupon for additional discount, rentalcarmomma.com

We wanted a comfy car, so we both decided to go with the premium car, the Ford Crown Victoria. I know it feels like riding on a magic carpet, plus is really spacious which is awesome to put Alejandra's huge luggage and the bags with her makeup and other accessories. Tell you, this woman is the ultimate fashionista, but gosh! She always looks simply amazing! The price is simply awesome, $250.00 for that car during that week, plus unlimited mileage!!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Mid American Air Museum in Kansas

Mid American Air MuseumSo we ended up heading to Kansas this week to meet up with one of our kids friends that moved away. We met their family through our sons and we made good friends. In a recent phone call she earnestly tried to get us to come up and visit. It really wasn’t one of those “I offered because it was polite” circumstances. So we decided, why not? We looked on RentalCarMomma and found a $35 off weekday deal. If you rent a car for more than five days on weekdays then you get a big discount. So off we headed to Kansas in an Infiniti with the whole family.

Anyway I can tell you all the boring information about how we traveled which was pretty plane and simple or I could tell you about what we got to do up there. You see the day after we got there they started telling us about what they had in the area to do. The first thing that caught the kid’s attention was the Mid America Air Museum. Now we had been to museums just like this, even a really big one in Virginia but the kids were all excited and it was inexpensive so we decided to go.

In fact it was only $7 bucks for each of us, that’s a whole lot cheaper than an amusement. This place is absolutely full of planes. I mean the information for an air museum usually boasts about the number of planes but there must have been a hundred here. As soon as we got in the kids had off and disappeared running down row after row of them. Heck they even had planes from World War One here.

I guess my point is that if you are in the Kansas area this is definitely worth the seven bucks a person. We must have taken a thousand pictures and still not captured all the planes. The kids really liked it and I am sure they learned something… probably “Planes are cool!” But I had fun to, so I have no regrets. We left at the end of the weekend to the worst pun, when we crossed over into Oklahoma my son said “We aren’t in Kansas anymore.”

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Fishing in New Orleans Part Two

My meal!So when they suggested that we were going deep sea fishing on a large fishing boat they lied. We ended up on something that could only be described as a yacht. I mean this thing was enormous! We woke up early and got to the docks just in time to meet our captain before sailing away. We also found out that we wouldn’t be the only ones on the boat. Since it was so large there were two other groups. The captain said they can have up to fifteen people on board at a time, including the crew. Since there were three in the crew I guess they can fit twelve people. Either way, the other guys on board pretty much kept to themselves.

Anyway we sailed out of the “harbor” and went straight into the depths of the Gulf of Mexico. It took us almost two hours to get out to deep enough water for them to consider it “deep sea” fishing. But I am not complaining, because this massive yacht had a bar underneath, and of course they were already cooking up some mean burgers and hot dogs. Don’t ask me why we ate lunch at ten o clock. But when you wake up at 5:30 to get to the docks on time I was read to eat.

Now I am sure you are all wondering about how the fishing is in the Gulf. Well its nothing like the Atlantic. The captain said the waters were choppy because of all the hurricanes in the Atlantic, but even with choppy waters the waves never rose over a foot out of the water. So it felt like fishing on a giant lake the entire time. But that didn’t deter us, we caught all kinds of fish, mostly dolphin and snook with the occasional king fish. Some were big some were small but the biggest had to have been one of the king fishes that was probably four and a half feet long.

The best part about the trip was that they fired up the grill on the way back to shore and we had two of our dolphin and two of our snook right there on the spot. Ever wondered what a fish tasted like just an hour after being pulled from the water? Delicious.