so today . . . was our bonus day in san diego--a whole day to do whatever we wanted to do.
"what do you want to do?" rollie asked me. "i don't know," i said, "what do you want to do?"
you see, this is how our conversations go. it doesn't matter if we are discussing where to have dinner or what movie to see. it isn't that we don't have preferences, it is just that we are both so nice that we will agree to whatever the other of us wants. but knowing that, neither of us wants to impose our preferences on the other one . . .
"well," rollie said, "we don't have to go do anything if you don't want to. i would be happy just hanging around here and reading." reading is probably our favorite thing to do, so normally that would be a great suggestion. but we can read at home! we are in san diego today, and i thought we should go do something, i just didn't know what. it was not a lovely sunny, warm day--it was cloudy and damp--not the best weather for going out and doing anything! but after a little more discussion, we decided to brave the weather and go visit the u.s.s. midway. i put on as many layers of clothing as i could get on under my sweatshirt, and off we went.
i was driving, rollie was navigating. except he couldn't get the gps in his phone to find us. he turned it off and then back on again. he had me pull over and wait for it to catch up. he rolled down the window and stuck his phone out into the open air . . . meanwhile, i pulled out my old magellan and found the directions :) and off we went. again.
i am fascinated by aircraft carriers. i am amazed by their sheer size, by the fact that they are like small cities, and that airplanes can actually take off and land on a ship! so i was pretty excited. they gave us headphones and digital players with explanations of all the different parts of the ship and it's airplanes. for free! (of course, we did have to pay to get in. and to park. so maybe 'free' is overstating it a bit.) it made a huge difference in enjoying what we were seeing, to be able to listen to all that history.
i took a few pictures, and then my camera batteries died. that was it for me. i was pretty sure i was done having fun if i couldn't take any more pictures. we started through the labyrinth of passageways, and then i saw it--a store! "look," i said to rollie, "i will be able to buy batteries. what luck!" but when i reached the front of the store, i saw that i was still going to be batteryless for a while longer . . .
there were mannequins all over this ship! and it isn't that they looked so lifelike up close, but seeing them out of the corner of my eye, they kept tricking me. it happened again when we entered the mess hall. i saw the food line and thought, "yay! i was just thinking i would like something to eat . . . "(of course, my brain quickly corrected itself, but those pesky mannequins creeped me out all afternoon!)
soon we found the cafe (because what tourist attraction would be complete without serving seriously overpriced food?) and ate delicious mushroom cheeseburgers for lunch. actually, we ordered mushroom cheeseburgers for lunch, but they refused to make any modifications! so when we got them, we performed surgery--i gave rollie my mushrooms, tomatoes, and extra sauce, and then i added ranch dressing to mine, cut it in half, eliminated half of the bun, and stacked the burgers together. the result was sort of messy, but delicious!
after lunch we walked through the gift shop--because they put the cafe on the opposite side of the gift shop, so we had to walk through it to get to the food! and i seriously looked at souveniers, because you know how anything touristy and overpriced draws me . . . thankfully they had penny-munching machines, so i pressed a few pennies to satisfy my need to buy something, and then we moved on to the flight deck and all the airplanes!
this is where i lost rollie. i was going from plane to plane, in an orderly fashion, and obediently listening to the information about each one from my headphones. rollie was darting about, in seemingly random order, and he was TOUCHING THE PLANES!!! (we were sooo channelling each other--usually rollie is the methodical one and i am the totally random one.) when i tracked him down, he said he was only interested in the fighting planes, so that is what he was looking at. i kept waiting for one of the docents to smack him across the knuckles for playing with the aircraft, but apparently it was ok, because they completely ignored him.
my favorite part of the day was meeting tom casenza. he is a world war II veteran, and he was there talking with people today. and when i say talking, i mean TALKING! but he didn't talk much about his military service. he talked about his construction business, and about where to get the best italian food in san diego, and about dancing--that is when his eyes really lit up--when he was talking about dancing . . .before we left, rollie wanted to ride in the fighter plane simulator. it was a two person ride, so he said to me, "do you want to drive or shoot?" i wasn't sure i wanted to do either, after watching these things in action. it was a little pod on a swivelling arm, and it would roll and move according to what the driver did. i was watching the one ahead of us twirl and toss and go upside down and all around, and i was pretty sure driving was not what i wanted to do. but i was also pretty sure rollie was going to want to shoot something down. we decided he should drive, and i should shoot. and it was a wild and crazy ride! we flew upside down, we flew sideways, we did a nosedive, we flew straight up--and this was with rollie driving. can you imagine what would have happened if it had been me driving?!?!?! fortunately we survived, but it was a good thing they had us empty our pockets before we got in . . .
the museum closed at 5:00. by the time we left, the sun was shining. we put the top down on the car and headed back to our dorm room. it was just as we had left it :)yeah, i'll bet you can guess who sleeps where . . .