In August we will have lived in San Diego for eight years, making it the longest place Kristen and I will have lived in our adult lives. (Chicago, 1994 – 2002; Romeo, 2003 – 2008)

While we’ve fallen in love with and great enjoyed everywhere we’ve lived… there’s just something special about San Diego. While the tagline might be America’s Finest City we’ve become smitten with a place that grabs your heart in unexpected, sometimes non-touristy spots. Here’s a few snapshots of places that have given me goosebumps over these past eight years.

Sunrises over San Diego Bay

While tourists slumber, San Diegans take in the sheer, raw beauty of San Diego’s bay. Some of my most haunting moments of solitude have come on a glassy paddle across a silent bay to the bass-laden flats in Chula Vista, watching the sunrise over the mountains, light pouring over where darkness had taken hold. In this distance you hear revelry play on Naval bases while gradually the city wakes up to make noise.

Watching the tiny blue line burst forth into an indescribably sunrise, goosebumps.

Beach Bonfires

While tourists leave our beaches and head for their hotels, locals don fleece to flock to the fire pits partaking in the glorious ritual of a beach bonfire BBQ as the sun sets. Whether at Mission Beach, Ocean Beach, or our newfound favorites in Mission Bay… sitting around a fire while the day slips into night is always magical. Goosebumps.

Viejas Arena

I couldn’t be more proud to be associated, if only as a fan, all that’s happening at San Diego State University. The development phenomenon goes far beyond the success of football and basketball… but it is symbolized by what  happens at Viejas.

Selling out an NIT game in 12 minutes, goosebumps.

Christmas at the San Diego Zoo

Definitely a “locals only” kind of tradition. Each year, after the presents are opened and with supper digesting, San Diegans head to the San Diego Zoo to stroll.

Have you ever heard the lion roar? It’s sound fills the entire park. Goosebumps. 

Landing at San Diego airport

Confession? I dreaded flying home to O’Hare or Detroit’s Wayne airport. It was good to be home, but it was never quite like landing at Lindberg Field.

There’s nothing quite like sitting near someone on a plane who has never landed in San Diego before. You see aircraft carriers, the Coronado Bridge, and then… you fly between some skyscrapers before landing right next to the harbor.

Coming home after a long work trip, goosebumps.

Here’s to many more years of San Diego goosebumps. 






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