San Diego Living

Transportation matters

Since moving to San Diego in 2008 I’ve taken a lot of public transportation. In fact, part of choosing where we live was proximity to public transportation.

I can catch the bus about a quarter mile from our house and the trolley is about 1.2 miles away. With a bike that means I’m 5 to 15 minutes away from one of those options all the time. Speaking of my bike– I tend to ride my bike anywhere I can within about 3 miles.

Here’s what I know

I interact with people I would never, ever encounter if I drove my car everywhere. Normal folks like me headed to/from work. Tourists perpetually lost. Homeless folks. Mentally unstable folks. Rich folks, poor folks, cops, drug dealers, addicts. And every other combination of people you can imagine.

My interactions aren’t always conversations. Sometimes it’s small talk and often times it’s just observing.

When speed and convenience become the objectives of getting where I need to go I miss out on the richness of these interactions.

No, the trolley isn’t the fastest way for me to get to work. No, riding my bike after dark on a busy street isn’t the safest option. And yes, I recognize that I’m fortunate to live in a place where these are options.

But here’s the thing: Most don’t. In fact, given the choice almost every person I know would rather get in their car and zip to their place of work than wait on a bus or ding-ding on the trolley.

Each day as I’m walking somewhere or riding my bike or sitting on the trolley zillions of cars go by. Most have a single person in them. Most of those people are doing something else. (Listening to the radio, talking on their phone, etc.)

And those of us in the slow lane are the ones smiling.

So what’s the point?

You can make the choice to slow down. Walk places when you can. Leave the car in the driveway. Make time to take time.

We all know life isn’t about getting to our destination. So why not embrace the journey in your daily life? 

San Diego Living

Paul’s Fishing Trip

Kristen and I decided that we’d give each of the big kids an experience as part of their Christmas. So Megan is going whale watching with mom and I took Paul fishing out on the open ocean.

After a lot of research online I booked our day on the Daily Double out of Point Loma Sportfishing. (Yelp review) It was pretty reasonably priced and the reviews were good, especially for those with kids.

We weren’t disappointed! We both had a great time, made a lot of memories, caught some fish, and had plenty of stories to tell.

(click on the images to see them full-sized, sorry about the upside down ones!)


Notre Dame parenting San Diego Living San Diego State Sports

Passing on a love of sports

My dad took me to lots of games at Notre Dame. Later in middle and high school it became more about football than the other sports. But I have lots of fond memories of spending time with my dad at Notre Dame basketball, hockey, and football games. I even remember a couple baseball and soccer games along the way.

Even though no one in my family went to Notre Dame, we lived so close and experienced so much there, that I have a pretty strong connection to the campus. My friends and I rode bikes all over campus. (Don’t tell my mom!) We played hide-n-seek near the Grotto and skateboarded the trail around St. Joeseph’s Lake. We yelled and made echoes between the giant buildings and dared one another to go into the administration building. (aka Golden Dome) I spent hundreds of hours in the library (aka Touchdown Jesus) during my senior year of high school and still have 10-15 unpaid parking tickets for parking in the basketball coaches spot when he wasn’t there.

But most of my memories of Notre Dame are from Saturday’s in the Fall. My dad had a group of friends who put on epic tailgate parties. 75-100 people would hang out and party between 3 motor homes starting before dawn and going until dark. When I was really young we went to almost every game because you could always find a ticket for free or almost free. That changed in the late 1980s and early 1990s when Lou Holtz had them in National Championship form year after year. But I managed to find a way in to a lot of games in those days. My stepdad had a brother who was an usher who could sneak me in. I’d get to the stadium several hours before the kickoff and sit in his usher seat during the game. When it was too cold or I’d get bored I’d climb into the scoreboard and watch the game from that little window, listening to the TV cameramen shuffle their feet above my head as they operated the endzone camera. For a couple of years my stepmom was an MBA student and we had tickets at the front of the student section. During those years I got to go to the games it was too cold for my dad and stepmom to enjoy. Cemented in my memory for a lifetime is freezing my butt off and hunting for hot chocolate during the 1992 snow bowl.

San Diego State

There’s no comparing Notre Dame to San Diego State. Pretty much everything that could be different about the two schools is different. But what isn’t different is the proximity of where we live. I grew up about a mile from Notre Dame’s campus and my kids are growing up about a mile from San Diego State’s campus. So I want my kids to experience the campus. (Um, the positive sides of campus activities!) That’s why I’m commited to taking them to football and basketball games and other fun/educational things offered on campus for kids.

I’d love for my kids to build happy memories about a place with their dad. Just like my growing up around Notre Dame… every moment isn’t memorable and not everything is going to make a lasting impression.

What are you doing to build memories with your kids? What kinds of things did you do with your parents which built lasting memories?