Friday, January 09, 2004

Trips of 2000

2000 - Orlando - In February, I was sent to Orlando for two weeks for
my job. It's not as nice as it sounds, since in the 16 days we were
there, we only got 3 days off. The rest of the time was spent working
11 or 12 hour days. But, we stayed in the brand new Crowne Plaza hotel
in one-bedroom apartment sized suites. I never had a desire to visit
Florida, but now that I've been there, I will go back. I spent all
three of my days off at Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure. I
bought a two day pass that was valid in both parks and spent the whole
first day in Islands of Adventure. That's an awesome park. The Jurassic
Park water ride and the Dueling Dragons coaster were the best rides
there. The next day I started in Universal Studios. I liked the Twister
ride the King Kong one. For some stupid reason, I went on the Jaws
ride. I have an extreme fear of sharks, but I figured it's a fake one
so it won't be a big deal. I sat next to a father and son who probably
think I am crazy. The shark comes at you three times and I had to cover
my eyes and ears each time. During one part, you are in a boat house
and the water is green. Suddenly, the shark starts hitting the building
and it sounds like it's going to collapse. That was one of the most
scary experiences of my life. Sad, huh? I spent the rest of the second
day in Islands again. I rode the Jurassic Park and Dragon rides for a
second time and went through the Dr Suess part, which was cool. The
third day we had off, one of my coworkers and I went to Citywalk, which
is a mall they put between the two parks. We shopped a bit and then
went in to Margaritaville. We drank and ate and drank some more. That
night the whole crowd went to a lobster buffet. I don't eat lobster or
prime rib, but I tried clam strips and decided I liked them. I need to
go back to Islands of Adventure and I would like to visit the Space
Coast and Busch Gardens, and maybe a Miami/Keys/Everglades trip, too.

- My spring trip in 2000 was to Ohio. I got a lot of strange looks, but
I wanted to see Columbus and Cincinnati. My mom came with me this time,
although we booked our flights seperately, but we met up in Columbus.
We went to the Zoo and to a good restaurant called Spagio's. We drove
down to Cincinnati and hit the Zoo there and also the Newport Aquarium
across the river in Kentucky. I had to run through the tube at the end
where you walk under the sharks! In both Zoos, we saw manatees, which
are so funny looking. I wondered how they can stay so fat while only
eating lettuce and plants! The Cincinnatti Museum Center is like three
museums and an omnitheater put together. I saw a movie about the Amazon
here. They had a big exhibit in the local section on World War II. Not
about the overseas stuff, but how things were here while it was going

Yosemite - Labor Day weekend I went to visit my friend Mike
who moved out to Berkeley. We went into San Fran one of the days and
ate at the Stinking Rose, a garlic restaurant. We drove over the GG
bridge and through the beautiful hills on the other side. Then over the
weekend, we drove out to Yosemite Valley in the Natl Park. On our way
there, we repelled down into a cave. That was so much fun! I want do it
down the side of a mountain. We saw El Capitan, Half Dome and Glacier
Point (speaking of repelling!). The scenery was breathtaking. Mirror
Lake was too shallow and cloudy to reflect anything, but Lower Yosemite
Falls was quite the sight. While entering the village, we saw a family
of deer on the side of the road. We stopped to take a picture and
anther one came bounding from behind us. We turned to see a coyote
chasing it, but when he saw us, he stopped and ran away. On the last
day, he had to work, so I went to the UC Berkeley campus in the morning
and hung out and had lunch before taking the BART back to the airport.

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