Thursday, March 5, 2009

Journal Entry Three: Driving Mrs. Winchester

We arrived in Los Angeles last night at around 7:25pm after a day of driving down from San Francisco. We had left San Fran at around 10am, and took the inland route, opting to skip the scenic 10-hour costal journey for the shorter, baby friendly trek of 6 hours.

We made a detour in San Jose to go to a tourist trap that Nicole learned of on some “Haunted Places” television program on the Travel Channel. It’s called the Winchester Mystery House, and it was actually pretty cool. It’s a mansion, formerly owned by Sarah Winchester, the heir to the Winchester rifle fortune. She had lost her husband and child, both at young ages. So, she went to a psychic who told her that the spirits were angry with her and that she could only appease them by building a house forever, always building new additional. So that’s what she did. For over thirty years, she spent over 5 million dollars building this mansion. No doubt the psychic also happened to be related to the contractors that assisted in the construction. The weird part is that building the home wasn’t enough for her. She had to make the place twisted and nonsensical as hell to confuse the spirits. There are staircases that lead to the ceiling, and doors that open to two story drops. Oh yeah, bitches be crazy indeed!

The tour took a little over an hour, and since this whack job had tons of stairs we weren’t allowed to bring in Jackson’s stroller. Nicole and I traded off holding the little booger, until he fell asleep in my arms. Cute as can be, but heavy like a rock. We headed out, and the Garmin informed us that the remainder of our trip would still be about 6 hours. A hike, but better than the ten+ hours we would have wrestled with on the coast. Besides, the path we took, though not laden with oceanic views, was gorgeous just the same. Beautiful mountain ranges, bodies of water, and dancing rain in passing weather patterns gave us more than enough to look at during the drive. Best of all, Jackson slept almost the whole way.

The Beverly Hills Plaza Hotel is a steal. The combination of the off season, hotel renovations, shitty economy, and competition in the area equals $100 per night for what feels like a $400 per night suite. The room is probably 600-800 square feet. We have a full kitchen, full bathroom, distinct living room and bedroom, flat screen TV, and a desk with our own computer and fax machine. The hotel service is also very nice. We took it easy last night, and just watched some episodes of LOST and called it a day. Today we will venture out to see the sights of LA, and tomorrow we will be heading off to Disney Land.

Over the weekend we will hit the beaches, and any other attractions that we feel like seeing before we head off on Sunday to San Diego for the final leg of our California trip.

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