My goodness. Waking up at the god awful crack of dawn sucks, especially since I would normally be at work at the time we woke up.. :) We got to our pick up point right on time and were on our way to Tijuana in no time. And by no time, I mean we got there by 1:00, which was 6 hours after we left our hotel. The bus ride down was the longest freaking thing in the world. Plus we had to stop and pick people up along the way and drop people off at Seaworld and the zoo in San Diego.
But we got to the border and crossed in no time. Apparently, Mexico could care less about people coming in. But we had to take a shuttle across the border, which was PACKED full of people. I felt like I was sneaking into the country.. in a large red bus. :)
They dropped us off and immediately we were barraged with stuff for sale. Everything from necklaces to clay figures to masks to noisemakers and much much more. So much in fact that it was hard to find any keychains and shot glasses. I ended up getting what I needed, and bartered my way down from $20 to $11.75. Not too bad for a first timer! Muhaha. ;) Though CindyV did an excellent job. She bought a $35 pancho for $10. It was amazing! Reminded me of going garage saling with my grandmother.
We walked the strip, which was the safe part of town, a couple times. I got some churros and drank all the water I brought with me. It was very warm, but not hot. What is it with this place and not being HOT while I'm here?? It's great, I love it. Cindy said as soon as we leave it'll go back to being 105 every day.
We took a ton of pictures, everything from the street vendors to the McDonalds and KFC on the main street corner, to Cindy taking picutres of 50 drugstore vendors. She was looking for her medicine for her headaches, but the discount was actually more expensive than she can get them with insurance. But she may send CindyV down here in a couple months when she runs out of insurance! Tho Cindy will drive down and not take a damn bus again.
Every restaurant was in depseration to get us to eat there. They were shouting "2 for 1! 3 for 1! please, just check menu, please!" It was hilarious. After awhile I got numb from all the shouting and just kept shaking my head in refusal. the little kids kept trying to shove brancelets in our hands and the little old ladies were walking around trying to get some spare change. Old men were walking around silver bracelets and a vendor even asked me if I wanted to buy my "two wives some pretty for their wrists" Ha. Some wives. ;)
I got a bunch of sun on my arms and face. I'm turning into a local tthe way I'm browning up. CindyV has actually gotten so dark she's avoiding the sun now. CindyA's legs are so red that pressing on them makes them white for 3 seconds. So funny. When we finally sat down for lunch, my arms were bubbling with red dots. I'm like.. great.. some rash I got down here.. but it was just a sunburn coming to fruition. Sunscreen applied, lunch ordered and we enjoyed fantastic local cuisine. I got some chicken tacos and the Cindys got some mixed plates. Too much food to eat and the guac was really good.
But alas, we only had a solid 3 hours there before we had to leave. The way the schedules ran, our bus would leave around 5:10, and that meant we needed to leave Tijuana at 3 to get across the border in TWO HOURS. Ugh. Bus we had fun talking and taking pictures with our camera phones... except we don't have camera phones. CindyV thought she saw 'the troll' which won't mean much to everyone, but will to those that know her. She kept text messaging me about it, even though we were 4 feet away.
We got back to the parking lot 45 minutes early, checked out the local outlet mall and sat around waiting for our 3 hour bus ride home.. which turned out to be a 6.5 hour bus ride home. Ugh. Next time, I will RENT a damn car and drive us down, I swear. :) Our shuttle bus driver back in LA had no idea how to get us home and CindyV had to give her directions. It was like the movie Collateral where Jamie Foxx is telling Tom Cruise the best way to get across LA to get to Hollywood. She wouldn't even drop us off a mile down the road even though she was so late. Ahh, I just love to complain.
We got home to the hotel around 10, far too late to eat anything special, so we went and ate at Canters, a great 24/7 in Hollywood. I remember seeing it on MTV once, and we ate there last year right before we left for the airport. I couldn't finish my meal, and it was 1am here and I was exhausted. So much food. Cindy rescheduled her flight for Thursday, CindyV extended the car rental, I rented the room for another night... Wednesday is going to be full of beaching, swimming, eating Korean BBQ and maybe even Claim Jumper, a steak place that CindyA has been talking about ever since we saw it.