I hope that this summer is treating you well! I honestly thought that this summer was going to be a big ole bummer for me. I was working so much that I didn’t really get to enjoy things I normally would. I been stressed out a lot which resulted in me getting sick (several times). So when the opportunity for me to fly up to California for a week to visit my best friend (nearly 20 years of friendship we’re talking) – I was extremely excited. I actually wanted to have a longer trip so that I could drive/fly down to Las Vegas area to visit family but it didn’t work out the way I planned. Either way – an escape from what had become stagnant and dull really got me feeling happy. I hadn’t seen my best friend in years so I wanted to make sure I soaked in every precious moment I could with her. Also, not only was I visiting her; I was also getting to meet her future husband! DOUBLE EXCITED. So read on for a little behind the scenes look at my little California adventure.
Soooo… the first stop we made was to get some In-N-Out burgers. That meal really hit the spot after the plane travel and miniature “meal” that they served us on the plane. Speaking of that… the “meal” consisted of a little rice, ONE baby carrot, ONE broccoli and a serving of chicken. It was the complimentary meal so I wasn’t so annoyed but it would have been nice to have the option to purchase something else but alas… my belly was semi full after the meal and they gave us a delicious cookie and unlimited beverages.
Since I flew in at night (time differences suck) we didn’t do much else that evening but enjoy some burgers, get hugs, laughs and some tears in since it had been so long since we had seen eachoter.
Forestiere Underground Gardens
The first place aside from getting food was visiting Forestiere Underground Gardens When I first heard about the gardens (online) it sounded like a cool place to check out because of the history and how it came to be but actually going there and experiencing the tour I was blown away! If you have never been there, it consists of undergrown tunnels and rooms that were hand-built (using mainly hand tools) by Mr. Baldassare Forestiere in the 1900’s.
The tour takes you through what was his home (underground) and you get to see the grapevines (so cool) and citrus trees he grew (many of which still stand today). He was a brilliant man and thought of many things – from how to keep the caves warm during winter to secret peep holes so he could see if someone had snuck down into his cave. It was just a lovely experience and I would totally take others to see it just to learn about the history of it.
Girls Just Wanna Have Fun
Of course we had to hit up the mall and outlets in the area to pick up a few things and that was a lot of fun. And I don’t care what anyone thinks – I went to the dollar store and got $24 worth of goodies that would have cost me nearly double if I had purchased them here in Hawaii. We once had a 99cents store and prices slowly reached $1 and eventualy $1.75 to $5.00. Sneaky bastards. Anyways – don’t hate on dollar store splurges lmao
One thing I totally didn’t realize was that there were Casino’s in California owned by Native American tribes. Two that we checked out was Chukchansi Gold Resort & Casino and Table Mountain Casino. We actually went to both of them more than one time and on the weekend we ended up at the Chukchansi’s Firehouse Lounge. We spent a couple hours at the Lounge drinking, laughing and chatting with the bartenders. I hadn’t had that much fun in so long!
Other than In-N-Out there were a couple other places I wanted to stop for food and treats. Here is where I stopped:
Table Mountain Casino: They have great food (at great prices). I really enjoyed their chicken wings from their cafe (I hade them twice). They also have other places in the casino to eat. One place we tried was Eagles Landing Restaurant and lemme tell you. I had their Cobb Salad. THE BEST salad I have had in ages. It was HUGE, everything tasted fresh and deeeelicious.
Chick-Fil-A: I used to live in Georgia so of course if I see a Chick-Fil-A somewhere I just have to get me a chicken sammich, waffle fries and lemonade (they had watermelon so I was like YES PLEASE)
Krispy Kreme: Need I say more?
Dutch Bros Coffee: My best friend insisted that I had to try this coffee spot because of my love for coffee in general but also because I like specialty and blended coffee drinks as well. LEMME TELL YOU… I had a Caramelizer Freeze (blended caramel mocha) and it was so delicious – rich, flavorful, just enough sweetness, creamy and didn’t turn into melty ice mess. Good stuff! I want to try like 10 other things on their menu!
Lots of yummy food was had but I’m a little bummed I didn’t get to eat a giant turkey leg.
Of course I didn’t get to go to every place in California that I wanted to go to and had to remind myself that California is pretty huge (compared to the island I live on) so I really look forward to going back again. Of course my Best Friend was trying her hardest to convince me to move there. Funny thing is I have thought about moving to California off and on for years. Not sure if I will actually take the leap and do it but I have been very tempted.
Have you been to California? What are your favorite places to visit, things to do and food to eat there? Let us know in the comments.
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