Friday, May 15, 2009

Graduation trip day 4 and 5 (San Diego, LA, Santa Barbara, Solvang and Costal Route)

San Diego is the kind of place anybody who like military hardware must go. Everything is just there. No joke.Behind me one of the soviet submarines that was also used in one of the Movie which i think is Master and Commander or something like dat. Behind USS Hornet, by the way now i think about it again this is a better deal that USS Midway which i visited. There are a lot more aircrafts on their deck. Besides decommission aircraft carriers the 3rd fleet is also based there and there is a section called the aircraft carrier row as well as numerous fleet bases. When i was there, i saw at least two active carriers and not including more than dozen other warships. There was dozen of patrol crafts that are armed as well so don't fool around.
We drove near to a military base to have a nice shot of San Diego downtown. Scott almost drive into the base though and gave me a good scare. I was like NO NO NO you can't... He was like no worries just say we are tourist. Come on, USA was bombed in Pearl Harbour because the Japanese was acting as tourist... I don't want to take the chance and they are certainly not your SAF troops. They are regulars. I don't want to be like in Harold and Kumar. Hahaha.
Lunch for the first few days was mainly chips and junk food that we bought from the 99 cent stores which help us to save a lot of money.
Point Loma, nice scenary of the San Diego bay area. You need to pay 5 bucks to get in but well worth it.
For some reason, you can see the base from the vantage point of point loma and you can see dozens of black hawks, F18s and other military aircrafts from there.
The funny thing was the announcement system even tells you there is a nuclear attack submarine coming into port... Talk about being discret.

The ideal house.
We manage to squeeze sometime on the way back to LA to pay Felcia a visit at her California Polytechnic. Her school dorm reminds me of NTUC downtown east chalet, no joke i think the setting and the design looks the same.
Her school term is damn wierd compared to all the other exchange students, she only came to the US in like mid of March and her term ends in middle of june which is pretty short.

Next stop, we drop by Santa Barbara. This place is so spanish. Actually the nice places are all out of town and you need to reach it by car. So if you are visiting California, get a car and drive out of the city.
The second pitstop for our coastal drive up to San Francisco, Solvang the Danish town. I like all the small towns they are all unique in their own way and if you are in Solvang buy their Danish pastry, they are pretty good. The thing about the town is all the local staff are dress in traditional danish customs to create that danish atmosphere.
We had a good lunch at Solvang and it wasn't that expensive as well. The best part, the strawberries were really fresh and tasty. The rest of the day, I drove 300 over miles a4long the coastal route to hit the outskirts of San Francisco. The original plan was to do this over two days but we wanted to pick up the HKU group from the airport the next day. Its not an easy drive the costal route, it was like the circuits in Daytona, turning and turning for hours. Guess what, i was the driver and i only got my license 9 months ago haha. Anyway we didn't really see what was Big spur about since we saw tons and tons of coastal scenary all along the entire day so we were like numb to some extend. Oh one more thing don't expect to have reception for your phone at some places along the coastal route and if anything happens you better start praying because there is nothing near the route. Anyway almost forgetting, the picture above is the fame lone cyrpus at the 17 mile drive.
There are indeed many nice scenary spots along but i guess we were pretty tired after a long day of driving.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Graduation trip to the West Coast Day 1 to 3 (Santa Monica and San Diego)

Now that the trip is over, I am back and have told my mum about driving and stuff haha i can finally input more information here. Anyway, the first day of our trip we went to Los Angeles, Santa Monica and stayed at rhe super 8 there, the cab fare was something like 55 dollars. It was a big suite. Everything was there, we have our own kitchen facilities too. The only thing lacking was a good and stable internet connection which was only available near the lobby.
There was a 99cent store there and this store is great, i think even cheaper than Walmart. Most of the things were going for 99cents and we bought a lot of stuff from there including our breakfast. The microwave breakfast had brownie, corn and a piece of pizza, all that for 99cents. We bought like 3 litre sodas for 99 cents everything was amazingly cheap. The next day after we got our car, a Mazada 6, we drove to Santa Monica beach
Took some cheap thrills of taking photos and not buying anything haha.
If anybody is hitting La, you probably should visit Santa Monica and i think one thing special about the place is the street artist. I bought some hand painted pictures from them and its really amazing just looking at how they create that piece of art.
In the evening, we started our drive down to San Diego which we stop by different places along orange county and finally slept in the car at some Mac Donald parking lot. haha. We brought blankets and pillow along so that we can have a more comfortable night in the cars to save some money. Early next morning we went to Sea World and bought discounted tickets using online coupons. Hehe another great way to save money.
Ths star of seaworld, Shamu the killer whale. The theme park is worth the money really and i think Singaporeans should go for this instead of the San Diego Zoo which is also famous but well the Singapore Zoo is not bad either so for something different visit the Seaworld.
Starfish General
The shows in the park were good. I must say they even have entertainment before the actual show starts and they are really good.

We played some games in Seaworld and won these two killer whale soft toys. By the way we played in such a way its a confirm win. haha.
We visited San Diego old town just before checking into the Hotel that night which was another Super 8 hotel.

The old town had a lot of Mexican Heritage and influence. Afterall, it is an hour away from the Mexican border.
So this was the nearest we got to the epic centre of the swine flu.
We had our own rooms that night because Ali didn't manage to join us for the trip and we could not cancel the room.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Last parties in Boston

Starting with this send off for Julia which is held in our Forest Dorm.
There were so many people who got drunk that night but well its the last night for Julia.
One last group photo with Julia
Minna msn me to do a gathering at seasons before we leave and well ...
Look at the number of people who turn out, i think all the Bentley kids were thinking whats with the size of this group. It was even larger than the other time we had this huge table at Seasons with most of the Europeans.
The next day, Adibah and gang were leaving for Charles place at Cape Cod but look at the amount of luggage four people had... The thing was initially there was a tinge of saddness that people were leaving but i guest after the uncle that was supposed to pick them up came about 2 hours late because of the jam, it sort of dose that feeling and i guess they were more eager to leave than feeling the saddness of leaving.

Last day at Bentley was really a mad rush plus consider that I haven't had proper sleep for the last two days because we were having all these send offs, it was really mad. I was supposed to go with Rose and Orsi to take photos around the Campus but the weather was pretty bad that day and we only had a one hour time frame before i left for Boston downtown but we were still lucky that the weather improvcd slightly for us to take the photos.
My friend JP from Japanese class joined us that evening for dinner at Cheesecake factory.
Entire Semester, its the only time we hang out together and he treated me, Yanmin and a few of those seating at that area dinner. Thanks JP, hope to see ya in Singapore and i will definately treat you to nice food and drinks.

Dinner with Andrew Innocent, Andrew Saxes, Miriam, Ali and of course the rest of the exchange group.