Wednesday, July 25, 2012

These words are coming to you from Anaheim, California. Mr. Ashbury and I flew in to LAX on Sunday last, and will fly home again next Sunday.

One thing I can say is that I now fully understand the concept of jetlag. I don’t recall it being so difficult to adjust to Pacific Time when we went to San Francisco in 2008. I’m hoping the difference isn’t due to the fact that I’m four years older than I was then.

Seriously, I went to bed Sunday night at 5:30 pm Pacific time, and slept until 6 am the next morning. I figured that was simply a sign that I had exhausted myself more I’d realized, in the days before we left. But Monday wasn’t much better. I laid down for an hour or so at 7, feeling totally wiped.

Mr. Ashbury pointed out that the reason for my Monday exhaustion was that we had spent a great deal of the day outside. He could be right. Between the time we spent by the pool—him reading and me writing—and the three plus hours we were out and about—him walking and me on the scooter—most of our day was spent in the sun and breeze of this city not far from the ocean. That’s a lot of fresh air and sunshine for someone who sometimes doesn’t go out of doors all day.

Today the real business of the conference gets underway. From 5 to 8 pm there’s a book signing event at the Anaheim Convention Center. All of the proceeds of this sale benefit literacy programs in this area. RWA typically raises thousands of dollars every year to benefit literacy. Local chapters, across the United States and Canada also donate money every year to this worthy cause.

On Thursday, the conference itself gets underway. I’ve chosen a few seminars to attend this year. I do love to learn new things. But I haven’t made a full schedule for myself. I prefer to tread lightly, and of course, I do need my writing time.

Mr. Ashbury and I have explored this area together over the last few days. Although I have rented scooters at previous conventions, the venues didn’t have many attractions close by to encourage me to go out and explore. Here, we’re only a ten minute walk from a couple of very busy tourist areas: Anaheim’s Garden Walk, and Disneyland.

The Garden Walk is definitely aimed at the tourist, with restaurants like Bubba Gump’s, clothing boutiques, and a very large movie theatre. Arranged in a park-like setting, it’s typical of what I love to visit when I’m in “vacation mode”.

Ah, Disneyland. The original. The theme park that changed theme parks forever. No, Morgan didn’t, nor will she, actually go to Disneyland.

We did, however, visit the commercial area right outside the park called “Downtown Disney”. It’s packed with places to eat and lots of stores. They had a Lego Store, and a store where you could build your own bear. There were t-shirts and jewelry, purses and hats, and souvenirs of every style and shape and description.

At home, I’m not much of a shopper, that’s true. But I do love to look when we’re away, especially at all the shiny and sparkly bits of stuff offered at these sorts of places.

Also within easy walking/scootering distance of our hotel were places like I-HOP and a 7/11, a Chinese Food restaurant, a pizza place, and a Subway restaurant. There are plenty of what we used to call “motor inns”, all with pools. This area is definitely geared toward the family. The prices range from the mildly irritating to the truly stunningly painful.

Being frugal sorts we purchased only one bottle of water from the hotel. The rest we got and will continue to get at the 7/11. And we ate breakfast yesterday at the I-HOP.

Mr. Ashbury has to be on his own for a couple of days now as I attend to the business of writing and being a member of the Romance Writers of America. And he has decided, for good or ill, that tomorrow he is going to go, on his own, to Disneyland.

When he told me that I just shook my head and wished him luck. And yes, I did wonder, just for a moment, if maybe the poor man isn’t losing his mind.


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