June 2012


Decamped to Hillcrest, San Diego

Harvey Milk Street, San Diego

It’s Harvey Milk Street!

I’m currently in San Diego – here to see some ex-expatriates who used to live in Berlin – but also to have me time.

Indiana is always a minefield for me – a good minefield, but a minefield nevertheless. Despite having moved away from Bloomington some 8 years ago, I still have a ton of friends and I find myself constantly hanging out with people – there’s never enough time.

But, that said, I had to leave, and the constraint set dictated leaving Thursday – and when I made the reservation back in April I had no way of knowing how good a decision that was. Wednesday was warm in the Midwest. Thursday was scorching: soaring above 39C.

By the time it got that hot, I was safely wandering the streets of San Diego.

Hillcrest House Bed & Breakfast

Hillcrest House Bed & Breakfast

I stayed in Hillcrest at the Hillcrest House Bed and Breakfast. As B&Bs go, it’s fine and in a great location for the neighborhood.

However, San Diego is an American city and, to be blunt, walking is not always pleasant. I wandered a mile down University Avenue, looking at a number of shops, but I never felt truly comfortable on the street: the sidewalks are a bit too narrow and the traffic on the street goes a bit too fast for being that close to the sidewalk.

I made the most of my time though – although I had dinner with a famous university professor Thursday evening (True Food Kitchen, brand new (as in we were there for the soft opening), great food, but the atmosphere was a bit too echo-y for my personal acoustical preferences). Friday morning I had breakfast with a college friend, who I haven’t seen in years.

With my social obligations done until mid-day Saturday, I spent the rest of Friday doing nothing: I took a walk that landed me in Balboa Park – the north-south streets were far more pleasant to walk up and down than University Avenue. I also got a fair amount of reading done, and went to the gym.

I even did a tiny bit of shopping – but it turns out that it’s hard to spend money. At Babette Schwartz, after I picked out some $40 worth of stuff, the clerk demanded to see my ID after I handed her my credit card. I pointed out that she wasn’t allowed to ask for it per the agreement she made with MasterCard. She refused to back down and I walked out. I had better success at Martin and Wall in talking down their clerk from demanding to see my ID – I pointed out that as long as the signature on the back of the credit card matched the one on the credit card slip, then it was fine – although he tried to get me to autograph a blank piece of paper.


The famous sign that spans University Avenue.

My time in Hillcrest ends shortly – I’m writing this whilst at Filter Coffeehouse (thanks to PDK for the tip). Shortly I’ll be heading off to see the ex-expatriates. I’d link to their blog, but I believe that it is still down.

3 comments to Decamped to Hillcrest, San Diego

  • Mateo

    Oh Adam…always trying to cause problems! Lol!

  • What’s with all the ID requests?

  • Mateo – Always 🙂

    CN Heidelberg – little people think that they’re saving the banking system by demanding to see IDs. But I won’t show them my German Driver’s License (it’s a driver’s license, not an ID) and I didn’t have my passport on me (and even if I did, I wouldn’t show it to them). I don’t know what’s going through their minds, but I bet the clerk think that she managed to save the world by not making the sale to me. Instead she cost her store $40 in revenue. Guess they could afford to lose the revenue in these excellent economic times!