Day 7 (July 16, 2016 – Los Angeles, California): “The Long Marathon Drive”
It was 4am when we awoke to my alarm. Given the groans that we all collectively had, we probably could have used the added sleep, but we verbally committed to an early start last night so we could be home at a reasonable hour this evening. Indeed, ahead of us was a marathon 12-hour drive, and it was now time to make good on our verbal commitments.
It was 5:10am when I started to load up the car. I actually used some of the time to get caught up on my blogging while Mom was preparing some hot water for tea as well as coffee. Then, by 5:20am, we were finally leaving Medford, which was a little later than I had anticipated, but with the additional daylight, that would make it a little easier to spot deer that might dash out on the I-5 thereby lessening the probability of striking and damaging the rental car with one.
I took the first shift of the drive due to the deer concerns, and so the drive south on the I-5 was pretty smooth going though we did make one quick stop at a Burger King at 6:35am near Weed, CA (with Mt Shasta views going against the rising sun). That was for a quick brekkie since we kind of skipped out on it back at Medford. Fifteen minutes later, we continued the drive.
After getting through the familiar curvy part of the I-5 between Shasta and Redding, it was then very smooth going on the I-5 due south. We’d eventually fill up at some really cheap gas place a short distance north of Willows, CA, and that was where we switched driving duties so Dad took over while I was controlling the radio for some sports talk (680 KNBR, which was a good sports station in the Bay Area was getting good reception for much of this drive).
The drive would continue as we’d eventually pull up into Santa Nella (just north of the Los Banos junction) for an In N Out lunch at 11:50am. It was quite busy here, but we managed to get our food quickly, and by 12:15pm, we were back in the car again. While in Santa Nella, we also filled up for some more reasonably priced gas at the Valero compared to the usual Shell or Chevron or 76 and it would turn out to be the very last fill-up for the remainder of the drive.
By 4:50pm, we were finally back in the Rowland Heights area for some Chinese food at the Earthen Restaurant. This was always one of those comfort food places that we’d frequent whenever we’d hang out with the parents. And since we hadn’t been here in a while (especially since Julie had me on a pretty much no-carb diet), I guess I mind as well splurge here before resuming the Paleo diet once again.
Eventually at 5:50pm, we were chilling out at the parents place. A couple of hours later, Julie and Tahia finally showed up, and that pretty much allowed the kids to play with each other again (as Joshua and Sophia were there) while Julie and I were catching up along with the parents. Eventually by about 9:30pm, we were finally back at home, and our tired bodies could finally get some rest and relaxation, especially since I had been going on some pretty minimal sleep (roughly 4 hours per night on average) throughout the week. So I’m sure it was much needed on my part.
And now it was time to get back to life, back to reality…