Day 1 (February 10, 2017 – Palm Springs, California): “Uneasy Feelings”
It was about 6:55pm when we were starting to leave home. It was raining pretty moderately at the time, which was a bit later than what was forecast. The forecast had called for rain to arrive some time around lunch time and then start to dissipate or pass by the evening and into tomorrow morning. But with the way things looked, it appeared that the rains had arrived more like 5pm and might continue through the night and even affect the weather throughout the day tomorrow.
It was non-ideal, but since Julie and I were headed to Palm Springs as sort of our little Valentine’s Day getaway, we thought that we’d be fine since we would be in the rain shadow of the San Jacinto Mountains and perhaps we wouldn’t be too terribly affected by what was going on further west in the Los Angeles basin.
But as the rains were coming down harder and harder, my next thought turned to Julie’s mom and Tahia, who were coming home by bus after Julie’s mom had to run some errands. I thought that perhaps we should be in position to help pick them up from their bus stop since it wouldn’t be pleasant having to wait at the bus stand for the next local bus as rain was coming down all around them.
So Julie got in touch with her Mom (who normally doesn’t pick up the phone), and eventually we learned that they were closer to home so we thought we could intercept them at their final bus stop then drop them off home before finally taking off to Palm Springs.
And so we waited at a nearby Jack-in-the-Box for a few minutes at around 7:10pm when Julie got a call saying that apparently her Mom had taken a “short” bus that wound up dropping them off somewhere in an adjacent city instead of closer to home. So now, we had to scramble about through the local traffic and the local street flooding before finally arriving at the Norwalk Civic Center and their rather memorable 6-way intersection.
It was a good thing that we made the call to pick them up because this complication where they were in Norwalk instead of Artesia would have really been a bit of a sticky situation, especially with the rain.
Eventually by 7:45pm, we made it back home, and then we dropped off Julie’s Mom and Tahia. Aside from getting them out of a non-ideal situation, we were happy to see them one last time before we were heading out for just the two of us (and taking a little bit of a break from Tahia).
At 7:55pm, it was still raining moderately, but now Julie and I were finally able to head out to Palm Springs for good.
The drive out along the I-10 east went fairly uneventfully though the traffic was still pretty heavy on a Friday night. Certainly the rain didn’t make it any easier so we had to make sure to keep a safe distance while also keeping with the flow of traffic.
The drive out towards Palm Springs felt longer than what I would have expected, but that was probably because we were driving in the dark and Julie was pretty much out cold from a very long day of running errands. We’d ultimately get past the familiar 330 exit towards Running Springs (man was it way out there) then out towards Cabazon and the Morongo Casino before finally heading south on the Hwy 111 in the near pitch blackness and high winds before finally arriving in downtown Palm Springs.
At 9:35pm, we arrived at the Hyatt Palm Springs, which turned out to be a pretty centrally located spot as there was quite a happening night life all around the downtown area. We were told that there was a bit of a hefty $20 per night resort fee on top of the room rate so we braced ourselves for a not-completely-free stay since we were using our Hyatt points for this weekend.
Once we finally checked in and put our stuff away, we then parked the car in some partially-complete parking structure right behind the Hyatt. The parking there was free, but we were advised that it was at our own risk since it was unsupervised. Better that and leave nothing valuable in the car than to spend $25/night on valet at the Hyatt, we thought.
And so by 10pm, we parked the car and headed back to the room with the rest of our belongings. And so began our little weekend getaway though we were trying to stay warm as the default climate control in the room was still frigidly cold despite setting the thermostat all the way up to 76F. So eventually in the middle of the night, we just shut off the AC since it wasn’t really necessary anyways…