As the Fourth of July weekend approached, it occurred to me that I had nowhere to go, nowhere to be. This is just one of the many side-effects of not planning more than a day ahead. For the past two months, anytime I made plans that stretched beyond the following day had a tendency to fall apart (as in explode, disintegrate, and fragment into tiny pieces). When I worked up the nerve to plan a 10-day trip with Cousin #3, a tree moved in my way.
I found myself in San Diego to see my Dad for his 89th birthday. Staying with my parents, who despite having a 3-bedroom house with a hide-a-bed in the den/3rd bedroom, involves sleeping on the couch in the living room. The den has a television set, as does the kitchen, my dad’s office/2nd bedroom, and my parents’ bedroom. At 89, my dad is set in his ways. The television set he likes to watch is in the den. I don’t want to make him choose between Two-and-a-Half Men and me. I wouldn’t win.
The thought of sleeping on my parents’ couch for an extended period of time was simply too uncomfortable. Not physically, but psychically. I mean, really? At my age? At my parents’ age? As Mammy from Gone With the Wind would say, “It ain’t fittin’, Miz Scarlett. It just ain’t fittin.”
I knew I’d have to find a place to stay, fast, before leaving for the San Francisco Bay Area after the Fourth of July. But where? That’s when I remembered the Oceanside Harbor in north San Diego County. It’s basically a large parking lot with no hookups. No electricity. No water. Not a place likely to be full if I pulled in during late morning on Tuesday. I was right.
Upon reflection, however, I could have chosen a better spot. I’m situated where I am because it was the first open space I saw that provided ample room to maneuver. Also, a man in his 50s was nearby adjusting chairs on the back of his RV. I figured him as the perfect victim to ask for help guiding me in. I was right. Again. I was on a roll.
Once settled in, I took stock of my surroundings and noted the public bathroom approximately 100 feet away. The beach must be expecting quite a crowd because I also spotted outhouses lined up alongside. In the other direction I saw the Oceanside Bait Shop, which is located on a floating dock in the inlet in front of me and opens for business to passing boaters at 5 a.m. I’m situated roughly between the bathroom and the bait. I’m wondering whether there’s any chance the smells wafting in from the bathroom and from the rotting worms and/or fish will cancel each other out.
I must say, this isn’t exactly what I had in mind.