It was snowing like mad when we left and our flight was cancelled, so we ended up at the airport for I don't even remember how many hours, but it was a LOT, and after not making it onto the first standby flight, we ended up getting on the second one, at which point Everything Was All Okay.
Arrived in L.A., picked up rental car, drove to Valencia. And, although it eats the battery up pretty quick, I have to say that the smartphone+GPS+google-maps combo that is basically a magical map saying "you are here, and you want to go there" is freaking awesome. It was a bit of a drive, but being on a later flight meant we missed rush hour, so it wasn't that bad.
And when we got to Valencia, there was a Robb waiting for us. And that was all kinds of lovely.
And... well, Thursday night and all of Friday were great, though there's not much to tell about it. I will say that a queen-sized bed makes for very cozy sleeping.
Got introduced to In & Out Burger, and I get why it's sort of a thing.
Saturday we drove down to Hollywood and met Reid animbear and Dave (Cobb) e_ticket at Jinky's Cafe for brunch. Which was yummy. LA moments: Greg got to pull a U-turn on Sunset, so we declared him a California driver, and Dave & Reid reported seeing Trent Reznor leaving the place shortly before we got there. Celebrity near-miss! (A bit of treppenwitz: Reid wished later he'd been quick-witted enough to say "Wow, that's an awesome Trent Reznor costume!" seeing as it was Halloween...)
So we had our omelettes and tater tots and pumpkin pancakes and whatnot, and then for the sake of hanging out, the rest of us accompanied Dave while he went tie shopping for a wedding that evening. Wandering the mall, I realized that I am terminally unfashionable. Not that I care, mind you, it's just that there's this atmosphere in parts of LA that causes one to become aware of the fact. We did see some nifty Star Ward hoodies with zip-up masks, except they were egregiously overpriced, which dropped their niftiness quotient by quite a bit for me.
In the end, Dave bought a pair of Halloween-themed ties, it became mid-afternoon, and we went our separate ways. Greg & Robb went back to Valencia, while I went with Reid down to Aliso Viejo to hang out with RTRR. (I didn't realize quite how far Valencia & Aliso Viejo are from one another when I was planning the weekend. They're really not all that far distance-wise, it's just that there's all this city in the way.)
I really enjoyed the drive down, because I got to spend time talking with and getting to know Reid, who -- like his partners -- is a swell guy. (This is how swell: I asked him about the music we were listening to while we drove, because it liked it, and before I left he handed me a stack of CDs by that artist he'd burned! RTRR know how to make a guy feel appreciated.) Plus, we drove in his Mini Cooper, which is pretty tricked-out with gadgets, the most prominent being a big round GPS display in the middle of the dashboard with the speedometer around the outside edge. They are nice cars, and I'm always amazed at how roomy they are.
We got to La Casa De Osos Cuatros a bit after five, and that's probably sufficient for one journal entry. More to come!