Day 4 | Rest and relax day - The Piers

Today was a much better day.  It was also Valentines Day.

O'Regan's cold was worse but he was feeling up to going out.  He was also still recovering from yesterday's surprise events.  After a long breakfast and a very slow start we spent a very relaxing morning at the hotel easing into the day.

O'Regan wanted to visit Game Stop to see how different it was to what we had in Australia.  So we headed out just after midday.  We had lunch at Panda Express, a Chinese fast food place which was very adverage but the staff were most helpful on possible attractions while we were in town.

We had a quick look in Ross Dress for Less (which is a clearance outlet store) and still managed to pick up a couple of bargains.

Long Beach's Belmont Pier was next on our list and what a stunning day it was.  Yet another cloudless sky and temperatures in the high 20's.  There were a lot of people fishing off the pier and actually catching fish too.  We noticed a lot of ships waiting in the harbour and also oil rigs off shore.  We saw a Pelican which was beautiful.  O'Regan wanted to get his photo with it and wondered how close he could get - fairly close before Mr Pelican warned him not to come any closer.  We also saw a lone Sea Lion who entertained us and lots of others for a while.

Up in the sky we noticed a plane pulling a sign that read '... will you marry me ...' - so very valentines. 

We drove up to Santa Monica Pier as O'Regan wanted to see the Ferris Wheel (and yes today was all about O'Regan).  Traffic was ridiculous being a long weekend (for Presidents Day on Monday) and valentines day.  The 40 minute trip took over an hour.  We found a parking building (or as they call it here 'Parking Structure') a few blocks from the pier as it seemed impossible to get any closer.  It was lovely walking through the busy sidewalks with lots of loved up couples everywhere and also families enjoying the warm evening.  We strolled along the ocean front taking in the fabulous views and stunning sunset.  There are some amazing houses sitting seaside.

The pier had a busy carnival atmosphere which was infectious.  Back in the shopping area we found a food court in the Santa Monica Place mall where the boys had Sushi made to order and Angus and Rosie had Johnny Rockets.  The service was so abysmal it was humorous.  We noticed that everyone here seems to have dogs and they go everywhere with them - including dinner!

Then it was back to the motel.  The traffic was still crazy busy.  We witnessed some road rage on our way home with the car in the lane next to us getting annoyed that the person in front was not going fast enough or moving out of the fast lane and was honking his horn and flashing his lights.  The person in front seemed oblivious.  But generally we have noticed people drive assertively but courteously and will always let you in.  We have seen a lot of across five lane changes to make an off ramp and no one seems to bat an eyelid.

Highlights

McKay | Watching the sea lion.
O'Regan | Seeing some of the places that are in Grand Theft Auto (video game).
Angus | The atmosphere at Santa Monica pedestrian mall.
Rosie | The pelican and the sea lion.