I flew into San Diego on Sunday night around 7:00 p.m. local time. I was pretty exhausted from 9 hours of travelling, and I really just wanted to see the ocean before I went to bed. I went looking for the hotel shuttle but eventually settled for a $20 Crazy Taxi blast through the downtown area before finally getting to my hotel. This accomplished two things: first, I got super motion sick as expected; second, I did get a glimpse of the whole area and what I believe to be was the ocean. Cool.

A view right outside my hotel

I woke up extremely early Monday, at what I believe was 5:00 a.m. local time. This is right around when I usually start getting woken up by Audrey and Ellie as she prepares to leave for work, as it was 8:00 a.m. EST. By 5:30 I was awake enough to chat with Ellie as she drove to work. I decided I probably should try to get more sleep, but by 7:00 a.m. I knew it wasn’t happening. I unpacked a little bit, grabbed my Vibrams, and headed out.

I really wanted to get to the ocean. I think it might be something hardwired into me from when I was little. One of the first things we always did when we got to Cape Cod was to head to the ocean. I assume it was to just check and make sure it was still there. Thus, by natural instinct, I started my morning run to what I thought was just a couple of miles away.

By the time I got out of my hotel’s little bay area, I realized how much of an endeavor I really was about to start. At around two miles, I had just gotten to Sea World, and I stopped to ask a security guard how far the ocean was. He kind of looked at me, then slightly grinned and said “Oh, just about three more miles straight up the road.” Seriously? . . . By my math, this little run to the ocean was now going to be a ten-mile run, and that’s if the guy estimated right.

Let me tell you, he was pretty spot on. After running parallel to the Sea World parking lots for a good forty-five minutes—and no, that is not an exaggeration—I stopped to ask myself if I really had it in me to go all the way there. The problem, you see, was I knew I could get there . . . but getting back was going to be the problem. Normally when I run, I try to make a loop, not a beeline straight away.

A view overlooking Mission Bay

I decided that I really couldn’t make the journey, and, defeated, I turned around. I made it all of one-tenth of a mile back to the hotel when I once again stopped and thought, “no, **** this, I am seeing the mother ****** ocean.” I kept going at a slight trot, completely drained. I can honestly say I am not used to 70-degree sunny weather. The sun sapped my energy. I needed hydration and something to eat pretty badly as I was already an hour into the trip. Luckily, the local surfer neighborhood had an open Subway, so I totally ate fresh. Chugging half a bottle of water and scarfing an oatmeal cookie, I made it to the stupid ocean.

It must be genetic to feel the need to have to see the ocean right away.

Honestly, the Pacific Ocean looks pretty much the same as the Atlantic Ocean. Pretty wide and open, and pretty blueish greenish blackish. . . . I was pretty happy to see some dolphins swimming close to shore, as well as the homeless guy sleeping on the beach. I suppose being a bum in California beats the hell out of being one in Buffalo.

My return trip was pretty uneventful, as I had conserved some water for the way back. I was completely drained, but at least I knew the route to take and approximately how far I had to go. All in all, it was around a 15-kilometer run, just under 10 miles. I have to be honest, I did walk more than I usually do, but I tried to keep up at least a trot the majority of the time.

I got back to the hotel over two hours after I had left . . . completely drained. Luckily I found some fruit juice and a muffin—the food of champions right there. After all that, I am pretty happy. It felt great to get a ridiculous run under my belt before the clock hit 10:00 a.m. I also felt like I accomplished something by seeing the stupid ocean. My dad will be proud.