I stayed mainly in Pasadena today and made good on my promise to have a low-key last day of vacation. As a mild insomniac, I pretty much always wake up a few times a night, particularly when I’m traveling, but last night I didn’t budge all night. That was nice.
- Walked downtown for breakfast (machaca at Andy’s Coffee Shop) and what turned out to be a very frustrating library run.
- Hit a couple of used bookstores on Colorado Boulevard.
- Took a little drive through Arcadia, Monrovia, Alhambra, and San Marino.
- Had soul-sucking conversations with my parents (the second in as many days with my dad).
And then there was dinner:
This place is one of the most wonderful restaurants I’ve found in many years. It’s a time capsule, circa 1965, and is pretty much every restaurant I used to eat at with my parents when we traveled back in the 1970s. The food was OK if a bit pricey–this is the kind of place hat still thinks it’s splurgy–but he atmosphere was amazing, from the elevator music (e.g. an instrumental version of “King of the Road”) to the genuinely friendly waitress who knew all the old people by name and played with the babies. This was not “by the manual” friendliness but the rather maternal behavior of a older lady who’d probably worked there for years, probably lives in the neighborhood, and really loves her job. That she switched effortlessly between English and Spanish was a plus too.
I left here in a really good mood, happy that such a place could still exist in SoCal.
One more picture:
Gotta be up early tomorrow to drive from Pasadena to LAX at the peak of rush hour. Wish me luck.