Wednesday morning dawned and it was kinda of overcast but that went away early. Robert and Phil got up early and donned their matching polo shirts, and went off to their conference at Point Loma Nazarene University. I surfed the net some catching up on emails and facebook and such. Around 10 I decided to look at the transit system, I wanted to see how to get to Petco Park by bus and train and such. I have been spoiled by Trimet (it pains me to say that), I thought it would be a fairly quick trip in a town this size. The closest bus stop to me was about four blocks away (no problem), but here comes the problem. A bus line taking people to downtown along one of the major thoroughfares in town, only runs once every half hour. So I had to get going or I would have to wait another hour for a bus. I got dressed and walked to the bus stop and got there a few minutes before the bus. I got on and paid my $2.25, asked the driver, what bus I should transfer to to get to the park, he told me and I waited for a transfer. He said we don't give transfers, I would have to pay the fare again when I got on the next bus. We got downtown and I told him that I was going to walk to the ballpark and he gave me a different destination which was closer. I wasn't going to pay $2.25 for a 10 block trip. They must not have fare inspectors because I had no proof of paying my fare. Several people who got on had passes, they don't show them to the driver, they simply hold them up to a screen and it registers that they can and I would assume deducts the amount of the ticket from their card.
I got to 8th and Broadway which looked much different than when I got my tattoo on Broadway, straight out of boot camp in 1975. It is much more upscale now, I got dropped in front of a giant NBC building. I then walked to the ballpark and spent a few anxious moments at the main ticket office trying to get my ticket that I had purchased just a few hours prior. I got my ticket and went in and sat down at field level, it was a whole different perspective than the high altitude seats of the night before. I like to occasionally go to a game by myself and just soak in the majesty that is baseball. I noticed that Jaff (Jeff) Decker, #1 in the picture above was there. It was Jaffs' first major league callup, he didn't get in the game but it was nice to see him there. I had watched him progress through the Padres system in 2008 when he was first drafted. Just before the game started I went and got a refillable Coke, (sorry Diana), and a Sonoran Dog. This is a big hot dog wrapped in bacon with beans, onions, jalapenos and tomatoes on top. It reminded me and several friends of a delicacy we had consumed in Caborca, Sonora, Mexico back in 1995. Those were some fun times with Clark, Mindy, Chewy, SaraJane, Meagan and so many more on that trip.
I settled in to watch the game and the Padres scored three runs in the first inning when the pitcher walked in a couple of runs. The score at the end of the top half of the first was Padres 3-Braves 0. It was a pretty good game and at one point I went and walked around the ballpark exploring the different concessions and areas of the park. It is really a cool park and has so many great views of the city and the bay. I went to the team store and picked up a hat and a ball and then went back to my seat and watched the Padres almost give the game away in the 9th, needing three pitchers to close out the game and preserve the victory for Edinson Volquez.
After the game I called my friend Vicki Luntzel, Vicki and I worked at Young Lifes' Woodleaf together in 1980 and hadn't seen each other since 1984. We had reconnected a couple of years ago on Facebook. She came down and picked me in the maze of streets that happen after a ball game. We decided to go get something to eat and went to KC Barbecue, even if you haven't been there it may look familiar because Maverick, Iceman and Goose were all there at one point with some of their friends. I had a combo plate of ribs, chicken, fries and a local craft brew IPA which were all really good. We had a great time talking and then we went down to the waterfront and I took pictures of a couple of sculptures along the Greatest Generation Walk, there are some really cool sculptures there. I will need to come back and do a complete walk, I didn't get to see the Bob Hope grouping with he and the servicemen and women.
Then Vicki dropped me off at the hotel and I wrote on readerman some more about the trip. We made plans to get together the next day and do some sightseeing. Thursday was an off day for the Padres so there was no game to go to. I got up and did laundry and read, finished Robopocalypse, and started on Fair Coin while the laundry was running. Vicki came over and we went looking for card shops because I wanted to get some cards of Donne Wall, the Padres are having a reunion of players from the 1998 season and Wall is someone I have never been able to get a signature of. We checked out Centre City Cards, he had a ton of stuff but no organization, it was a disaster, you couldn't really shop because you would have to ask him to find something for you. Great collection but not much of a shop. We then headed out to Clairemont Sports Cards where I found exactly what I was looking for and some more, I managed to score a 1968 team photo, which was the last minor league team and featured author Larry Colton as a part of the team. Vicki then took me up to Mt. Soledad, where you can see all of San Diego it was wonderful to have her pointing out things for it, it was the most awesome part of the trip so far. They have a really neat memorial for service members atop Mt. Soledad, with lots of pictures of the service members. Then Vicki delivered me to the home of Travis (better known as Punk Rock Paint) and Kerri Peterson, I know Travis through blogging about the Padres and we had met when he drove some musician friends up to Portland doing gigs along the way. We shared Padres memories and cards until Kerri came home and then we all went out to dinner for Sushi at Yummy Sushi, it was really good, I had been looking for a conveyor sushi place but the Petersons said there weren't any in the area. Had some really good teriyaki beef and chicken along with tempura vegetables and also a plate of rainbow rolls. Then we came back to the house and Travis and I looked at more of his Padres memorabilia while Kerri got ready to go camping this weekend at Zion National Park. I went to bed and fell soundly asleep.