So I'm still in SoCal and still having mixed feelings about the area. On the one hand, and probably the most important, the smog is killing me! I had forgotten how bad it is to see the air I'm breathing...but that's the case. It's not as bad today since it cooled off dramatically.
Yesterday afternoon we went to South Coast Plaza, an upscale mall here in Orange County. I really missed not having a wallet full of cash I tell you! But I'm not going into debt again for "stuff" and there was lots of "stuff" I would have loved to own :-). Anyway, I don't think this area is feeling the recession or the unemployment figures at all. Quite the opposite of malls at home - no closed stores, no empty aisles, no big signs announcing store closing final sale. Instead, there were signs announcing the upcoming opening of a Prada boutique. It was a mall full of designer stores (Michael Kors, one of my personal favorites, for one) and shoppers that weren't just window shopping. Well...we were window shopping, but most of the folks had bags full of their latest purchases.
Last night we went to Downtown Disney. We chose Tortilla Joe's for dinner, and had to wait an hour for a table. The area was seriously bustling - people everywhere, long lines for everything from having a caricature drawn to a sit-down dinner. There is an ESPN store and of course there were television monitors everywhere showing the Angels v. Yankees game that was under way. As I'd heard the other night at Chili's, collective cheers and groans with every pitch. After dinner it was after 9 p.m. which meant it was after midnight on the East Coast where the game was being played. The game went into I believe the 12th inning before the Yankees won, but not until the Angels tied it in dramatic fashion and all of the fans here thought for sure they would pull out a victory. I sure love that atmosphere!! Oh. And waiting an hour for that table was worth it. Food and service was excellent.