Sacramento, Part 3.

On the Fourth o' July, we put those unlimited miles to use, and drove two hours to San Fransisco. We had my laptop on so that the iPod could charge, and played music through the iPod which was connected to the radio. Complicated much? Plus also, TJ is hott with two t's. Especially wearing my sunglasses. And that blue plaid shirt. (I love that shirt.)

The purpose of our trip was to visit my dear Aunt Kathy. She wasn't able to come to our wedding, so TJ and not yet met her, and it had been over two years since I last saw her. I can't remember its name, but the cat was hilarious. As Aunt K said, "It's part cat, part Jack Russell Terrier." It did act more like a dog than a cat, begging for attention and performing for us. TJ teased it with a laser pen for most of our visit. It was so good to talk with Aunt Kathy and for her to meet TJ. We talked for about two hours (hardly long enough) before we had to go. I was also glad to hear that she had a good impression of TJ. Not that I would love him any less, but it's nice to know that one of your favorite aunts likes your husband.

Unfortunately, although we really wanted to, we didn't make it to Pier 39 or for much sight seeing. We did take the Golden Gate Bridge drive over the Bay. It was TJ's first time seeing it (and we didn't have time to get out of the car!). We actually drove over three bridges. I can't remember their names, but TJ was enthralled with it. He became a little boy, pointing out the big barges and little tug boats along the way. We'll have to go back some day so he can get a real taste for one of my favorite cities to visit. (Although we both agreed we could never live there.)

From San Francisco, we drove to Stockton. Stockton just happens to be one of the top 5 most dangerous cities in the nation. When we told people we were going there, they would usually say something along the lines of "Well, it was nice knowing you." Comforting, really. And to think TJ served almost a year of his mission there without major incident. Our first order of business was food. We were starving. There is a large Asian population in Stockton (mostly Hmong and Cambodian), so we had to get some authentic Pho (pronounced fuh). It's basically rice noodles, meat, vegetables, and sauces you add in yourself. It was a spicy, interesting experience. Good, but not something I would get on a regular basis. 

This man was No. 1 on TJ's "People to See in Stockton" list. This is Bro. Black. Bro. Black's wife, Sis. Black, passed away shortly after TJ and I had gotten engaged. The amazing story is that TJ had helped her to quit smoking and become active in the Church again. A few months after TJ got home (and a few months before her passing) Bro. and Sis. Black were able to be sealed in the Temple. Such an awesome story. Bro. Black is one of the neatest men I've ever met. He has such a great spirit about him. He laughed and smiled the whole time we were there, and had such a huge heart. TJ tells me that there were numerous times when the Blacks bought groceries for the missionaries, and he was always willing to drive them anywhere. He teared up a bit when we had to say goodbye. 

Sis. Wilson always let TJ email his family on his P-Days. She's a sweet lady, and a teacher herself! It was neat to visit with her and her son.

We decided to get a hotel in Lodi, just outside of Stockton. We were also introduced to the amazingness that is Priceline, and got a great deal on our room. After checking in, we drove around the small town looking for fireworks. It was a long process, but we watched some from a park. And then got stuck in traffic for about thirty minutes because it was so crazy trying to get out of there. Apparently the fireworks in Lodi are popular. Then we got a Carl's Jr. Shake and fries, and two Taco Bell burritos. Taco Bell was OUT OF CHICKEN AND BEANS. Tell me, HOW is this possible?? Nevertheless, our stomachs were satiated. 

The next morning, we ate breakfast at the hotel, then packed up and headed back into Stockton. We drove through some of the roughest neighborhoods and TJ told me stories about shootings and being chased by gangsters on his bike. Then, we went to the two places TJ had been raving about. One being GK Mongolian Barbeque. It was tasty! Even though we were stuffed, we couldn't leave without going to Lolli Cup. Lolli Cup is a tea and coffee shop, but they also sell what's called "Snow"...which was kinda like a milkshake and shaved ice combined. The twist was the Boba! Boba are tapioca balls that come in two sizes, regular and mini. We got the mini, because they are a weird texture and the regular can be a bit much. It was interesting and really yummy. A perfect treat to help us cool off!

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