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A family's take on vacation to San Diego

Published: Sunday, March 27 2011 3:00 p.m. MDT

SeaWorld was horrible. They have these shows with big, scary fish that splash you with really cold, disgusting water! Good thing my dad was there to hold me. He had a backpack. When the fish started splashing my dad put his backpack in front of my face. He said it was cheaper than buying a poncho. (©istockphoto.com/wibs24) SeaWorld was horrible. They have these shows with big, scary fish that splash you with really cold, disgusting water! Good thing my dad was there to hold me. He had a backpack. When the fish started splashing my dad put his backpack in front of my face. He said it was cheaper than buying a poncho. (©istockphoto.com/wibs24)

Thinking about San Diego for spring break? If you are going with family, you might want to read this “review” by my children and wife.

Sam (2 at the time): The drive wasn’t too bad. I have a diaper rash from too much milk. My parents put juice or water in my sippy cup now. In the car we watched a lot of movies. The only movie I didn’t like was Josh’s movie: University of Arizona football highlights. We’ve watched that movie a million times.

SeaWorld was horrible. They have these shows with big, scary fish that splash you with really cold, disgusting water! Good thing my dad was there to hold me. He had a backpack. When the fish started splashing my dad put his backpack in front of my face. He said it was cheaper than buying a poncho.

One more thing: SeaWorld wouldn’t let me go on any of the fun rides because I wasn’t 42 inches tall. Talk about discrimination! I threw a fit, but no one cared, except my parents. They had to take turns on rides.

Zach (5 at the time): I spent most of the time in the car fighting with Josh. He’s older, but I can take him. No one tells me what to do and no one invades my personal space.

I burp a lot and make other noises my dad says I’m not allowed to call by their real names. It’s really funny and gets me into trouble every time. I don’t care. I just tell my parents I’m sorry and I won’t do it again and they stop bugging me.

I liked the movies in the car, too. The movie I picked is “Sky High.” It is about superheroes learning their powers in high school. I’m a superhero, too. I don’t know what my power is, but I’m really good at jumping from bed to bed in the hotel room. I almost jumped out the window a few times. That would have been fun because we were on the 21st floor of the hotel.

We went to SeaWorld for two days. I palled around with my brothers. We sat in the “Splash Zone.” It was hard to walk around in wet underpants all day, but it was worth it. On the roller coaster I liked to ride with my hands up. Scottie was the only other person in our family brave enough to ride with his hands in the air on the first day. I told you I was tougher than Josh.

Anna (5 at the time): I loved watching “Lady and the Tramp” in the car. I don’t think it is fair I have to watch four boy movies — especially football highlights — to every one girl movie.

When am I going to get some sisters?

I’m mommy’s little helper. I liked to carry her purse and help her make food. I’m also mommy’s little teller. I like to tell her everything that happens. I tell her when a car drives by our car. I tell her when I see a light. I tell her when I see someone else. I tell her when I see an “A” – that’s how you spell my name. I tell her when Sam needs a cracker or his bottle. I tell her when the movie in the car is over. I tell her when my brothers break a rule, especially Zach. He gets in trouble a lot — he burps and makes weird noises. Why do boys think that’s funny?

Josh (7 at the time): We went to California and stayed at a really nice hotel. I was the only one who didn’t run in the hotel hallways and I kept my voice low the whole time.

I hated how Scottie kept watching Cartoon Network in the hotel. Luckily we had two TVs and my dad let me watch ESPN. I didn’t want to go to SeaWorld because there was an ESPN special on a former U of A kicker who plays pro football now. He kicked a last-second, game-winning field goal Monday night as time expired. It was really long — 53 yards. The other team called time out just as his team snapped the ball, so he had to kick it again. He made it again. It was the No. 1 play on ESPN that week.

I ended up liking SeaWorld, especially the sharks and the roller coaster. I bought a shark tooth necklace. I broke it as soon as I got into the car on our way home. Scottie tried to fix it, but it all came apart. My mom says she’ll fix it later, but dad said, “Please don’t! Boys shouldn’t be wearing necklaces.”

Scottie (10 at the time): SeaWorld was fun, but when I’m a parent I’m going to make my vacations more educational for my kids. There was ship museum close to the hotel, but my parents didn’t want to go. It had five different kinds of ships, which would have been really educational. Instead we went and saw the USS Midway, an aircraft carrier that fought in World War II and other wars. The USS Midway had flight simulators, but my parents wouldn’t pay the $25 to let me fly a jet, so I had to sit in an old jet that didn’t move while my dad took a picture. It was lame.

Josh is obsessed with sports. What kid would rather watch ESPN than Cartoon Network? I wish my parents had Cartoon Network. It showed Scooby Doo a lot. I’ve seen all of the episodes already. The only thing better than Cartoon Network is Brian Regan. I have all of his jokes memorized. My dad doesn’t like him very much, probably because Brian’s a lot funnier than my dad.

The “Soak Zone” was my home at SeaWorld. I begged to get soaked. My brothers always wanted to sit by me, even though they didn’t care as much as I do about getting soaked. It was fun, except I wore pants the second day and walked around like I was pretty chapped.

I picked “Tom and Jerry” as my movie for the car. I call it Thomas and Gerald since that’s Tom and Jerry’s real names. I know lots of important, educational facts like that.

Jill (30-something at the time): What a fun vacation! The kids had a blast and we loved being with them all of that time.

I packed a lot of food for the trip to try and keep costs down and stay within our budget. Scott gets embarrassed when we eat homemade sandwiches at the cafÉ while everyone around us is eating gourmet SeaWorld food. I can tell he didn’t grow up as the oldest of eight children.

I liked SeaWorld, but I got cold quickly on those wet rides. The second day I bought a poncho and it helped. Scott grumbled about spending $6 on a poncho (“that’s enough money to buy a nice hot dog,” he complained), but he used it more religiously than I did.

Scott (younger than Jill): I think you know what I think of San Diego.

Scott Brown practices bankruptcy law by day with Lewis and Roca LLP in Phoenix, Ariz., and moonlights as a humor columnist by night.

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