Last week our good friends from Atlanta (Jeff, Jody and Jonah) were out on the West Coast for a special occasion. Jonah was one of four kids all across the nation who won a spot as a guest on the Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice Awards. The Nickelodeon folks flew them out, picked them up in a limo and put them up in the swanky Loews Hotel right on the beach in Santa Monica.
Jonah appeared on national television and got to rub shoulders with the Black Eyed Peas, Ben Stiller, Justin Timberlake and lots of other stars.
We trekked up to Santa Monica and wandered around the Third Street Promenade while the Ledfords were cruising PCH in Malibu. Emma and Henry loved the dinosaur fountains, as you may be able to tell.
Before dinner we wandered around the Santa Monica Pier and took a ride on the carousel.
While the kids rode ’round and ’round I talked to an old fellow who had lived in Santa Monica his entire life. He had ridden the carousel all through his childhood, when it was brand new and was only a nickel a ride. (Inflation has pushed it up to a buck, which I still thought was a bargain.) They had a brass ring and everything back then, he sighed.
After the carousel we hit the beach for a few minutes as the sun set. The kids threw sand and played chase – both with themselves and the gulls wandering along the shore. We ended up chowing down on shrimp at Bubba Gump Shrimp Company for dinner.
Finally, reluctantly, we had to start the long drive home to get our own kids in bed and so that Jonah could get some shut-eye before his big dress rehearsal the following morning. No worries, though… we’d see him again soon on the television!