We got in FREE since military families get in free once per year. The kids touched sharks. The Skytower lifted us all up for gorgeous views of the park and Mission Bay. Eloise hated the sea star whirly ride. Everyone loved the killer whale show and kid section and aquariums. The kids were totally blown away by the underwater killer whale viewing tank. That was really neat. AND there were trick or treat stations set up all around the park for the kids to get big handfuls of legitimately tasty candy. We bought a family photo on the gondola ride, and at sunset, when we walked by the Hawaiian pearl diving booth, Chris and Isaac picked out oysters for Eloise and me, then had our pearls mounted into Hawaiian settings.
Start to finish, it was a great day. Chris was being kind of militant about going, which annoyed me until I realized he was working out Dad Guilt for deploying this week last year. That made more sense.
My mom told me a long time ago about finding doubles, and her dad making them into a pair of earrings for her. When I told her we were at Seaworld she reminded me that’s where they’d done that, when she was pregnant with my oldest brother, Luke. So when we walked by the same place a few hours later, we couldn’t help but stop.
For dinner we had beer and tacos in the castaway cafe nearby. Isaac was showing me the waterfall that had soaked him and Chris on a ride, and when I came back, the shrimp and fish were all gone from my taco. “You just ate my shrimp?!” I accused Chris in confusion, because he’d turned down the taco when I offered it previously. Chris started laughing. “I didn’t eat it! It must have been that seagull!” Sure enough, both the seagull and another huge lurking bird were suspiciously gone…and I’d still been eating the beans and stuff out of the taco! Gross! Scavenger germs!
By this point Isaac was cold and it was almost bedtime. He started crying for no reason, even with a Shamu cookie (“I’m at Seaworld, in Castaway Cafe with my family, eating a cookie! Nothing could be worse!”) Clearly, it was time to go. But on our way out we passed the killer whale lights and music show. Soon Isaac and Eloise were jumping and dancing, arms raised to the night, completely enthralled.
It had been a pretty trying week of hotel living—a massive room change, very hot weather, no AC, lots of room maintenance and conflicting info from the annoyed hotel staff, grouchy kids, extremely late study nights for Chris. And while we had great opportunities to see Chris’ family, unfortunately that came with over two hours of driving several nights in a row.