Best way I can answer is this:
Hey, let's go browse around the neighborhood and have some dinner. Want to go to Mission Valley? NO! Way to much traffic and corporations. Let's go up to North Park or Hillcrest. The restaurants are awesome, great music too. And, the Hillcrest Farmers market is the BEST!
Welcome to America's Finest City (soon). Seriously, North Park and Hillcrest are among my favorite areas of San Diego.
All my best,