If you're going to San Francisco, be sure to wear a jacket
Especially if you are me. Because I am cold all the time. Why am I going on all these vacations to places colder than where I live?
So it's occurred to me that if I don't get to blogging about San Francisco, I may never get around to it, with trip #2 (family cruise) approaching rapidly. So here are the highlights that come to mind.
We kicked off (after a trip to Whole Foods for wine and Smartwater) things with a boat trip that took us under the Golden Gate Bridge. It was nearly open ocean and the boat was rocking pretty good, which was fun. I've only ever seen the bridge in pictures/video, so it was really cool to be so close to it. I love art deco, so San Francisco was just full of eye candy. We also rode past Alcatraz, which was really just enough Alcatraz for me.
We ate a lot of really good food while we were there, but one of my favorite things was sharing a loaf of super-fresh sourdough bread after the boat trip. Combined with espresso, it was yummy. Side note: I have to love a city where you can get an espresso every 10 feet.
We went to a Giants game the next day, had lots of beer and food, and watched the Giants win like 13-0. AT&T Park or whatever corporate sponsor it's named after now is really beautiful, but the giant Coke bottle in left field really bugged. Kind of ruins the classic look...
This was the night we went to Cafe Vesuvio and drank too many shots of Fernet. Eileen had read it described as like drinking Robitussin and getting punched in the nose. I think that was pretty accurate. Cafe Vesuvio was really cool, though, and we managed to write some haikus (previously posted) while drinking.
On Monday, we drove out to Berkeley to visit the Scharffen Berger chocolate factory. I was feeling a little funky from the Fernet, but massive amounts of chocolate samples definitely helped with that. There were hairnets involved, and I spent a whole lot of money on chocolate at the gift shop.
After Scharffen Berger, we had planned to go to 826 Valencia (aka the pirate store), but they were closed for inventory. Arrrrrrrgh! So we went to Lombard Street instead, where Eileen and Josh serenaded us with their rendition of "Mr. Jones" as we drove down the crazy-crooked street. I have video but I can't seem to get it to work with any program on my computer. One of these days hopefully I will post it. Then we ALL proceeded to rock out to "Electric Avenue" as we drove through Nob Hill. That probably sounds totally bizarre if you were not there, but trust me, it was freaking hilarious. Sadly, no video of that.
We then went to Haight-Ashbury for patchouli smelling, record buying, and drinks at yet another awesome hip bar that Eileen had heard about (how does she DO that?). Turns out, a friend of Josh's was working there, and he invited us out to karaoke that night. It was a totally random thing to do, but we are totally random people. There was much singing, including Eileen's first-ever karaoke appearance to ring in her 30th birthday -- with a shot of Fernet in hand.
Tuesday, my last full day in San Francisco, was hangover day for quite a few of us, but not me. I have my mild disagreement with Fernet the day before to thank for that, I think. It made me take it a little slower. Heh. We went on another tour this day -- this time the Anchor Steam Brewery. It was cool to see a brewery on an entirely different scale from Budweiser. And the samples, again, were excellent.
We did make it to the pirate store again, and this time it was open. I like to think that I showed good self restraint in only buying as much as I did. Heh.
We wound down the day with a delicious birthday dinner for Eileen, and yummy drinks up on the top floor of our hotel.
It was an awesome trip, and once again made me grateful to have friends who like to do things like fly to far-off coasts to party it up and rock down to electric avenue.