Published: April 16th 2012
April 16th 2012
Well, we spent our last few days with mom and dad in San Francisco, and what a blast we had! I would like to say that we did it all, but some things will have to wait until our next visit. :)
We started off Saturday with a stop in front of the Golden Gate Bridge. I had not realized the significance of this bridge for dad until I noticed how excited he was to see it. To me, it's just another big bridge. Mike and I have driven over many big bridges in our adventures. But dad explained that he learned about the GGB when he was in school, and always dreamed of seeing it in person. So this was a dream come true for him. The pictures show his excitement well, I think.
We drove over the bridge to get into the city, and we headed right away to Chinatown, where we did a little shopping and had lunch at a great, inexpensive restaurant. Thank you to the folks at Travelocity for the recommendation! Mom liked Chinatown so much we ended up going again on Sunday for another hour or so.
we drove around for a while and saw different landmarks. In no particular order, we visited: Lombard Street; the corner or Haight and Ashebury, where the hippie movement started; Cow's Hollow; Ghiradelli Square, where I had my first "drinking chocolate" - wow!; and the Castro district. San Francisco definitely lived up to its reputation as a very open city, as we saw (at least) one gentleman - completely naked! - chatting up a storm with a friend on the side of the street. The conversation in the van went something like this:
Monique: "Mike, is that guy... naked?"
Mike: "Yes, I believe he is!"
Dad: "What? Someone's naked?"
Mike says he heard mom giggle off and on for the next few minutes. Ha! Ha!
After such an exciting day in the big city, we went back to our hotel in Petaluma.
On Sunday, we met up with dad's cousin, Bernard, and his girlfriend, who took mom and dad under their wing for the afternoon. They went to coit tower and telegraph hill, then to Pier 39 for lunch. Mike and I spent that time at the pier, walking on the boardwalk,
watching the sea lions bask in the sun, and people watching. We also had lunch there. The fish chowder in a sourdough bread bowl was a must (I hate clam chowder!), and it was delicious.
Later on, we met up with mom and dad again and headed to Chinatown so mom could do some window shopping, as she calls it. Mike and I have come to the conclusion that if you know Chinatown well, there's no reason to shop at Wal-Mart or any big box store... ever. Because you can find anything and everything in Chinatown shops: clothes, groceries (anything ranging from apples to tripes to tea), restaurants, and even dish towels! And it's a much more fun experience.
Oh, and did I mention the hills? You would have to be crazy to drive a standard car in this city! Check our the pictures!
We really enjoyed San Francisco. It seems that the drivers are agressive, but the pedestrians are relaxed. Maybe people are in a rush to get to where they are going so they can take it easy? Whatever it is, we enjoyed the vibe. I just wish we had more time to experience different
aspects of this city. I guess we'll just have to come again!
Around supper time, we left city centre to go to our hotel with mom and dad so they could relax a little before taking their flight. "Relaxing" is code for "having a glass of wine", hence the picture of mom with a glass-size bottle of Georges Duboeuf. :)
It was fun to have mom and dad along for this leg of our trip. I hope they enjoyed themselves as much as we did and will take with them fond memories of this time with us, even if our schedule was a little hectic. I would not hesitate to invite them to join us again!
There are more photos below