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Published: April 7th 2011
Well today was a big day for us, we set out with enough knowledge of the city to be dangerous 😊 but it all worked out beautifully! I must say the people in San Francisco are so friendly and helpful! Every time a native saw us looking at a map they came up to ask us if we needed help finding something. It was quite amazing for a complete stranger to ask if you need help and be happy to offer it.
We bought an all day pass for all the public transportation in S.F and Mom could not wait to ride the cable cars, she was almost jumping up and down when we arrived at the place where they manually turn them around. (I have pictures and a video of this but I still do not have access to a computer where I can upload them, but once I do its going to be an overload!) After the operators had turned one around we boarded it and she started asking the driver so many questions that I think she started to annoy him, but she was grinning from ear to ear and it was adorable. We rode
the cable cars to the cable car museum/workplace, it is amazing to see the actual cables being wheeled and pulled though this building where it realigns the cables and sends them back out again.
At one point we hopped on one and it was too crowded to sit, so we tried our hand at standing and hanging on to the side, and after being instructed on proper baggage placement on your body and hand placement on the cable car we were off! It is quite something to be literally hanging off of a moving vehicle while going down the steep hills of San Fran (its pretty much like the start of a roller coaster, only you only end up going 9.5 mph, but who's counting).
We then rode it to Chinatown (the driver told us to walk 2 blocks and once we saw a bunch of signs we couldn't read then we had reached our destination) we scoped out 2 places that we were going to go back and eat that night, but we never did, more on that later.
At one point we were riding the cable cars and hanging onto the outside when Mom realized that the people
sitting in front of us were speaking Turkish. She asked them if indeed they were Turkish and they were amazed that she could tell, and she had a great time speaking to them (and I had a wonderful time listening since I am going to be there in a little over 6 weeks time!). It was wonderful to hear them speak about their country with everything that is going on and how they don't like American politics, but love Americans themselves (phew). They did say that there isn't much freedom of speech and one of the girls who we were talking to said she writes in a blog and that she has to be careful what she writes on that as well. Overall is was wonderful for us to ask questions back and fourth with these women, they were beautiful, articulate, and so nice.
After that we had lunch at a nice little organic cafe and had salads and a flight of cheese's made from cow, sheep, and goat's milk (I have never had cheese from sheep's milk, but it is amazing and if you add a wee bit of honey its superb!).
After lunch we went and had an
Irish coffee at the Buena Vista, the birthplace of the Irish coffee, I drank one just to say I did, but a few years back after a heavy drinking night on Irish whiskey I now cannot stand the stuff, so I was only able to finish half of the Irish coffee. We met some very nice travelers there who were from the Portland Oregon region and we talked to them for almost an hour! I think California just makes people happy and friendly.
Both Mom and I were so tired from exploring the city; hoping on and off the cable cars, trolleys, and buses, that we didn't have the energy to fight the crowds in Chinatown, so we ate locally at a quaint Italian restaurant. It was our last night in San Francisco and we will miss it!
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