I had an excellent vacation in San Francisco, a beautiful and manageable city by all accounts. I got to see a number of fun things in the city, including a little neighborhood exploring and a quick trip out to Napa for a day as well.
I spent all day on Thursday traveling out to California. I started out the trip tickled pink by a couple of musicians traveling on my flight to Chicago - as you can see from the picture, he's got a lovely weather-proof, traveling banjo case. Awesome.
I had only one minor delay in Chicago. I packed carefully - good clothes for layering and lots of yarn for knitting. I managed to finish a hat, and start and nearly finish a second hat en route to SFO. My friend Naito picked me up at the airport pre-knee scoping in her hot little Cooper Mini. We dodged traffic on the freeway to eventually get to her place - a rockin' old rowhouse with 4 bedrooms, several common areas and a kick-ass back porch. We chilled until the redhead had returned from the ski trip out to Tahoe. We all rendez-voused and then headed out to a delish sushi dinner.
When we got up on Friday morning, we were greeted with a beautiful sunshine filled morning that was on the warm side of brisk. Left to our own devices, and with the careful guidance of our also-redheaded hostess, we braved the Muni - one of my favorite forms of transportation. We headed toward Golden Gate Park, which is rife with touristy bits. Before hitting the park, we dawdled around The Beanery, a cute little coffee shop with our maps and books and knitting. (A woman even stopped to ask me if I knew where she could purchase some knitting needles and yarn - she must not have detected the thick air of east-coast blood about me, and I was unable to help her.)
We hit up the de Young, the Botanical Gardens and the Japanese Tea Garden - I recommend all 3. Very enjoyable.
Saturday, we hit the Golden Gate Bridge driving like the car was stolen out to wine country. Oh Napa. How do I love thee? Let me count the ways! Talk about relaxing - the rolling countryside punctuated by shrubby, rocky looking hills with over-priced mansions atop. I enjoyed our wine, and our mid-way lunch pitstop at Taylor's Refresher (think diner food and clientele only better, and with sweet potato fries.)
Sunday, we were kids again at the Exploratorium. (And no, these two gents weren't from there, they were part of the aforementioned clientele at Taylor's.) We took several buses all over the city. We had a nice walk from North Beach through Chinatown, and we headed home to a new-to-me twist on lasagna for dinner, which I am planning on making for myself this week.
If I learned anything in San Francisco, it was that the aerodynamics of any vehicle can be greatly increased by simply adding a helmet. So, a bit punchy from our 4 hour wait to head home, I modeled some aerodynamical goodness for the crowd around Gate 31. My mother did always say that I was special, and I'd definitely had to say that the other Southwest passengers agree. But no matter, my helmet definitely helped us make up for lost time due to the fog delays at SFO.