Saturday, March 12, 2022

California 2022 - San Francisco Part I

We flew to San Francisco on Thursday February 24th. We dropped the dogs off at Rita’s  (our dog sitter) in the morning, and then took an Uber to the airport. Their care has gotten so complicated as they’ve aged! I had to write out the instructions for their food and medications and she was a little intimidated. But it’s like anything, you do it for a couple days and then it becomes second nature.

We got to the airport pretty early. We really liked our Uber driver. He was smart and interesting and we enjoyed talking to him. The flight was long but uneventful. I spent most of the time watching episodes of Call the Midwife and reading my New Yorkers. I’m impatiently waiting for the next set of instructions to drop online for the afghan I’m making but it hasn’t happened yet.

Dan picked us up at the airport in San Francisco. It’s sunny, but chilly for the next few days, 40’s and 50’s. That first night it was windy too. 

We got to see their new apartment. It’s so pretty and a great design with a lot of nice touches. The fridge is large and built in so it looks like just another cabinet. It has a big island and the living room is roomy, with floor to ceiling windows on two sides.  They have automated shades that startle me every time they go up or down. The guest room is small but they are going to get it redesigned so that the closet is smaller and then it will have more space. It’s in a new building, on the 19th floor, with beautiful views. The only thing is, the building kind of pops and creaks now and then, which is kind of unsettling. It doesn’t sway at least! They are on the 19th floor.

We walked over to the ferry building for a coffee at Blue Bottle. Later we drove over to the Mission for dinner at a Mexican restaurant. It was very good, but Dan accidentally chose a vegan restaurant! Vegan Mexican, a new concept, at least to us. We didn’t care, it was delicious.

You have to show proof of vaccination to eat in restaurants in San Francisco. I used the Docket app on my phone and it worked great. It’s only available for some states. I’m glad MN has implemented it, it’s very handy.

Friday February 25th.

I wake up early, my body is still on Central Time. No matter, I hadn’t run in 2 days so I decided to go ahead and do my 6 miler today. I wore my normal running outfit for 40 degree weather, but added a running jacket because it was in the low 40’s to start, and windy. The sun was just coming up over the Bay Bridge. I ran to the big hill just past Fisherman’s Wharf, where you can first see the Golden Gate bridge and then turned around and came back. I took my jacket off on the way back.

We decided to do part of the cross city hiking trail today. It was lots of fun! We did Section 2, that started at the Glen Park Bart Station and ended at the Forest Hills Muni station. It went about 3 miles, going from one green space hiking trail to the next, skirting Twin Peaks, with nice views and woodland trails.

We brought Rossi with us. She had never been on Bart before and she was pretty alarmed by the experience. She loved the hike, however. She’s only a year old and has lots of energy, but Dan said it was the longest hike she has been on, so far.

We found out that fares for seniors on Bart and the muni are super cheap, so Lee and I both got Clipper cards (free for seniors) and put $10 on each one. That was way more than we needed but we’ll leave them for Dan and Kelsey to use for their guests, or we can use them the next time we’re in town.

Dan downloaded the map and I had the written instructions which were very clear and easy to follow. It’s the kind of thing I love, like deciphering a puzzle while walking.

When we got to Forest Hills we were all hungry. There was a highly recommended burger place right there so we sat outside in the sunshine and ate hamburgers, and then rode the muni back to the Embarcadero.

We were going to dinner that night with Kelsey’s parents and I realized that my plan to wear a skirt and sandals was highly impractical in 40 degree weather, so I stopped at a Walgreens on the way back to the apartment and got myself some black tights to wear with the skirt. I always seem to have trouble planning for the weather in California!

For dinner we went to a Peruvian restaurant overlooking the bay called La Mar. Turns out Peruvian food is highly influenced by Japan and Mexico, so it was their take on nigiri, ceviche, empanadas and other delicious stuff. Dan and Kelsey ordered us lots of small plates and everything was great. I especially liked their empanadas, made with mushrooms, corn, steak or chicken.

We went back to the apartment after and sat around and talked for awhile. By the time we went to bed it was long after 10 pm. I was really tired and slept right through to 4 am, and then dozed until 5:45.

Saturday February 26

I was tired after running and hiking and walking around a lot yesterday. I did some PT exercises in the morning but that was it. We went to the farmer’s market at the ferry building for breakfast. I got empanada’s (the one's last night were so good!) and everyone else went to the Mexican place. The empanadas were yummy but then I kind of wished I had gotten the Mexican breakfasts instead. 

We went back to the apartment to chill for awhile and listen to the news. It’s all about Ukraine, so very sad. Kelsey went to get the first fitting for her wedding dress. I've seen a picture now. So pretty! I’m starting to get excited. Lee, Dan and I went to get oysters for a late lunch. 

That evening we went to Belota, the Spanish place we tried to go to last year when we didn’t want to sit inside. It was so delicious! We got different tapas and a half chicken, half pork paella. My favorite tapa was the Brussels sprouts that were crunchy and very flavorful. Lee liked the lamb meatballs with lentils best. We also got potatoes, anchovies, and accidentally got a beet dish we didn’t order but since we didn’t have to pay for it nbd.

Sunday February 27

I ran 4 miles in the morning. It was warmer, and very sunny. Then we went to Hong Kong Lounge for dim sum. It was right at 10 when they opened and there was no line, which seemed strange, but it was still as great as always so who knows. By the time we left there was a line. Maybe it was just early for a Sunday.

In the afternoon we went to an exhibit at the Asian Art Museum. It was an interactive art/video/3D exhibit by a group from Tokyo called teamlab. The exhibit was titled Continuity. We got there a little early so first we went into an interactive area where you could decorate an outline of a fish any way you desired. Then they scanned it and it was entered into the exhibit. The fish first "swam" around in the room where they were decorated and then later some of them would appear in the main exhibit. This sounds strange but it was very neat. I decorated a squid with one of my abstract doodle designs. It came out looking like one of Picasso’s ladies, totally by accident!.

Then we entered the exhibit. Beautiful colorful birds, flowers, and fish move on the walls  and floors. You could interact with it. The schools of fish would divide when they encountered you. It you touched a flower the petals might fall, or a butterfly appear.

There was one room that was vertigo inducing. You had to wait in line to get into the room, and then sit down to watch it. It was hard to describe except I kept thinking of LSD experiences in my past, so you get the picture! 

Lee made chicken a La Becca for dinner. Why is this dish called by this name? I thought you'd never ask. When Sarah was very small her friend Becca and her sister Stephanie came to spend the night. Lee made this chicken dish for dinner. Chicken roasted in a tomato sauce and served with lots of french bread to soak of the gravy. When Becca got home she asked her mom and dad, "Why don't YOU ever make something this good?!" And so the name. And yes, it was delicious.

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