Laura, Ren’s friend has arrived from New Zealand on a stop over and we head out in different directions so the girls can catch up. Gilbert and I just wander and find ourselves down at the waterfront where there are heaps of delicious smelling eateries and we are spoiled for choice for breakfast. I sit down to a huge bowl of green kale amongst other greens, chopped nuts and naturally cured bacon. OMG yum! Gilbert gets a burger…I know.
The place is absolutely humming and we wander further along, covering from Pier 1 to Pier 39 and somewhere around the 17th is a science place called ‘Exploratorium’ which is a cool place to take kids. It’s here I find the earrings I want to have. They are shaped like leaves that have skeletonised, if that’s a real word. They remind me of the trip we did to Tiri Tiri Matangi where our guide told us the Mahoe tree is the only tree to do this. I am sceptical that this is in fact true, but as we live in a rural country village named after this tree and these leaves are prolific in the bush in our area, it is perfect that I find these leaves here as earrings.
I find a board that tells me that if I we here in this spot Two hundred years ago I would probably be part of a native American tribe gathering seafood from the mudflats of the bay. Well before the white man claimed it as their own.
San Francisco Bay
If I were here in this spot One hundred and sixty years ago I would probably be stepping off a ship and about to make my new home here from somewhere a long way away, as many sought refuge, fame or fortune on this land. It is indeed a place of many different cultures, as witnessed by the so many different cuisines on offer and languages spoken around me. Almost everything I can imagine….but not Cuban! Haha…I just remembered telling Andrés that we had almost every different cuisine represented in our country, a country of many different cultures, and he immediately asked “what about Cuban?” No, I shook my head. Not Cuban Andrés.
A view of Alcatraz. We won’t get there with tours booked out a month in advance.
I see lots of people using the bicycles carts and I ask one of them how much to get a ride to Market street. It’s about a 20 minute walk for us and about another 20 minute walk to our hotel. All flat but if it’s cheap enough we just might jump in. He gets out a card and tells me $20 per section. It’s one section to Market and another one to Union Square, where our hotel is close to. Then he looks me up and down and adds “per person.” So $80. Do I look stupid? I ask Gilbert. As I turn away the guy tries to say something else. “No thanks, I say. Not interested”. “I was just going to tell you how to use the train”, he says a bit indignantly. “It’s alright I smile. I know my way around. I was just interested how much and thats way too much.” I turn and leave him. You can’t tell me those people are paying $80 to do this stretch of road, as I point out a bike with two couples on it…and we are not that fat!
We chance upon the San Francisco symphony orchestra playing for free for their once a year concert and joining them this year at the finale is the San Francisco Fire Department Boat throwing out water in a display kind’ve in time to the music.
We happily meander back to the hotel and I tell Gilbert about these two very cool paintings I have seen and we duck in there so he can admire them too on our way to change for dinner. We meet Ren and Laura at the bar on the 39th floor which has a dizzying view from almost all glass surrounds, and from there to a close by Italian restaurant. The wine was great, the food was delicious and the company fun as we chatted with Laura about her upcoming wedding plans, looking after curly hair, our travels and how they have been friends since they were about ten. Such a nice evening.
This is the dessert the three pigs ordered for themselves. Haha! I just ordered dessert wine and got it free cause she forgot to bring it with dessert. No problem