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San Francisco Trip Day 2, Minnesota vs Cal

San Francisco Trip Day 1

It’s kind of weird to be writing this blog post(s) two weeks after getting home but stuff happens.

   

We started early the first morning by driving our friend Dan to work in San Francisco. Jason drove as he always does. He wishes I would be a little more obsessive compulsive like he is and I wish he would pull that rod out of his back side and relax a little bit.

    

But we are the best of friends although he learned a new reason to be annoyed with me. I am the navigator when he needs it. Usually he has it already figured out, where to go and what order but occasionally he needs some assistance. The thing is, I turn the map every time a turn is made. That way I can visualize where we are going.

   

Jason however does things by a compass and he wants the map held in place. He knows he needs to head, say, NE and that’s what he does. Mean while I am turning the map on him.

   

Each to his own.

   

We had a map and some sights marked to see and started driving. We also had the camera with. This being my first trip to the Bay Area I was in full tourist mode.

   

We went to Fisherman’s Wharf. It was a dreary morning. Damp, cold, and foggy but it would burn off by the afternoon right? Right… Not

   

After getting some breakfast at Johnny Rockets (I swear that was the best breakfast of my life. Maybe not eating much if at all the previous day played a part in it) We walked to Pier 39 and got the following pictures of Alcatraz and the Sea Lions:

   

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Pier_39_sea_lions_2Pier_39_sea_lions_1_1Pier_39_sea_lions_5_1   

   

   

   

   

Oh, and I should not forget about this street performer who paints himself a metallic silver. He does some routines to R&B music and then some “frozen” or statue like poses:

   

Pier_39_silver_man_2   

   

   

   

   

We checked out the shops and stopped in at Ghirardelli Square. We found Chocolate Heaven. As we stepped towards the entrance there was a certain spot when the aroma of the store took over. Oh my, there was a lot to choose from. I was able to resist the temptation, not sure why. Jason bought a square of raspberry chocolate fudge. Heaven indeed.

   

Took a quick stroll over to Pier 45 and saw two World War II era ships. The submarine U.S.S. Pampanito and the liberty ship SS Jeremiah O’Brien, the last ship floating from the D-Day invasion of Normandy:

   

Pier_45_ss_jeremiah_obrien_ww_ii_liberty   

   

   

   

 

One of my must sees was Lombard Street (also known as the Crooked Street). We first drove down it and then looped around a few blocks to get back to the top.

   

It was during this time that my senses were on over load. The views, ocean, and vertical features were amazing. Like I said, this was my first trip to San Francisco. Minneapolis and the Upper Midwest are fairly flat so this was all brand new to me. I was wondering how much speed could a person get on roller blades or what if a moving truck let loose:

 

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If_a_truck_broke_loose   

   

   

   

   

Jason was wondering how often a brake job is needed or a parking brake would need adjustment. I was wondering about driving a stick. Or what if the streets were iced over. Always thinking like a Minnesotan.

   

So we parked and started walking. We found this driveway, which was common in the area. Nice pics of Jason thinking about it and then laughing out loud:

     

Do_you_think_cars_have_suspension_proble_1How_do_you_pull_in_the_driveway_1View_from_the_garage_door_to_the_street_1   

   

   

   

   

The view down from Lombard Street was very cool:

   

Lombard_ave_driving_downLombard_looking_downLombard_looking_out

   

   

   

   

   

We then walked down and saw this plaque and tree that has been carved on a few hundred times:

   

Lombard_crooked_street_plaqueLombard_tree_carving

   

   

   

   

   

The view from the bottom looking up was very cool too as I am a big fan of gardens:

   

Lombard_looking_upLombard_looking_up_2

   

   

   

   

   

We then headed to the Golden Gate Bridge, another must see on my list. Even with the foggy day it was very cool to see. We did start walking out on it but because of perspective we did not realize how far we had walked out (more like how far we had to walk back and in time to get back to the parking meter) and how much further we had to go:

   

Golden_gate_bridgeGolden_gate_bridge_jasonGolden_gate_bridge_walking_out_on_itGolden_gate_bridge_view_of_san_franciscoGolden_gate_bridge_looking_down

   

   

   

   

   

   

Golden_gate_bridge_paul

   

   

   

   

   

   

   

   

   

From there along the 49 Mile Scenic Drive:

   

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To Baker Beach where for the first time I touched the Pacific Ocean. I also like the warning sign (in 4 languages), the dude fishing, and my future home:

   

Baker_beachBaker_beach_paulBaker_beach_warning_signBaker_beach_whatcha_catchingBaker_beach_sweet_views_of_the_ocean

   

   

   

   

   

To Ocean Beach:

   

Ocean_beach_1Ocean_beach_3Ocean_beach_paul_getting_feet_wetOcean_beach_seagulls

   

   

   

   

   

And the Japanese Tea Garden in Golden Gate Park. This area reminded me a lot like our areas along the Mississippi River and Minnehaha Falls area. It was very quiet and peaceful. Although I am not sure how the others visiting the garden felt about Jason and I. We were walking around fast and talking kind of loud. Not exactly Zen like but hey, we had a schedule to keep:

   

Japanese_tea_garden_entranceJapanese_tea_garden_2Japanese_tea_garden_3Japanese_tea_garden_pagoda

Japanese_tea_garden_water_fall_2Japanese_tea_garden_yogi_berra_fork_in_tJapanese_tea_garden_zen_gardenJapanese_tea_garden_paul_and_buddha_stir

   

   

   

   

   

While Jason was taking his time in the gift shop (his excuse was he is married with three kids to shop for, whatever) I sat down on this bench and this bird hopped up there with me. I sat and watched him for a while. It sat there looking up at me. I slowly walked from the bench and it hopped off still looking at me.

   

I took a picture of my new friend:

   

Japanese_tea_garden_bird

   

   

   

   

   

We started heading back to pick up Dan from work and stopped at Twin Peaks. We did not exactly find the street we were looking for (Jason said it was not his fault) but were high enough for a couple of pictures:

   

View_from_twin_peaks_area_2View_from_twin_peaks_area_4

   

   

   

   

   

After getting Dan from work we headed back to his home and for me a much needed nap. We were able to do most of the sights we wanted to see in one day over six hours.

   

That night we headed back in to the city to meet some of Dan’s friends and a couple of drinks. Here is myself, Jason, and Dan:

   

Deke_brothers_having_a_drink

   

   

   

   

   

And so ended the first day…

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