September 1 - 3, 2019
It is always fun to visit "the city", as San Francisco is known around Santa Rosa and other nearby cities. Driving to San Francisco, we experienced a typical cloudless, blue sky day, with the usual brown hills of late summer.
San Francisco was completely different, as expected, with some fog and much cooler temperatures. Shirley and I had booked a room at one of our favorite motels, the Geary Parkway Motel, which is right next to several bus stops that lead to anywhere you want in San Francisco. Once we parked in the motel parking lot, we never moved the car again until we left. We have a favorite room and the hotel manager was kind enough to give it to us. Let the adventure begin!
We had arrived so early that our room was not actually ready to be occupied, so we took a walk to visit one of our favorite bookstores, the Green Apple Bookstore on Clement Street. Once there we discovered streets had been blocked off to allow a farmers' market, which was an unexpected bonanza. So many people, including lots of young people (we live in a senior community, where seeing many young people is rare), and lots and lots of flowers for sale.
Walking back to the motel we also stopped so Bob could get a couple of sesame seed balls. Upon realizing that he would have to share one of the balls with Shirley, we stopped again so Bob could get another. Then Shirley ate one entire sesame seed ball! So Bob had to do with just two, not two and a half. He survived the trauma.
Once back at the motel, we moved our stuff into the room from the car, rested for a while, then hopped on a bus to go up to Irving Street to wander around some more. Irving Street has the Marnee Thai restaurant, which is really good, but this time, after visiting a dim sum bakery, T C Pastry, where Shirley got a pot sticker
and a favorite grocery store, Bob had decided he wanted some sushi. The sushi shop we stopped at made about the best sushi Bob can remember tasting. Sadly, we do not know the name of the shop.
Then bus back to the motel for a relaxing evening. We did order some dinner from the Dong Bei Mama restaurant, right across from our motel, which we picked up and ate in our room.
That evening, for the first time in the motel, we heard a loud, noisy sound that almost drowned out the TV coming from the bathroom. It was very, very loud. Flushing the toilet did no good. So we went down to the office and eventually the problem got completely solved that evening. It turned out there was a problem with the toilet in the next room over and the solution was to flush that toilet. Shirley later spoke with the woman renting that room who said she had been kept up most of the previous night before discovering the solution to the problem. The next day the motel manager saw us, apologized, and said he had fixed the toilet. We never were bothered again.
Today was the day for the embarcadero, Fisherman's Wharf, pier 39 and more. The crowds actually became a bit overwhelming, making it difficult to see and get into stores for instance. Flowers were in abundance.
It is fun to see so many sea lions and seagulls with so many tourists watching them (here is a video, but unfortunately the wind drowns out the barking of the sea lions). We also saw a juggler (see video) who was quite entertaining as he amused both kids and parents. One of the best parts of his act was when he brought up a young girl from the audience, put her in a large coat (with his hands, not hers, actually in the sleeves) and showed how well she was able to juggle.
One gets a clear view of the former prison island of Alcatraz.
There was also a one man band, literally, who simultaneously played drums, guitars, horn. He was frustrated a bit by another performer down the way who turned up the volume so loud on his act that it was difficult to hear the one man band play.
Our last day in San Francisco for this visit. We decided to simply get up, load the car, and head home. As foggy as it was in San Francisco, it was completely clear with blue skies once again in Marin and Sonoma counties. We were a bit amazed with how much traffic was going into San Francisco and coming out with us from San Francisco.
Bob Phillips [phillips bob 27 at yahoo dot com - no spaces]
Santa Rosa, CA