Phil and I had a fantastic weekend in the city. We arrived by BART Friday afternoon before Doug and Vanessa (Phil's brother and our future sister-in-law). I was instantly enamored with the hustle and bustle of the city and was thrilled to be away from our life in suburbia. Phil was starving (as usual) so we squeezed into a little cafe with our giant suitcase and got a bite to eat, then meandered around some shops until we could drop off our luggage in our hotel room.
After Doug and Vanessa arrived, we visited H&M, then headed toward North Beach. We decided to walk all the way so we could pass through the gates of Chinatown.
Phil and I were extremely proud of each other for remembering to get pictures of ourselves, which we seldom do. We popped into a few shops, window shopped, and observed people enjoying the tea tasting rooms.
We walked through St. Mary's Square, which is where Phil snapped this really cool picture of Sun Yat-Sen. He also took the above picture of the clock to satisfy Ryan's obsession.
Doug and Vanessa were kind enough to pose for this picture.
Our feet were getting pretty tired, and mine were very blistered from an earlier shoe debacle, but it was only about three more blocks until North Beach, so we pressed on.
Seeing Jack Kerouac's name embedded in the cement was our first notion that we had arrived. When I stopped and looked around at the buildings to get my bearings straight, I noticed that I was standing next to City Light's book store and the Vesuvio, both infamous land marks of the beatnik movement.
We perused the books for quite sometime, then decided that it was time to get some dinner. Our friends, Chris and Amanda, were coincidentally in the city for a teaching conference and were able to meet up with us.
We went to one of our favorite North Beach haunts; Pinocchio's. We had an unfortunately long wait, which provided us with great conversation and lots of laughs. Our food and company couldn't have been better.
One of my favorite brunch places in the city is Crepes on Cole, which is just up the hill from Haight Ashbury in the Cole Valley neighborhood (a neighborhood where I have often said, "If I ever moved to the city, this is where I would live"). We had a wonderful breakfast, then meandered down the hill to Amoeba records. We indulged our collective love of music for quite a while, then wandered down Haight until we reached Buena Vista Park. We caught a MUNI and headed back to Market.
We did a little more shopping, then went back to our hotel to rest up. That evening, we caught an F Line MUNI down to Fisherman's Wharf where we visited the Musee Mecanique, which previously was located at the Cliff House.
We ate a great dinner at Alioto's and enjoyed our view of the bay.
Notice Doug holding his "Murse" (man+purse). Really, it was Vanessa's.
This laughing lady was one of the oddities at the Musee Mecanique.
After dinner, we walked down to Ghirardelli square and partook of some complimentary chocolate. Our final stop of the day was at the top of the Hyatt in Union Square for a night cap.
Day 3The next morning, we MUNI-ed to my most favorite coffee house ever: Caffe Greco. I was concerned that Caffe Greco would only serve pastries for breakfast, which would never work for my hypo-glycemic husband. Phil called ahead to see what they had. An obvioulsly Italian man answered the phone and told Phil, "We have whatever you need. You come down and find a seat. We very busy."
Right before Phil was able to annihilate everyone in the restaurant with his hateful, hunger-filled stares, a steaming plate containing a bagel slathered with cream cheese, ham, tomato, and egg, was set before him and saved us all from certain death.
After Phil silently consumed everything on his plate and the twinkle returned to his eyes, he was able to snap the above picture of the Hotel Boheme where we stayed on our honeymoon almost five years ago. Our last tourist attraction was Lombard street. We made the arduous trek up the hill, where I was able to snap this picture of Coit Tower.
Our weekend was a refreshing trip away from the hum-drum monotony of everyday life and was a great meeting spot to spend time with the soon to be Mr. and Mrs. Doug Ogden.