De Dos Dias

August 27, 2012 at 9:00 am (A Little Fun, Fun Photos, Time Off Together) (, , , , , , , , , , , )

We first set out for wine country.  We just wanted some wine for the apartment so we just wanted to pop in and out of a couple of places.  One red for Josh, one white for me.  We also ended up with a really excellent Port which we brought back with us.

When Stacey got off work she took us to her favorite Indian place which happened to be in San Rafael.  They have a delicious all you can eat buffet for lunch.  I particularly loved the naan and tikka masala.  I wanted to eat more but I had no room left!

When we were done eating we headed out to the city.  I had wanted to take a picture similar to one we had done on our previous trip to San Francisco.   So we went to the Painted Ladies in Alamo Square.

Do you see any difference?

Maybe just a little.

It was a beautifully sunny 83 degrees when we left San Rafael, which is a mere 15 minutes from the bridge.  As we approached SF we watched (and felt!) the temperature drop.  On the bridge it was 56!.  Cold and blustery in SF!

Josh let Stacey use his ultra light backpacking jacket.  She needed four hands to fight the wind!

We could have flown her like a kite!

Josh looks like he is enjoying a warm summery day.

Josh needed help getting his jacket back on.  Like  a kite I tell you.

What a stud!

A gratuitous VW van shot for Andy.  There were PLENTY of these around!

Stacey took us to this lovely park that was plopped right down in the middle of the city.  In Buena Vista you almost forget you are in a city as you climb the steep hills, pick wild blackberries, and gaze up at the eucalyptus trees (not pictured, I know).  There is such a variety of flora in this park.

This is one of the lookout points in the park.  They say there is this big bridge and an ocean out there, but honestly I’m not sure they know what they are talking about.

The one place I REALLY wanted to try in the city was Humphry Slocombe.  Just a little before our trip I happened to pick up an ice cream recipe book from the library and guess where the shop was ?!  They had some really off the wall flavors that I wanted to try.

I could not make up my mind because what tasted best to me was just the ordinary strawberry ancho chili chocolate.  I really wanted something different so I chose pluot cardamom something or other.

Josh and Stacey both got the secret breakfast, which apparently is one of their best sellers.  It involves corn flakes and whiskey.  It really was tasty!

The Mission District reminds me a little of Pilsen, but a bit more hard core or edgy.

I really wish I would have taken pictures of some of the murals.  This was one of those places I really didn’t want to stick out like a tourist.  The picture above was taken at my hip.  😀

Once we were thoroughly chilled with our ice cream (did I mention it was 56 degrees?!) we, at least Stacey and I had to get our coffee fix at Philz.

I love this picture!  It seems like it should be in a newspaper article about Philz.  🙂

They brew your coffee up for you right there!  Fresh!  And you can mix beans, too.  Since it was evening but I knew we would be having a very late dinner and a late return I mixed decaf Ethiopian with the regular Silken Splendor.  It was quite good!  And a fun place to hang out, too.

It was finally time for dinner so Stacey took us to the place she volunteers.  Old Skool Cafe is a not for profit that gets at risk kids off the streets and trains them for jobs.  The cafe is not only a place to train the kids, but it is where they can be employed which offers them a legitimate place of employment and good reference for their resume.  I encourage you to click the link to their website and read about them.  And it is not your typical not for profit that just does what they do and expects pity and hand outs.  They really do what they do well.  The food is excellent and they offer live entertainment.  Yelp is proof that the general public really enjoys the food.

The jazzy/clubby music was superb.

And there was salsa dancing when the musicians cleared out.

We were the last customers out.

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Arrival

August 22, 2012 at 8:49 pm (A Little Fun, Time Off Together) (, , , , )

Up bright and early at 3:30am.  We actually got to the airport later than we had hoped so Josh dropped me off so I could drop off our luggage and he could park in remote parking (later to find it was the wrong lot, $129 later.  ouch!).  We were already checked in so we just had to hope in the line to get through security.

Even though they asked who was flying Virgin to SF and they said we would be ok where we were in line, we were still almost late for our flight.  The lady at the desk said, “You didn’t hear my page?”.  I’m thinking, first of all how can you expect to understand ANY of these pages.  Secondly we were going through security and there is still 10 minutes to departure.  Why is the door already closed?

On the plane someone was sitting in one of our seats.  When we claimed the seat she looked a little upset and said, “Well, do you want to sit there?” and pointed to two seats across the isle.  Being a little frazzled I said fine.  When I sat I realized I had just given up my window seat.  😦  During the flight I couldn’t not help looking over at the girls who sat with the empty seat between them yacking it up, buying movies, ordering food, and thinking that these girls are spoiled.

All in all we made it to SFO and had time to kill before Stacey picked us up after work.

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Little did we know that we would somehow bring fog with us that would not rise until just after our flight left for Chicago.  Our only view of the GGB was on our arrival.

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Stacey took us to her stomping grounds and we got to see where she lives, view and all!

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She took us to pick up our car (Josh’s mustang!) and we picked up some lunch at the Bay Cafe.  Cute place but nothing fancy.

Our home for the week was an apartment in a house in San Rafael.  It was a really beautiful apartment.  The owner’s had thought of every little detail, right down to the home baked cookies and little package of Peet’s coffee.  Mmm!  It was very much our style.

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After we got a little settled Stacey took us to one of her spots off Muir Beach.  We had to walk through Slide Ranch to get there.  Such a beautiful place and probably one of my favorite views on the coast.

The drive was on what I think MUST be the most wind-y, curvy part of HWY 1.  The map says it will take 11 minutes to get there, but that is a lie.  It is more like one hour!

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I LOVED the eucalyptus!!!!

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Unfortunately we had to rush back because the parking lot was going to close at 6pm so we could only spend about 3 minutes looking for starfish.

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There was a lookout point at the parking lot.

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WINDY!!

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Railcats

August 9, 2012 at 12:21 am (A Little Fun, Fun Photos, Time Off Together) (, , , , , )

Summer is nearing an end and we have been wanting to take Stevie to a Railcats game.  So we did.

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International Friends

August 5, 2012 at 8:05 pm (Uncategorized)

It’s been a year since my last post.  Should I even keep this up?  I don’t feel like my life is interesting enough to post about anymore or I am just so busy I don’t have time to log onto ANOTHER website and give updates.

It has been 5 years almost to the day since we did this and we are approaching the day when we will say good bye to our friends from Brazil.  We met Eduardo and Natalia at our small group and we knew right away that we wanted to be friends with them.  I think we already felt a common bond because we know what it is like to be an expat.

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With so many different things going on we really were not able to get together with them as often as we would have liked and I know September will be here too soon.

These friends of ours are city folk through and through and had never cooked over a fire.  Unfortunately we had a monsoon (practically) sweep through just before they were supposed to be here and I was all like “Oh, no!  What are we going to do?!”  Before the storm came Josh got the fire nice and hot so it would still be burning after it passed.  And it did.  We kept the fire TOO hot, though, and managed to burn about half a dozen pudgy pies.  I felt so bad for this first experience of theirs.

And with the rains brought the bugs.  And Natalia had a bug experience that I am sure she hopes she can forget.  🙂

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Life has had so many twists and turns and so many hellos and goodbyes.  We are glad our paths have crossed

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