We reached on a Thursday evening from Chicago and we were taken by bus to the city from Emeryville. As I said my goodbyes to a new friend I met on the train, I knew that I would probably never meet him ever again. Maybe he is reading this and I feel stupid not to have kept in touch. But I did not know how. He was a friend I made for two days and that was it.
The first thing you do when you arrive in this city is to finally pull out the jacket that you stashed somewhere and did not have to use it till then (I went to the US in summer). Someone rightly said this about San Francisco and I agree wholeheartedly.
“The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco.”
Since I desperately wanted to not smell anymore, I took an Uber to my AirBnb accommodation. And halfway across the World, I found an Indian-origin American from Bangalore who was my Uber driver. Talk about coincidences.
After a quick hot shower, I immediately decided to explore a bit of my locality on foot. I was also famished from eating train food for two days and even though it was not too bad, you cannot have it for more than 2 days. By the time dinner was done, I was too tired and decided to head back to my room. I also had a hectic schedule planned for the next day.
Soon our bus was on the way to Yosemite. What can I tell you about Yosemite? It is so beautiful and you are left awestruck at the beauty of nature. The drive up there is heavenly and you can find more details here. But all I can say is this. Please do not miss Yosemite. I know that for many Indians, it is not as popular as the Niagara Falls. But the falls pale in comparison to the beauty of the Yosemite.
My friends had to leave by then and I had to start my shopping. I bought only a few souvenirs from there since it can be quite expensive buying from there. I spent almost another hour to take a Cable Car ride since it is supposedly part of the quintessential San Francisco experience. It is fun, but don’t expect too much out of the experience.
I took a cab back to a Safeway close to my house. Since San Francisco was my last stop, I had to buy chocolates and gifts for family and friends back in India. Yes, I am a wanderful shopper according to Ami.
Next day I took a morning train to Mountain View which is around 70 mins by train from San Francisco. Since most of my friends work in Silicon Valley, they stay all around the Bay Area. My friends picked me and soon we were on our way to Shoreline Park after brunch. This is a nice park and we spent hours chatting away about our college days. The setting was just perfect for a reunion after so many years.
Soon it was time to say goodbye to my friends from college. Another friend came and picked me up. He took me around Stanford and I finished the last bit of my shopping at the mall there. Soon we were on our way back to San Francisco after a day well spent with friends.
On the way back, we took parts of the 49-mile scenic route. We even stopped at the Sutro baths and somewhere along the Twin Peaks for a gorgeous sunset. View of the city is just magnificent from up there. It was after 10 by the time I got home that day.
Next day was my last day in the US. I had a 5 PM flight which meant that I had to get out of the house by 12. I had so much to do. I had to finish packing which I had left until the last minute to do as usual. But I did not want to do anything. My last day in the USA and all I wanted to do was nothing. We all do know the ‘Art of Doing Nothing’ (Guess the movie)). I had such a hectic schedule the entire time I was there. I was burned out and a part of me wanted to get back home to my family. But I knew I wanted to stay because I did not want to come back to my reality. It was such a memorable trip and San Francisco was just an icing on the cake.
|San Francisco: The Golden Gate City|