Saturday, January 3, 2015

San Francisco 2004

On July fourth 2004 we left our RV in Redwood City and drove into San Francisco to pick up our son, AJ. We drove around to see a few of the sights in town, including Telegraph Hill. Telegraph Hill is actually a neighborhood surrounding the hill itself. Back before telephones were available, there was a semaphore system on Telegraph Hill to let the people in the city know what kind of ships entered the Golden Gate. This was early warning for commodities traders to know what cargo was coming into port, so they could adjust prices. It was like an early version of the stock market before ticker tape and computers.

It was a beautiful day, as most of them seem to be in San Francisco, so we drove south through Daly City, then along the Pacific Coast Highway through Pacifica checking out the beaches. There was a lot of wind and we enjoyed watching the waves crash into the rocks along the shoreline. Next, we took California 92 east out of Half Moon Bay and went over to California 82, then south to the Stanford and Palo Alto areas. We were all hungry, so we had lunch at a Marie Calendars restaurant in Palo Alto. Marie Calendars has never been one of my favorites, but Kathi and AJ like to eat there. After lunch we took AJ home and returned to the RV for the evening. After dark they had fireworks over the South San Francisco Bay that we could see through the front windshield of our motorhome. The fireworks display went on for so long, we got bored and went to bed before it was over.

Baskets of flowers were plentiful along the streets in downtown San Francisco.

Enjoying the Pacific Ocean.

A statue of Christopher Columbus on Telegraph Hill

Kathi in front of the Valley of the Moon vineyards tasting room

Another vineyard visitor center

Lovely grape vines

Another vineyard and their visitor center.

A small empty beach area

Another view from Telegraph Hill

The Carneros Creek visitor center

We stayed home for the next couple of days doing a little housework and laundry. On July seventh, we went back into the city to get AJ for a drive north across the Golden Gate Bridge. This is a toll bridge and I never went across when it was not crowded. They have movable lane dividers so they can have more lanes coming into the city in the morning and more lanes leaving the city in the afternoon. The bridge is painted international orange, which looks like a rust color to me. They never stop painting it. The painters start at one side and paint their way to the other side, cross back over and start painting again. Talk about job security.

After we crossed the bridge we went up a hill toward the Golden Gate Recreation area. We found a pull out and got out to take some pictures of the Golden Gate Bridge from an elevated position. We only went up a couple of hundred feet and the temperature dropped about twenty degrees. It was way too cold to take many pictures. We continued our drive north through Sausalito, Marin City and on into the Sonoma and Napa areas. We loved seeing the vineyards, especially the ones on a hillside. I think it was too early for harvesting grapes, but it was perfect viewing weather. After viewing many, many vineyards, we drove west to Petaluma where we stopped for lunch. The conversation was great – Kathi and I really enjoyed spending a few days with AJ.

The next day we drove back into the city and while I worked on AJ's computer, AJ acted as a tour guide for Kathi. They took a bus to the Macy’s to do a little shopping. AJ was used to public transportation, since he does not drive. The experience was new to Kathi, but I think she enjoyed it. They were gone for several hours and I was through reloading software on AJ’s computer before they returned. It was a great visit, but it was getting close to time for us to move along.

Next stop: the Alfa factory for some repair work.

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