So on Tuesday we arrived into San Francisco, courtesy of my brother Peter and on the way to our hotel, he drove us down Lombard Street (wibbly wobbly steep street) and across the Golden Gate Bridge. It was a fantastic introductory cruise around this fantastic city and got us excited about our three day stopover. And it turns out there are a LOT of Kiwis in San Fran and we’ve somehow managed to bump into all of them – in our hotel, at the local pub, in elevators, at shops and on public transport.
The following morning we began our time as tourists and jumped on a bus which took us around all the major sights of the city for cheap! We visited the Golden Gate Bridge once more and this time drove across on an open-top double decker. It was very windy and pretty bloody cold in the fog but worth it for the photos!
Day 1 we also spent half the day in the Castro – a place we have always talked about visiting. We learnt about some history at the GLBT museum and visited Harvey Milk’s old camera shop (now the Human Rights Campaign Shop) where we found a great new jumper for Chels to spread the yay gay! After plenty of rainbow spotting and checking out the neighbourhood, we were back on the tram to explore more of the central city.
We were fortunate enough to get an awesome tour guide driver, David, who gave great commentary as he took us around the city on the bus.
Our first full day in San Fran was capped off with dinner and a show. Chelsea picked a place next door to tthe theatre for us to eat dinner which turned out to be one of the most expensive places in the city!! We didn’t realise until we were seated so we ended up just ordering a drink and an appetiser each. Turns out they were huge anyway so plenty for us before catching the show and our lovely waitress made up for the extortionist prices.
The show was the local San Francisco Playhouse’s production of Into The Woods. We were gifted tickets from my brother Peter and his wife Kim for our wedding. Thanks so much guys – we had such a fantastic time at our first show in America and it was made even better by the fact that it was our first Sondheim show too!
Today we continued our carousel world tour – finding #2 and #3 on this trip! The first was at the Fisherman’s Wharf at Pier 39 [the top strip of photos] – a two-storey carousel with gold tokens and the second was indoors at Golden Gate Park where we met a cute giraffe and the operator let us ride for ages because we were the only customers.
Pier 45 held one of Chelsea’s planned tourist outings for us – the Musee Mecanique. This incredible place is an arcade (my kind of place!) and all of the machines – 300 of them – are from the 1920s and 30s and all working for a quarter. We had so much fun playing all of the games and we even had our fortune told by no less than three grandmothers and four wizard fortune tellers. We had so much fun reading our fortunes that we even got one from a mechanical Houdini at a magic shop!
Big couple of days! We have one day left in SF before we head back to the Hanaray clan in San Jose for the weekend.