[From Us] San Francisco
After a long day of flying, we got into the city around 1am. All of it's treasures were hidden under the darkness of the night, and we had no idea what we were up against. We checked into the hotel, where we were upgraded to the 23rd floor, and fell into bed. I think we were both asleep before we were even horizontal. With the time change and effects of jet lag, our eyes opened before the sun crept over the rolling hills. We sat and talked about what we wanted to do, what we wanted to see and where we wanted to go. Then as the sun began to show, we could start seeing the outlines of the city. We left the hotel, took a left on Van Ness, which we were sure was north and began walking. We like to walk everywhere because it saves money and you get to understand where you are on a larger scale. We soon figured out that our direction was wrong and we made a 180 degree turn in a fashion that didn't show the entire city we were tourists. On our walk back we grabbed a coffee at Peet's coffee. Seems to be a popular chain out here, where we fueled up on straight sugar and carbs, something we would end up needing at the end of the day. We left the coffee shop, and decided to walk down to Fisherman's Wharf and Pier 39, only a mere 8 mile walk for the day. As we approached the water, we heard cheering, clapping, and music. We quickly made our way to the comotion to find the Alcatraz Invitational. This is a swimming race where racers swim from Alcatraz island to shore. The reason Alcatraz was placed on the island was to keep inmates from escaping and swimming to shore. The strong currents and shark infested waters that once deterred people from jumping into the water, was now an annual race, where competitors of varying sizes, shapes, skins (no wet suit) or suits (wet suit) competed for the fastest time. But for us as spectators, was a race for their lives.
We left that area and walked around Fisherman's Wharf, a place that if you weed through the typical tourist souvenirs, you can find some great things. Here we found the SS Jeremiah O'Brien. The last ship of it's kind that stormed the beaches at Normandy, where the engine room was used in the filming of the block buster Titanic. Walking next to the ship left a feeling of pride in our country as well as the people that built it. This ship was built during the war by Women, African Americans, and anyone else that was able bodied at the time. This was built in unified fashion, something that we wished could happen not only at a time of war. With jet lag setting in and 8 miles under our feet, we finished our night as close to the hotel as we could. Being our anniversary, we mustered up the remaining energy to have a romantic steak dinner. Not even a block away, we found a Ruth Chris's Steakhouse to seal the night.
Our last thing we had to do before the next chapter of this adventure was hang off the side of a cable car. Many movies and TV shows show their characters hanging off the side, so naturally we had to do the same. We bought two $12 tickets on an app, because why not, and waited in line for our chance. It took about 15 minutes and we were on car 26. We jumped on the right side, because we read that bit had the best views, and as the cable car took off, we waited to be yelled at for not being seated. Hanging off the side of the car, something that would not be allowed as children, brought so much joy as an adult. We traversed the iconic slopes of the city streets as the cable car operator pulled levers and rang bells.
So many things were going on in this city where we could have easily stayed for the entire week. It was the start if fleet week, where giant Naval ships could be seen entering the bay. There was also the Folsom Street Fair, where many people could be seen walking the street, in interesting outfits, not afraid to show who they are. This is an accepting city, full of a pallet of different individuals and we are happy to have been a part of it.
Our only wish is that help comes to all of the homeless people. There is so much love in this city, I hope there can be a way to help in anyway possible.