Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Golden Gate and Hibachi

We walked around town with Elliot trying to find any place open for lunch. We stumbled upon a Chinese restaurant, and without saying too much, it was the sketchiest place we've been to so far. After our psychologically induced stomach aches passed, we visited the Golden Gate Bridge.

Because we had dinner plans with Joe's friends and coworkers, we didn't have time to sit in the southbound traffic to come back across. Still, the view was beautiful. We walked around Golden Gate Park for a little bit and then headed to Benihana's in Japan Town. The ten of us enjoyed the entertaining chefs and the delicious food they prepared for us. It definitely made up for our awful lunch! :)

Thanks for reading,
Joe and Sophia

Monday, May 30, 2011

Silicon Valley

Yesterday, we traveled south along the bay to visit Sophia's cousin, Nima, in Palo Alto. Nima and her wonderful fiancé, Dev, live very close to Stanford and took us to a beautiful restaurant nearby. Our meals were massive, but we successfully finished ours. :) It was great seeing Nima after such a long time.

We then drove through the Stanford campus and headed further south to Mountain View. We toured the entire Googleplex, raced Google bikes around the campus, enjoyed homegrown fruit and pure sugarcane ginger ale.

Around dinner time, we found our way to Santa Clara for an evening at the Mohr's home. Fortunately, their son Jack was also home from Georgetown. Tom cooked a delicious meal and Pageen baked an incredible dessert. We shared stories of summer plans, family history and grandpa Tredwell. It was great reflecting on what a wonderful man grandpa Tredwell is.

We're really glad we have family so close. :)

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Fisherman's Wharf, Pier 39 and Ghirardelli Square

It seems like it''s drizzling almost every morning, but around noon, the weather clears up. We walked to the Fisherman's Wharf, on northern tip of the peninsula. When we weren't avoiding/swatting away seagulls, we wandered around the pier. The views of Alcatraz, the Golden Gate Bridge and downtown were stunning.

We headed back to meet up with Elliot for lunch at this cute place on the Square, but the line wrapped around the building. Instead, we had a nice brunch at a cafe down the street, facing the park. It started to rain again, but we really wanted to see more of the piers.

We went to Ghirardelli Square first, sampled chocolate, and watched the sun reappear. The gray skies on one side of the city coupled with the beaming sun was a gorgeous sight. Elliot met up with us to tour Pier 39, also on the northern end of The Embarcadero. This pier had more attractions, like seal lions, ladies on tightropes, a carousel and plenty of fried desserts. While the sun set, we all hiked back up Nob Hill.

Tomorrow, we have an exciting day planned! Stay tuned. :)

Love you all,
Joe and Sophia

Coit Tower

It was overcast all morning again. After it cleared up, I walked over to Coit Tower, a monument on Telegraph Hill. The hills were so steep that the sidewalks had stairs on them! At the top of the stairs, there was a beautiful 360 degree view of San Francisco. You could see the Transamerica Pyramid, the Bay Bridge, Nob Hill, Treasure Island, and the piers.

Murals and frescoes were painted on the walls inside of the tower, and an elevator takes you up to the very top. I eavesdropped on a tour guide's conversation, and she said normally you can see for miles, but since it's so foggy, today wouldn't be a good day to pay to see the view. So, I didn't. I roamed around the tower, gazed at the tops of mansions that had gardens and swimming pools on the roofs, and listened to the parrots squawk.

I walked back down and just wandered through the city. I stumbled upon the official Beat Generation museum and spent nearly an hour flipping through Hunter S. Thompson and Bukowski books, talking to the owner, and beaming at all of the Jack Kerouac memorabilia.

When Joe and Elliot came back, we headed to an Italian Restaurant with a couple of their work friends/classmates. We walked across the street for gelato and the employees offered so many samples, we didn't have room for any more! I'm still amazed at how friendly everyone is here. It's contagious and inspiring.


Thursday, May 26, 2011

Lombard Street

My dad mentioned the "crookedest" street, so I went to visit it today! It wasn't until I got to Lombard Street when I realized I probably took the most strenuous path to get there.

Once I reached the bottom of the street, I was amazed with how busy it was. People from China and India to Germany and Brazil were laughing with all the traffic congesting Lombard. Cabs, segways, children, cars, bikes, and even tennis balls were rolling down the street. I also ran into someone in my accounting program at UNT (the world is shrinking!).

I relaxed a bit before meeting Joe at his bus stop. Joe had another busy day of orientation classes, but he's really enjoying his time in Silicon Valley. We had dinner at Tuk Tuk Thai restaurant and later picked up some tiramisu down the street. Tomorrow, we will meet my cousin, Nima, for a birthday dinner downtown! Keep reading. :)

Love you all,

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

The Financial District

I woke up to the rings of cable cars and the light rain hitting the window. As soon as the rain stopped, I walked through China Town again on my way to the financial district. It was more lively this time around.

It seemed pretty quiet for such a busy city, mainly because many people were quickly devouring their lunch at nearby cafes. I saw everything from street performances and hustling business people to petitioners and protesters. I window-shopped for a while, grabbed some coffee and headed toward Union Park. I was pretty tired once I got back from the two mile walk (or hike, rather).

After meeting Joe at his bus stop, we headed back to the apartment. I made pasta and grilled cheeses and we watched the Mavs game (another close one!). I had plans to visit Joe at work tomorrow, but we might reschedule. Joe's been pretty tired, but you'll hear from him soon! :)

With love,

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

San Francisco

This city is incredible. Not only is the weather near perfect, but the people are jovial and extremely positive.

On Monday, we grabbed lunch at a quiet Italian cafe, and after walking up all the steep hills, it was like we never even ate. We visited China Town and the strolled through parks along Pacific Avenue. We keep discovering vibrant, colorful places on each street.

On Tuesday, Joe started his first day at his internship. Although he was drained today, he has a lot to look forward to this summer. The commute is manageable and the campus has plenty of food and amenities to offer.

I caught a glimpse of a park on my way to the grocery store, and later that day, I checked it out. The park was full of dogs catching frisbees, children playing tag, and businessmen eating lunch. I kept getting distracted from my new book as soon as kids cheerfully laughed or dogs laid down lazily next to me.

I walked over to a bookstore a few blocks away (which felt like dozens after climbing those hills!) and lost track of time perusing through all the books I'd someday like to read. In the evening, Joe and I met at an Indian restaurant next to his bus stop.

I plan to discover more beautiful places and people tomorrow.
Love you all,