Monday, February 11, 2013

Sittin' on the Dock of the Bay

While I was traveling Europe, whenever I told someone I was from San Francisco, these were the responses I got most often:

1) I've ALWAYS wanted to go there!/It's my life dream to go there!
2) I went there in ____ and it was my favorite/most beautiful/etc place I've ever visited! 
3) I wish I could move there!/I want to live there someday! 
4) Are there really a lot of gay people there?  (Answer: Yes, there are, and it's awesome.) 

Though I have lived in a quite a few cities throughout my life, they have all been in the Bay Area. When you live somewhere your entire life you tend to start to become immune to its beauty and character. You get bored of it, you stop seeing all of the benefits of living there, you want to be transported to wondrous foreign places - trust me, I know the feeling. So when I heard people say all these things to me, it really made me take a step back and realize how blessed I am to live where I live. There are things I see on my commute to work that some people dream their entire life of seeing. Since I've been back home (which has almost been TWO whole months - what the hell!!) I've been wanting to spend a day in San Francisco as a tourist to refreshen my perspective on it. Though I have done most touristy stuff, I haven't done it in a looooooong time. So long that I don't even remember doing most of it! 

The other day I checked my work calendar and saw I got scheduled to work an event 9pm on Friday night with my friend Julie (for those of you who've followed my blog for a while, Julie is one of my friends who came to visit me while I was living in Paris.) I knew Julie would be the perfect tourist buddy because she, like me, has also lived here her whole life. I asked her if she wanted to spend the day being a tourist with me before we headed over to work (our work headquarters are in downtown SF, so it worked out perfectly). She enthusiastically agreed and we set a date. We also invited our two friends from college, Kait and Chloe, to come with us, making it a lovely little reunion. 

We started off our day in the Mission District where we feasted on some delicious Mexican food (fun fact: the modern day burrito was created in Northern California!) before heading over to Lombard Street where I drove down it for the first time! I had been down Lombard before but not as the actual driver, so I was happy to check that off my bucket list. Don't worry, I was careful not to run over any tourists on my way down. Afterwards we decided to head up to Coit Tower which I had literally NEVER been up to, and oh my god had I been missing out. The view was absolutely breathtaking. Well worth the $7 you pay to go up to the top! 

(Coit Tower)

 (One of the more aweing parts of the 360 degree view from the top) 

(Julie and I being touristy!) 

You can't have a touristy day in San Francisco without going to the Golden Gate Bridge, so after we finished at Coit Tower we headed over to take a night walk on it. I've walked the Golden Gate a couple of times before when I was much younger (maybe 10 or 11?) and I had never done it at night. It ended up being an awesome time to go - we went RIGHT before they closed the walkways to pedestrian traffic and we ended up being the ONLY pedestrians on the bridge!! Weirdest. Thing. Ever. But so cool. It was much scarier than I remember it being (I got some crazy vertigo looking over the railing into the bay) but it was so gorgeous, and the view at night was lovely. Then we headed over to Pier 39 where we grabbed some dessert and enjoyed the pier before parting ways with Kait and Chloe so we could head off to work. 

(reaching the first pillar!) 

(Ice cream is always appropriate when its freezing cold outside. At least it is in Julie's mind.)

Overall it was a really fun day and it definitely made me fall more in love with SF. That being said, I do still want to try living somewhere else! But my heart will always be in San Francisco. 

I actually filmed this entire day on my video camera and had planned to edit footage and post my very first "vlog",  but sadly when I went to upload the footage I discovered that my mother's video camera is not compatible with Apple computers. EPIC TECHNOLOGY FAIL. (#firstworldproblems)  I do want to start vlogging though, so keep a look out for some ridiculous videos in future posts! 

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