David Cook (davidcook) wrote,
David Cook

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Wandering around San Francisco

So, here we are in SF, wandering around and enjoying ourselves. We arrived yesterday, having survived the 15 hours of flying and 3 hours of being in airports (just; there was a turbulent hour or so on the Sydney to SF leg that was very unpleasant (more so for rwrylsin).
The more I fly, the less I enjoy flying. The first time I flew (which happened to be an international flight, on a 747), it was all new and exciting. The takeoff was fun, with a whoosh and a stomp! as we accelerated into the air, and I dozed a lot and stared out the window a lot, and all was good. Since then, though, I've flown a bunch more times, including the trip to the UK last year, flights to Brisbane and Launceston, a few trips to Sydney, and quite a few flights between Adelaide and Melbourne, either during the two years of long-distance relationship between rwrylsin and I, or visiting my parents and friends since my move to Melbourne. Each time, there is less and less fun, and more worry about the ways in which the flight will be boring and unpleasant. Turbulence is the worst of those, for me, after one particular flight into Adelaide. It was hot, around 40 C, and cloudless, and the flight came in over the hills to the northeast. We bounced around like a carnival ride, or so it felt - it was the kind of turbulence that I don't like, where it feels like you're suddenly falling dozens of metres at a time. The bumping and rumbling turbulence I generally don't mind so much, although rwrylsin doesn't like it at all. Yesterday's turbulence was the bumpy kind, but there was enough of it that even I felt tingly and hot all over, and probably turned pale and green at the same time, and I figure that if it had lasted another 15 minutes, things could have turned out rather messily.

Yesterday, sambushell came and showed us some sights and kept us both awake (probably a good thing in our jetlagged state). We saw a large Apple store (rwrylsin accessorized a bit and drooled a lot), and a CompUSA store, and wandered around randomly before having some food at the place next to the hotel we're in.

Today, we got up eventually, went next door again for brunch, then went wandering the city. We started with a wander Eastish, ending up climbing many stairs on Telegraph Hill, then going up Coit Tower, to take in some spectacular views around the city. After that, we wandered out to the docks, where many restaraunts and touristy shops live, then worked our way around to the Fisherman's Wharf area, including the Ghirardelli chocolate shop. I decided I wanted to get closer to the Golden Gate bridge. According to the little tourist map I had, we could take one bus, then connect to another (buses in SF can be a little odd, though, perhaps they should be called "brams" or "trusses" - they have a normal bus body and wheels, but electrical contacts (like those on trams or electrified trains) have been attached on top, thus they can only follow the wired routes. There are other normal busses around, though, as well as electric and cable trams, and I don't think the colours on any two of the vehicles match), and end up near the end of the bridge, then go for a little walk on it. The first bus worked out ok, but we didn't find a bus stop for the other bus route we wanted, so we wandered along a bit, then a bit further. By then we were walking along a narrow pedestrian walkway next to something distinctly freeway-like, where there were definitely no bus stops to be seen. We decided to keep going, since we were fairly sure that the road the path followed ended up at the bridge, and after quite a bit of walking (including a few underpasses to get past exits and entrances on the roadway), we reached the bridge itself. We didn't have the energy to walk all the way across, since it's 3km or so in total, but we went far enough to get spectacular photos and views to admire, then walked back to the beginning of the bridge and down to a carpark area which also turned out to have a bus stop. Glad to have a chance to rest our feet, we waited for the right bus to come along. After three buses on other routes had come, and about 20 minutes had passed, we decided to just take any bus and work our way back to the city from there, and managed to get back to the central area with only a couple of connections.
We had something like a fast food steak dinner (see rwrylsin's entry for a little more detail), and wandered back to the hotel, and here I am. Unfortunately, the promised Net access from our room didn't work (possibly not surprising, since the hotel has just undergone renovations, and we are among the first guests after the reopening), and the wireless access promised for the foyer wasn't working too well until we moved back behind the foyer a bit. I've caught up on most of my friendslist reading now, and mail and other bits and pieces too. Now it's time to wander off and get some sleep, since we fly out of here tomorrow, stopping for an hour or so in Frankfurt before finally getting to Edinburgh. Whee !
We're nearly there, and then we just have to work out all the details of starting our lives up in a new city (and we're not yet sure if that city will be Edinburgh or Glasgow, as this stage we're going with whichever one can provide us both with suitable jobs). I'm sure that'll inspire more journal entries than ever before :-)

(meanwhile, any Edinburgh LJ people reading this, want to randomly meet sometime ? I don't promise anything more than jetlag-inspired babbling from rwrylsin and I, but it'd be nice to know at least a few people in a new place).

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