san francisco, ca
flew into san francisco from burbank. a bit of a delay at the airport. and then when i arrived at sfo, i went to the departures to get picked up. that didn’t work out. departures is on a different level than the arrivals. finally figured it out and got picked up. we went straight to the hotel. the hotel majestic is a great old hotel. very elegant looking. i stayed in the “tv” room as usual. it’s the room where people don’t mind the tv being on all night. it was, me, sue, theresa, and lisa. gramma, mom, carole, and lily were in the “quiet” room.
we walked to grubstake for dinner. it is a portuguese american diner that i saw on the triple d. it was really close to our hotel. it still has the original dining car with an addition built on. the dining car was used in the humphrey bogart noir film, dark passage. i think the owner was our waiter (if i remember correctly from diners, drive-in, and dives). lisa got the caldo verde and i tried it. it was delicious. the recipe i have, i got from my mom, and she got from her gramma is a broth based soup. grubstake’s was a creamy version with linguisa in it, too. i ordered the strike, which was a cheeseburger. it was yummy. mom got a shrimp dish and it came with the biggest new potato i’d ever seen. i wonder if it was from the owner’s garden. the kale in the caldo verde was from his garden. we had a nice time at dinner. we walked back to the hotel and got some snacks at the corner store. the grals in the tv room (plus, lily) had snacks and watched a top model marathon. the season where tall, awkward ann beat out know-it-all chelsea. (read their names in whispers, please).
saturday, we had breakfast at the hotel restaurant, the butterfly lounge. then we braved public transportation and took the bus to alamo square. it’s a park that has a view of the painted ladies aka the full house houses. we took another bus to golden gate park. we split up into three groups because we all wanted to do different things. carole, lily, and sue went to the de young museum to see the jean paul gaultier exhibit. it had one of madonna’s pointy bras, apparently. gramma want to see the living roof at the science museum, so her and mom went there. lisa, theresa, and i didn’t really want to do the museum thing, so we went to the carousel and had a pretzel and rode the carousel. we met back at the conservatory of flowers and then walked to the haight for lunch. we ate at the old red victorian hotel, which was a hippy, crunchy granola type deli. i had the blissful bbq (faux) chicken sandwich. it was ok. we split up into two groups after lunch. carole, sue, lily, and mom took a bus to a fabric outlet and gramma, lisa, theresa, and i took a bus back to the hotel. it was really a challenge to do the bus system, because on the way there, mom was in charge of it, so i just had to follow along. this time, we had to figure it out ourselves. the map app on my phone was awesome. it was totally easy to navigate back. we just hung out until the other grals came back. i think i even fell asleep for a bit. we tried to figure out where to go for dinner for a long time. some of us wanted dim sum, some of us didn’t. some of us wanted to walk or take the bus somewhere, some didn’t want to go anywhere. we finally decided on the hotel restaurant. it was italian food and actually pretty good. i had the lasagna and it had mashed potatoes in it. it was kinda weird, but good, too. we went back to the room hoping to find some good bad tv to watch, but there was nothing on. they didn’t even have the bravo channel. we ended up watching storage wars and playing scramble on our phones. carole did a great impression of darrel. “that’s a thirty dollar bill right there.” then, bedtime.
sunday, we packed up our stuff and checked out of the hotel before going to church. we went to 10:30 mass at mission delores. we had a reservation for brunch at the front porch right after church, so we went straight there. it was a great place that carole had heard about on tv. we got two orders of beignets and shared them, so we each got two in our own little paper bags. they were heavenly, especially with the chicory coffee. lily and i shared the chicken and sweet potato waffles. so good. sue had an egg dish that was topped with something called bacon crack. it was like thick bacon coated in maple syrup chopped up. everyone was really happy with this brunch spot. then, we headed back to mission delores so we could actually tour the mission. the mission had the neatest ceiling. a really awesome chevron pattern. we walked through the cemetery in the back. oh, and i got a text from god. or so i thought. i always have my phone on silent and while we were walking to the cemetery, and my phone started making this dinging sound that i have never heard before. i checked and my phone was still on silent. the screen said “important message: hi.” it wasn’t a text or voicemail or email. and then it went away. we all had goosebumps. later, when i told ryan about it, he told me he had lost his phone and was using the find my phone app on his iPad to locate it, but he accidentally did my phone first. the app overrides the silent setting to help you find your phone. oh well.
we had hours of time to kill until my flight, so we drove to inspiration point in the presidio. it has a great view of alcatraz and the ocean. then we drove to the cliff house. it is a restaurant now, but used to be a hotel back in the 1890’s. the third or fourth owner of it was a man named sutro. and he built a bath house next to the cliff house. it had seven pools and a museum and other attractions. it burned down, but the ruins are still there. we had hot chocolates and shared a lava cake. that was a nice end to the trip. all the grals dropped me off at the airport. at the departures level, not arrivals, like they had threatened. the fog was rolling in, but there were no delays. easy flight back. it was one of the best girls trips yet!