First Stop: 48 hours in San Fransisco
We weren't expecting much from San Fransisco. We'd been together in May 2012. It was our first flight together.
However, my memory of that trip is tainted due to a death in my family, which unexpectedly cut our trip a few days short. Neither of us had been back since. When we decided to fly to Fiji, we found that nearly all flights went through San Fransisco. One of my former Treasure Island roommates currently lives in San Fransisco, so we decided to make a trip of it. And man are we glad we did.
We arrived at the airport early on the morning of January 31st. The feeling was surreal, knowing everything was ahead. It was the first time I felt unencumbered, actually free. Will and I both continued to refer to the trip as "next year." But now it was this year. In fact, it was today.
We landed at 11 a.m. PT, dropped our packs off at our friends' apartment in the Mission District, and quickly turned around to explore. It was high 60s and sunny. Almost comically picturesque. The kind of weather that makes you feel like you're doing it all wrong, not living in California. We spent two days walking what felt like the entire city.
We enjoyed hearty sandwiches at Mission Picnic which completely hit the spot. We walked down Market Street to the Embarcadero Waterfront.
We winded through Little Italy, then back to the Mission District. The friends we were staying with recently got engaged, so we popped a bottle of champagne and caught up. For dinner, we went to Taqueria Cancun.
We woke up on Wednesday vowing not to walk as much. Naturally, we walked further. We grabbed brunch at Morning Due Cafe. Several coffees later, we headed to our walking tour, conducted by the San Fransisco Public Library. The free tours--donations welcomed--came highly recommended to us by the friends we stayed with. Having an entire day to kill, we gave it a try. And can honestly say it is by far the best tour we've been on. Will and I aren't necessarily guided tour kinda people. However, this one didn't compare. We chose the Landmark Victorians of Alamo Square. We experienced a few of the city's most decorated, meticulously restored homes.
We were also given the unique opportunity to get a tour of The Brune Reutlinger House by the owner. Located at 824 Grove Street, it was built in 1886. The tour guide dubbed it the most elaborately decorated Victorian house in San Fransisco. The details were incredible.
After the living room, we toured the dining room and kitchen--always a favorite of mine. The gas stove from 1926, and still used by it's inhabitants.
We proceeded down to the ballroom in the basement.
We listened to music on an original Seeburg Orchestrion, an electric coin-controlled piano. Ahead of it's time, it produces the effect if a six-piece orchestra.
After, we walked around the neighborhood, learning about the various types of Victorian homes. The Italiante Slanted Bay from the 1870s, Stick from the 1880s, Queen Anne Tower House from the 1890s. Will has a strong affinity forarchitecture and thus couldn't get enough.
We finished outside of the Painted Ladies.
After legit basking in the sun, and more iced coffee breaks, we made our way to Lombard Street.
We filled our two days to capacity. After walking over a combined 20 miles, we were quite ready for our 11 hour flight to Fiji. Will is daunted by sitting still for an extended period of time, but the reward on the other side will be quite worth it, I'm sure.