Flying home is tough, but today was tougher than normal since our flight wasn’t until 8:30. I think I would almost prefer a midday flight. We theoretically had enough time to do some stuff, but we managed to accomplish all that we had set out to do in the prior 5 days. So it was going to be awkward. As I sit here, we were 3 hours early for our 8:30 PM flight to Denver, but it has been delayed by an hour, so we will be sitting here for some time!!!
The morning started late, again. If there has been one constant on this trip it has been how late we can sleep! Today, nobody even stirred until almost 8:30. We were almost too late to take in the free breakfast that Embassy Suites offers each morning until 9:30!!! Mireille and I did manage to get some breakfast on time, and Quinton got there just as they were cleaning up, so they allowed him to eat the leftovers.
By 10:00 we were checked out and on the road, with really nowhere to go and nothing to do!!! After our typical morning Starbucks with the addition of a dozen donut holes, we decided to go east a bit and check out UC Berkley. Actually we just drove past it, but it didn’t disappoint. In comparison to the colleges we had been looking at, it was massive! We didn’t even drive all the way around it, but you could tell it was big!
We continued our trek south, acknowledging that San Francisco benefitted greatly by having this “other shore.” It seems like they keep all the nice things for San Francisco and offload some of the major not-nice things over here, like some massive homeless tent cities, lots of garbage, and the bigger shipping yard facilities. It would be fun to check this area out some more in the future, but the kids were getting hungry, so we continued on.
All in all, the trip was WAY longer than expected. A bridge toll on the Bay Bridge ($4) backed us up about 40 minutes, then just general city traffic made the trip almost 90 minutes long. We didn’t really know where we were going, so we randomly picked “Jenny’s Burgers” near Golden Gate Park to eat. When we got there, we found a really neat little neighborhood with lots of shops and restaurants. We ate at an New York Pizza place that was clearly run by an Asian family as evidenced by the Buddha and Kitty statues behind the counter. What I can only assume were the owners were a very sweet, older Asian couple. Our waiter was very amused that Mireille would want chicken wings for her meal, and spicy ones at that!
We walked around a little bit, but we were getting antsy. I didn’t want to be stuck in SF traffic during rush hour trying to catch a plane, so we picked a brewery closest to the airport, Armstrong Brewery in South San Francisco, and set our sights there.
It was… fine… The beer was pretty good, but the atmosphere was a little dark, since it was a below-ground space. All told we spent about 2 hours there sampling beers and playing Uno before we decided to just try our luck at the airport, which is where we sit now, awaiting our 9:30 flight (it is 6:15).
In retrospect, this has been one of our more enjoyable vacations. It started out with the stomach flu, but we stayed with our recent formula of just planning one thing per day and filling in the rest of the day as we go. It has made for a very relaxing trip, though I’m sure I’ll still be tired when I try to go to work again tomorrow!