Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Travel Diaries, Day 6: Final day in San Francisco

Welcome to my 2011 CA Vacation mini-series. ...Jon & I spent a week in San Francisco & Wine Country during September, and slowly but surely it is my pleasure to relive the memories & share our stories with you, one post at a time!

Friday was our last day in California, and so, understandably, when the alarm chirped bright and early, I sprang out of bed, ready to seize the last day and soak up every last minute!(East to West time change is glorious, people. ...I was up & at 'em bright and early each morning, and by the time lunchtime rolled around each day, we all ready had a good amount of "touring" under our belts. ... Of course, on the flip-side, we were pretty much done for by 8 pm every night....)

I began my day with a little "Today Show" on the treadmill, and then joined Jon for a leisurely hotel breakfast. From there, our first destination of the day was Telegraph Hill, and Coit Tower.

I am convinced that when you are in San Francisco, the journey is just as vivacious as the destination. ...We wound our way through the city and up the hills (Jon's comment to me: (huff, puff) "Now I know why you brought me to to California. ...You wanted to kill me & get a new husband... Happy anniversary to you, too!" (huff, puff) Once I could catch my breath, I laughed and assured him that this was most definitely NOT the case ;) ... pausing at an overlook at the end of Telegraph Hill to take pictures in a small park and ogle the view.

::Gorgeous ♥::

Once our heart rate came down a little, we proceeded to the top of the hill :)

Coit Tower is awesome not only for the spectacular, panoramic views of the city, but for the amazing murals inside the building. When you enter the tower, you find yourself in a circular room: floor to ceiling art. The colorful display showcases the city's rich history. (Here is a link to some pictures!) ...We wandered around inside the tower for quite a while!

Our walk back to Pier 39 was equally lovely ♥

(Aren't these some of the coolest plants you've ever seen?)

The remainder of the day was pretty mellow. We grabbed lunch (clam chowder in bread bowls) at the Eagle Cafe, and the proceeded to the Aquarium, where we spent a couple hours scared awed by the huge fish. (As I told Jon, they're gorgeous... but if I was in that tank, I'd be flipping the heck out ;)

The aquarium had several tanks that you walked through (like a tunnel), and having massive sharks and sparkly little schools of fish swimming over top of you was really something else!

After the aquarium, we relaxed in the sunshine on the dock, reminiscing about our favorite parts of the trip. We had a great time watching the sea lions sun themselves... It was fun to see how graceful they were in the water... and how awkward & un-weildy they are on land! (Also, if you zoom in on the picture, I'm pretty certain the big gray guy in the middle is smiling!)

Dinner that night was, in a word, stellar. We dined at the Fog Harbor Fish House, and had a breathtaking view of the sunset on the water. We sipped wine (erm, I sipped wine... Jon sampled the local micro-brew ;), and lingered over lemony calamari (appetizer), ahi tuna (her) and fish & chips (him -- side note: Jon's favorite thing to order at a restaurant, second only to perhaps steak, is fish & chips. ... I'm pretty sure he's a fish & chips connoisseur...Heh.) It was one of those nights were we didn't do a lot of talking; we just quietly enjoyed each others' company :) I just remember thinking to myself, "How lucky I am to be here right now... with my very best friend... experiencing all this." I know that years from now we will look back on this vacation & remember how special it was.

Our night ended with a moonlit stroll back to the hotel, with a bag of hot donuts in hand. (Seriously, friends, I could not leave SF without eating those glorious mini-donuts one last time ;) We scheduled a taxi pick-up for the next morning, and then headed upstairs for coffee, donuts, and some packing (we had an *eaaarrrllly* flight out the next morning-- taxi pick up was at 5:15 am!)

~ ~ ~ ~ ~
...And thus concludes my CA 2011 vacation recaps.

I'm ready to go back now, please :)

In all seriousness, though, it was an amazing time. I feel so blessed that Jon & I had the opportunity to celebrate our anniversary in wine country. I don't know what our future holds... and I hope it will grace us with many more beautiful adventures like this one-- but this trip in particular will be forever imprinted on my heart... and I'll always remember the fall of 2011, when I left part of my heart in San Francisco California.

Your Turn: What places do you want to visit in your lifetime? Have you gotten a chance to check any of them off your list yet?