Our second visitors, and first from the other side of the family, made a trip out to visit San Francisco and San Jose. I’m going to stop counting visitors, now, since the docket is booked for the next several months! AKA, that’s more visitors to San Francisco in the first four months that I’ve lived here than the total number of visitors to Stow. (Sorry Stow, I love you heaps, but despite my claim that you had the BEST ice cream in the WORLD, it wasn’t enough to attract more than a handful of visitors…)
Our second visitors are the type that like to see the local places and the off-the-beaten-path locales, which was good for exploring because, again, I’ve only lived here four months and my repertoire is still largely built around the Saturday morning farmers’ market at the Ferry Building and the Pier 39-ish area. Despite our commitment to explore the areas listed at the back of our guidebook (or not listed at all), I did still force everyone to the very touristy, but very delicious, Ghirardelli Square for candy and hot chocolate.
Thanks to my brother, we had great restaurant recommendations. We kicked off the visit with a trip to Hog and Rocks, a Mission neighborhood restaurant that specializes in oysters, ham, and whiskey.
We then headed across that iconic Golden Gate Bridge and into the Marin Headlands for the classic, “Look! Here’s me/us with the Golden Gate Bridge in the background!” (Visitors be warned: whether you want to go there or not, I will still take you there because I love it. And yes, I take the same photos every time. And yes, family, I will have a collection of me with the same smile and sunglasses in a series of different shirts that will, likely, make it into your next Christmas calendar.)
From there we headed into trendy Sausalito. Although it was our first visit, our guests were old pros. (We went to Sausalito on their suggestion.) It’s a small community, with only about 7000 residents, but is a picturesque seaside town. And it comes with quite the lovely variety of local artists:
Note to family: If you don’t get my bridge series calendar, you’ll likely be getting a male mermaid that I will expect to be displayed proudly and prominently in your home.
After a delicious fish, chips, and clam chowder dinner on a terrace facing the water, we headed back to the city for chocolate.
Our brother-in-law was occupied in San Jose with a conference (thanks, Cisco, for holding your conference in our neck of the woods!), so my sister-in-law was up for exploration and made a trip to Palo Alto complete with chai tea bowls (too large to be considered a cup), a tour of Stanford’s campus, and dinner at a downtown Palo Alto Burmese restaurant.