Thanks to a lovely new(ish) person in our lives, we have an excellent East Bay events organizer. We started off with a trip to the Alameda Point Antiques Faire, held on the first Saturday of each month. If you go, wear tennis shoes, sunscreen, and bring water. Enormous is an understatement. The gates open as early as 6 am for those who, I suppose, know exactly what they’re after. But if you’re there to wander and find surprises, I would recommend going after 9 am when the entrance fee drops to $5. We spent several hours investigating stalls with furniture, antique jewelry, pillows, board games from our youth, art, and “art.” If I had been left to my own devices, I may have come home with a bounty of new (old) costume jewelry that would be appropriate only for playing dress-up, but that I would have totally loved for all of its sparkliness. As it stands, I only came away with popcorn and fun pictures, but I think our little studio apartment and its other occupant probably appreciated that…this time.
After the Antique Fair, we ate delicious burritos at a little whole-in-the-wall place in Alameda called Ramiro and Sons. My foodie brother calls these some of the best burritos he’s ever eaten! That’s a high recommendation, so check them out if you’re in the area.
It was then on to the Pacific Pinball Museum, a GroupOn find that was just too unusual to pass up.
When we walked in and saw the one room filled with antique pinball machines (with unlimited free play), my first thought was that it was definitely cool, but I was glad we had a GroupOn because that made the admission price worth it. Plus, this room contained the “Pinball Wizard” pinball machine of the movie/song fame. What I didn’t realize was that this was only the first room of five. The rooms are themed and progress forward in time. I found my bliss somewhere around 1950 with enough bells and whistles to keep it interesting, but no flashing lights or disappearing pinballs to make it overwhelming. Because the museum features unlimited free play, we played for hours. And yes, I am sad to admit that my wrists were sore the next day.
The perfect way to finish Easy Bay Day (#1) was with ice cream sandwiches down the street from the museum.