Wednesday, November 16, 2011

San Francisco - Day 1

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Our flight took off at 6:30 am so we’d set our alarms for 4:00 to make sure we’d get to the airport in plenty of time. Due to our excitement, we both woke up with no problem and had quite cheery dispositions. The flight was uneventful except for the strangest flight attendant we’ve ever encountered. She was totally passive aggressive. I’m not sure if she’d had a fight with her husband, boyfriend, or dog that morning but everything that came out of her mouth had us tilting our heads in amused confusion. We were both expecting her final words to be, “Thank you for flying United. You can all go to hell.”

Once we arrived in San Francisco we took a taxi to the rental car agency and picked up a brand new Impala (holla). We were on our way north! We drove over the Golden Gate Bridge and straight to Muir Woods National Monument. What I thought would be a quick side excursion turned into one of the highlights of our trip. Muir Woods was absolutely breathtaking. We were there early enough that we didn’t have to share the path with many others, which meant a nice relaxing stroll in the middle of a redwood forest (“to the gulf stream waters”). As I mentioned in an earlier post, this was where we celebrated our 4th anniversary. Not bad!

Do you see me?

And a short video if you're interested... (Michael was making a funny noise in the background. You might not be able to hear it but that is why I say, "That's Michael." I did not name the tree Michael. Thank you.)

We stopped by the gift shop and picked up a ceramic mug commemorating our time at Muir Woods. By this point we’d worked up an appetite so we drove south to Sausalito and had lunch at Le Garage. This place was terrific! While it was actually in a garage (French garage?), the place was pretty upscale and the food was delicious. Michael had a Kobe beef burger and I had lobster salad, all the while enjoying the boats docked right outside.

We did a “driving tour” (navigated by yours truly) of Sausalito and then continued north to Healdsburg (wine country). Healdsburg was one of the coolest towns we’ve ever visited and I highly recommend it if you are visiting the area. It was quaint without being cute, busy without being touristy. If that makes sense. We checked into the H2Hotel (another highlight of the trip) and then walked around the Town Square. La Crema was one of my favorite wines from my waitressing days so we made sure to stop at their tasting room. The sommelier was new and decent at best but we had a great time and the wine was delicious. Afterward we walked to Williamson Wines, which is a tiny vineyard in Healdsburg. It was there we met Reese, the sweetest guy ever. He knew so much about their wines and paired each tasting with a bite o' food. In case you are curious, there are two very large differences between wine tasting in wine country vs. everywhere else: The pours are very generous and oftentimes there is no bucket. You don’t love it? You still drink it. That being the case, I was feeling FANTASTIC by the end of our second tasting. At one point I told Reese I couldn’t feel my face, which was immediately followed by an “Oooook, Reese could you give us a moment?” from Michael. I got a “lock it up” lecture (haha) and then we proceeded to join their wine club for a year. (Sidenote: we received our first shipment last week and I was so scared the wine would taste terrible sober. Wrong! It was still delicious!)

After walking around a bit more, we went back to our hotel and got ready for dinner at the Spoon Bar. It was the restaurant inside our hotel and they’d opened the walls (windows) since it was such a pretty evening. We had a lovely view of the Town Square as well as the Rangers game. We were both tired by this point so we asked that dessert be delivered to our room. I had two bites before falling asleep. It was the perfect first day.

H2Hotel (Highly recommend--amazing and environmentally friendly!)

Bamboo floors


The Spoon Bar (Hotel Restaurant and where we had dinner)

10,000 spoons (when all ya need is a knife)

Up close

View of the balconies

The bottom of this picture is the "green living roof" of our hotel (filters rainwater and reduces the amount of heat the hotel gives off. Learn more here!)

Park in Healdsburg

This is probably 5 minutes before I couldn't feel my face. Lovely.

Stay tuned for Day 2, the day we traveled through wine country!


Melissa said...

so fun!! love all the pictures...and i feel ya. been there with the whole face thing when we went up that way one spring break. so fun yall did this...still one of the best trips I ever did was with a few roomates up PCH, through Napa, Redwoods, all way to Seattle. Such beautiful stuff up there (way more so than So.Cal in my opinion)

Susie said...

I want to go!!!!!

Leslie said...

Nice Alanis reference :)

Kaitlin said...

haha, that pic of you laughing is classic :) Love the hotel!

Jax said...

hah.. "5 minutes before I couldn't feel my face" - AWESOME. :)

Love that you ate at Le Garage, too!!! That's where we went for our last dinner in CA!

I need to finish my posting. I honestly forgot. I have one day left. Oops.

Ashley said...

You know you're having a good time when you can't feel your face! Muir Woods is gorgeous!!

Summer said...

Gorg pictures yet again Merd!!!

Rachel said...

I want to lose feeling in my face.

It sounds like a finger puppet show is taking place when Michael makes that noise.

Trish said...

Wow--never heard of Muir Woods NM but if I ever head back to SF then I'm definitely going to make a side trip. A few years ago Scott and I detoured through Sequoia NP and it was amazing--but winter so now quite as green.

Still love the 10000 spoons picture--so great!


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