Originally uploaded by megan_n_smith_99
i have returned! last tuesday morning my friend brent kindly delivered janusz and i to the airport. our flight was scheduled to depart at 9:25, but actually departed at 10:55 due to fog in san francisco.
we landed around 1:00 and got on BART, which was very handy. we walked from the powell st. station to our hotel, which was on nob hill. the golden gateway holiday inn. then we walked to china town, over nob hill and and wandered a bit, then off the SFMOMA for the FRIDA KAHLO show which was wonderful! also, the SFMOMA gift shop is the best museum gift shop i have ever been to by far. janusz and i both got a few books and some gifts. he splurged and got a huge book on DADA among other things. i focused more on frida. we both really enjoyed the show a lot. there were quite a few paintings -- more than i expected to see in 1 place, and lots of photographs. i saw a number of paintings i had never seen reproductions of and i had never seen any originals before -- needless to say they are much better than the reproductions.
after the show we went back to chinatown and had dinner at The Empress, a really amazing place. the food was quite good, but the ambiance was unbelievable. and given how nice it was, i thought the bill would be about 50% higher than it was. we had wonton soup, almond chicken, and janusz had some sort of pork dish, i forget what. i tasted it but it was a bit too spicy for me!
the website: Empress.
then we walked back to the hotel and went to bed.
on wednesday we had breakfast at Mel's drive-in, a 50s style diner, then walked to golden gate park. which was quite the walk and lots up-hill. did see lots of beautiful victorians on the way. at the park we went to the chihuly show at the de young art museum, which was quite nicely done, especially the blanket room. of course it was not really any great surprise to me, since i spent a long time working on that show. then we had a lovely tea in the tea garden, and visited the shakespeare garden.
after that we took a bus down to the mission district. (through the haight, so i got to see it even though we did not get off the bus..) we visited several shops in the mission district which i must mention by name, as they were so cool:
paxton gate.. everything in this shop was so cool.. bones, fossils, taxidermy (okay some sort of creepy too) and all sorts of unusual and unexpected things. (janusz has become smitten with an otter skeleton who is called oberon.) i am sure mandy would have loved it. their website: Paxton Gate.
then we went next door to a place i can't even explain, the pirate supply store. their website: 826 Valencia.
be sure to read their uses for LARD.
needless to say i never would have found those shops on my own, janusz guided me to them. also a voo-doo supply store, which he was quite keen to go to, though he said he was disappointed in the selection. the incense was too strong for me so i retreated.
we stumbled upon a wonderful store for lovers of zines and self publishing..Little Otsu.
i quite enjoyed that. then we found some wonderful alley murals. after that it was off to the fisherman's wharf. which was too touristy for me. we did see the sea lions, though not well since it was dark by then. certainly heard them. janusz had his clam chowder in a sourdough bowl and i, after many adventures, managed to obtain some lobster bisque. also stumbled upon the rip squeak gallery. that made me happy. because i like mice.
by then it was about 10 and i was ready to collapse, so we went back to the hotel and went to bed. this morning we got up early, packed, took a cable car ride, and spent the last few hours wandering around chinatown, union square, and yerba buena gardens, had breakfast in a real french cafe, and hopped on BART back to the airport.
in 48 hours we walked a bit over 10 miles, i am utterly exhausted! my poor twiggy ankles. i am glad janusz was with me. he had been to SF several times before and turns out to have a good sense of direction. he did an excellent job as companion and navigator. i am sure i would have done much less and been lost and stressed out more had he not gone with me.