For no known reason to Derek, me, or the rest of humanity, Faro decided to welcome the day with a run at seven in the morning. Sipe and I thought it best that we watch the house and protect our beds while Faro was out. We did a good job of it, too.
We nibbled on an assortment of snack bars, chips, and dry cereal for breakfast with a little Gatorade to wash it down the hatch. Today was a big day for sightseeing as we would be venturing to various sections of Frisco (as the locals call it) and experience some of what it has to offer. This was the first day I think that we did not travel in a car; the faithful van remained parked in the garage. Let’s hear a round of applause for public transportation!
But before you hop the Muni in San Fran, make sure you know what direction you’re headed. Otherwise, you’ll ride to one end of the rail, get told to get off, wait for five minutes while the lady twiddles her thumbs, get picked up again, then wait five more minutes while she pounds a bucket of fried chicken that looks (and apparently is) finger-licking good. Just a word to the wise.
Eventually, we found ourselves on the famous Pier 39. This place was worth the time and effort spent. It had lots of great smelling restaurants including that waffle-cone shop that I was sinning over. I’m a glutton and I know it. The pier also had a stage where a magician was performing. After he dropped the fifth ball, we departed (like his juggling skills seemed to have done long ago). Then we found some grub. I love food. Man, do I ever love food!
After the pier, we toured the boardwalk leading us down to Fisherman’s Wharf. On the way, we passed an In-N-Out Burger. My willpower waned in a moment of wonderful weakness and I bought a milkshake. What a great day!
During our wandering, we passed a homeless guy holding two bundles of branches with leaves. He hid behind them then scared passersby. One young lady found it amusing and said, “Good job, Treeman.” He instantly yelled back, “It’s Bushman. Get it right.”
Later we saw a street performer who didn’t really perform anything. He was dressed like a grandpa out of England from the early 1900s. He stood with green plaid socks pulled to his knees, tucked under khaki knickers, completed with a wool sweater vest, matching jacket, and Newsies hat. His round spectacles and waxed mustache only perfected the solid look. His act was playing old circus music while handling three large, silver rings. I say handling because he didn’t really do anything with them beside hold them and delicately move them one-by-one form hand to hand. It wasn’t all that entertaining but somehow it captivated me. I still don’t know if he’s real or not. If I had to bet I’d say no but I’ll let you seek him out for yourself.
We also saw Ghirardelli Square and some other neat places. But our last activity took us to AT&T Park where we watched the Giants play the Cardinals. I don’t know if you’re as interested as I am but I’ll explain just in case you are. Apparently the Giants are a baseball team who play professional in San Francisco in the MLB. Don’t worry, you haven’t been missing much all these years.
The park was awesome as it overlooked the bay but it also was cold as it overlooked the bay. (Sort of a one-step-forward-one-step-back kind of deal.) The night would have been better if we could have purchased some food but since we didn’t have $50 to drop on garlic fries, a hotdog, and a coke we waited for food. Like anyone cares, but the Giants won 4-2.
Funny story. At the game, we met a family from Australia who was sitting behind us. The dad took a liking to our crew and we have several mini conversations throughout the long and tedious game. Well, on the rail ride home, Faro turns to Sipe and me and tells us the Australians visited Alcatraz today. I guess he didn’t see that the Australian guy’s son was standing right there. To make matters a little less awkward, I asked the kid if they indeed saw Alcatraz and we talked for a bit.
With this road trip, everyday has been fun. We have plenty more days ahead but I’m trying not to live in the future, or in the past for that matter. It’s something I read in my John Wooden book. I think it’s an insightful point he makes.
“The door to the past has been shut and the key thrown away. You can do nothing about tomorrow. It is yet to come. However, tomorrow is in large part determined by what you do today. So make today your masterpiece.”
Coach Frey of the Messiah Women’s Soccer team has a phrase he tells his ladies. It’s good advice for them (it must be the way they dominated Division III soccer this year.) But also good advice for the rest of us looking to live lives that matter. It’s a simple line: “Let’s be fantastic!”
- JD and the boys