Monday, June 25, 2007

Day 3

Hello!!! So I'm updating tonight and it might be the last for a few days, I'm not sure if we'll have internet at the lodge in Yosemite, which is where we're headed tomorrow!

Today was the first day of our tour, and boy was it packed with stuff to do. We woke up around 7ish and got ready to get some breakfast, and then we were on the bus at 8. First we toured around San Francisco for a couple of hours and got see all the different areas. We saw the city hall which was so beautiful! It was a huge huge building in the middle of town and it was just gorgeously decorated with gold and blue.

Then, we headed over to the Golden Gate bridge and finally got to drive over it! It was so cool I always remember watching Full House and seeing that big orange bridge in the beginning of the show and now I'm driving over it and taking a picture of it up close!

After we headed across the Golden Gate bridge, we took a quick rest stop and then headed to Napa Valley, (aka WINE COUNTRYYY). We went to Cline Cellars and it was really pretty and my parents and Mike got to taste about nine different wines (I smelled 'em) and we had some really good cheese. That lasted for a little bit and then we went into Sonoma and took a two hour lunch break. There were lots of little shops and places to eat. There was this really cool store that was all imported products from all exotic countries. I got a painted leather ring from Africa there! It's so pretty. We got some food at a place called Mary's and it was pretty good. Then we hopped back on the bus to head back to San Francisco. I fell asleep on the bus because I was wiped out... but I was recharged by the time I got to San Francisco I was all set for the boat tour! We hopped on a cruise boat and we went into the San Francisco Bay for a windy and chilly, but interesting, tour of the Bay and San Francisco's coast. We drove underneath the Golden Gate Bridge which was SO COOL! Then we passed by the island of Alcatraz which was a big prisoners island. Then we got back to the wharf and went to dinner at a really yummy restaurant where me and mom had Dungeonous crab, calamari, clams, mussels and shrimp and Michael had fried calamari and dad had veal. Everything was great! We finished up dinner with some chocolate ice cream and Mike got creme brule. So now we are back in the hotel and watching some TV and relaxing.

So... goodnight! And I hope to talk to you guys soon!

Again, here's the link to more pictures :

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Day 2

Hello!!! So let's start off with mom waking up at four in the morning because it was actually seven in our heads and we started off the day reaaally early. We took a walk over to Pergamino's breakfast joint and had a good hearty, homemade meal. The coffee was self serve and they had a large choice of really homey mug (see image one!). Instead of a cup o' joe, mom had a cup o' bob. We all had eggs, Mike had a crab and tomato omelet, yum! We all had really good juice and a meal and then we headed out. We walked down to Fisherman's Wharf and spent a lot of time at Pier 39. The weather is gorgeous, about 70-80 degrees in the sun, 50 in the shade! Dad was very content with the temperature today! Down at Pier 39 there are a lot of shops and we got to see sea lions on the docks that they have all set up for them and we saw a mom with all her little babies! We walked around the Pier for a while, we had checkout at noon, so we headed back to the hotel with plans of going back to the wharf to go into the aquarium! If you don't know, I love fish. I especially love aquariums, so you can assume that I was very excited to get back. We were able to check in early to the Hilton for one of the rooms, so we did so and then realized how exhausted all of us were! We planned out the rest of the afternoon with time in the middle for a well-needed nap! We headed back to Pier 39 (me, with more comfortable shoes) and got tickets for the aquarium! It was really cool!!! First, there were a whole bunch of round tanks with neat fish, one filled with anchovies. There were some crabs, and an eel and some pencil fish. Then we went up a floor to the tunnels!!! First was the shallow water tunnel, and there were a whole bunch of starfish, rockfish and a REALLY HUGE FISH that was like 7 feet long! Then we went into the deeper water tunnel and there were sturgeon and sharks and rays! It was so cool, they were swimming all around you and we got to see the sharks get fed. It was neato. Then we went down a floor to the touch tanks and got to feel rays, baby tiger sharks, starfish and sea cucumbers. Sea cucumbers are really gross and squishier than anything squishy you could imagine. So the aquarium was really fun! After the aquarium we got some ice cream cones and enjoyed the view of the bay! We wanted to take a trolley to go up to Lombard Street... which is a big street that goes downhill and back and forth and back and forth and basically makes a huge zig-zag. We went to the trolley station and the wait/price was a bit ridiculous so we bit the bullet and decided to walk up the near vertical six blocks to Lombard street. WE ALMOST DIED. But the view was BEAUTIFUL!!!! We walked down Lombard, watching all the brave drivers taking a try at the vehicular playground. After that, we came back to the hotel to relax, and Mike and I conked out for a few hours. We woke back up around six and went to have dinner. Mom and I had delicious salmon and Mike and Dad had Tequila chicken, which apparently was delicious with the fresh salsa. We had our little tour briefing where we were introduced to Peter, the tour guide and now (well they just got back as I was typing) Mike and Dad went to celebrate Mike's 21st and shared a beer. Mom and I are watching awesome time lapse video on the local tv channel. So I'm going to sign off and say goodnight!
I've made a Flickr account for you to see all the other pictures I didn't post:

Day One and a half

Well, hi there everyone! Here's to the Baldwin family trip to California.

First I'd like to say... HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO MICHAEL! He is now... drumroll please... the big twenty one. Martini's in the morning right?

Right now I am sitting in the Holiday Inn in San Francisco while everyone is getting ready for the day. Yesterday (the 23rd) was our day of travel, and boy oh boy did we travel. Our first flight was at 4pm or so, and that was a direct flight to Las Vegas! It was a fun, but long, flight with some great neighbors. We were sitting next to the principal of Hampton Bays middle school and three of his teacher friends who were going on a vacation to L.V. By the last hour of the flight, they were already gambling on which flight attendent would walk by first. Let's just say... "TEAM BOBBI!" So we landed at L.V. and mom was drawn to the slot machines, but she held back... and we got some stomboli from sbarro's. that was good and oily and before we knew it we were on an eight o'clock (pacific time) flight to Oakland. That was only an hour and a half, and it was already 11:00 at Long Island time, so we were verrrryyyyy tired. I had two glasses of coke and Michael had two cups of coffee, but it didn't really help. Although, a very fun taxi driver who reminded me a lot of Borat ("veddy nice") kept us awake so we could see the great skylines of San Francisco. So we got to the Holiday Inn, and the rest is a good night's sleep. Today we have checkout from here at 11, I believe, and then we check in to the Hilton around 3 and then our whole tour begins, we have a welcoming dinner tonight and I shall report back soon.