Monday morning ramblings

I’m in a rambling mood today, sorta so just ignore me while I ramble away…

So here’s the story about last weekend at the grocery store. A staff was loading up the shelves. He had boxes and a cart along one side of the aisle. I was walking past to get to the other end of the aisle when two bottles of sauce (looked like mayo) fell off his cart, crashed onto the floor and some of it splattered onto my clothes, face and hair. I got a new look instantly. A mayo makeover, if you will…

… and last night, did anyone see the super moon? We got pretty excited about it earlier in the evening but when 7:00pm rolled around, we were getting ready to sit down for dinner, so we figured, forget it, growling tummies get first priority, we can always catch the super moon on live feed later. Well, it wouldn’t be live any more but …

… yeah, so scientists found water on Mars, liquid water that flows on the surface of the planet in spring and summer, a sure sign of life, but then they determined that water to be too cold for anything on Earth to survive in. Agreed, Earthlings may not be able to survive on Mars, but that doesn’t mean no other life forms can. For the most part, humans are so self-centered they think they’re the only ones inhabiting the universe. I’m pretty sure there’s no shortage of aliens checking us out too *waves back*. There IS definitely life on other planets, the Buddha said so 2,600 years ago, and I believe that. Just because we can’t see them in the pictures that space probes beam back doesn’t mean that they don’t exist…

… and in other news, I have just eaten half a grapefruit the size of a personal watermelon, and it was the juiciest thing ever, a far cry from the slightly bigger than an orange-sized ones that I have to squeeze to death for every last drop of juice that it’s worth. I guess it helps to have the world’s orchards in your backyard, eh! I’ve got a 10lb bag of these delicious babies in the fridge, gonna take my time to work through them.

Okay, that’s all the rambling from me today. Have a great one, folks!

The Golden Gate Bridge is what?

The Golden Gate Bridge is what?

From Lombard Street, we headed to the Golden Gate Bridge. The plan was to walk the bridge seeing as it was such good weather. Well, trust us to pick a day when the Golden Gate Bridge was completely closed to traffic for maintenance for the first time in 77 years!! Man oh man! Okay, no problem, we know a place where we can still get a great view of the bridge but first, we had to find a restroom… bad!

Well, if you’re looking for a restroom, the Palace of Fine Arts isn’t the place!! We took a detour there thinking surely a touristy place like that would have at least some one restroom? No. There are undoubtedly restrooms inside the convention hall behind it but that’s closed most of the time unless there’s an event.

If you’ve ever gone restroom-hunting on a desperately full bladder, you know it isn’t funny! The closest thing we found was an IHOP a couple of blocks down. Since their restroom is for customers only, we ended up eating brunch there with the intention of having lunch in Chinatown later. Up till now, we’ve never had reason to go to IHOP – I make my own pancakes. So naturally we didn’t order pancakes but these instead…

I hop away

They were nothing special but that’s the price you pay for using their restroom! Not once, but twice each to make it worth our money, hahah! The crazy things we do!

We picked a fine day to go to the recreation area near the Golden Gate Bridge. It was swarming with half the city out running, bicycling, walking their dogs, kids and surfboards on a Sunday! Driving was madness. There were people everywhere but we found a parking spot easily enough, right next to some guy who was getting geared up to go paddle boarding with his dog. In the freezing waters of the Pacific Ocean? Wow!!

Golden Gate Brdige

Zigzagging down Lombard St.

Zigzagging down Lombard St.

Like I said, the streets of San Francisco make one heckuva fun ride. We were all set. First stop, Lombard Street, the crookedest street in the world. This time, I parked at the top and we walked down these stairs.

sf154

No matter how many times I’ve been here, the feeling is always the same. I’m completely knocked off my feet by the beauty of the homes on both sides of this street. They have a quaintness all of their own. I’m sure they must look like a page off a decor magazine inside. What makes them even more mysterious is that I’ve never seen anyone go in or out. It’d be interesting to see who lives here.

Living on such a winding slope of a street must be quite something. I can’t imagine reversing in and out of the garage. But if you live here long enough, I guess you will eventually get the hang of it but surely it must be a bit of a daily adventure. See those little green dots I’ve marked on the hedges to show how the street zigzags its way downhill.

Lombard St

When we got to the bottom of Lombard Street, we climbed back up the stairs, got into our car, and I did something I’ve never done before! I freakin’ drove down Lombard Street!! This is a first for me and I gotta say maneuvering those bends and screaming all the way down was quite a thrill! I wonder why I never thought to do it before. By the time we got to the bottom, Hip2bDaughters were lamenting that the ride was too short! Let’s start over. Sure, let’s do it again next time, why not? it was fun!

The streets of San Francisco

The streets of San Francisco

After spending a half day in San Jose walking around Japantown, and checking out the Japanese shops and restaurants, and a Buddhist temple, we hoarded a stash of Japanese pastries and sushi. It’s a shame that after our In-N-Out escapade, we couldn’t fit in another lunch – there were so many Japanese restaurants there.

The next morning, we headed out to San Francisco on a cold, gray day with patchy fog (nothing like the white wall) which wasn’t so good for picture taking but good weather to be out. Okay, so you know you’re in San Francisco when the streets turn into a roller coaster. Wheeee! Up and down we went, and as if that’s not thrilling enough, many of the Stop signs are at the top of really steep inclines! which literally leaves you sitting tilted backwards as if you were in a dentist’s chair.

Tilted backwards

I was almost afraid that when I took my foot off the brake to step on the accelerator, we would inadvertently go sliding back down the incline. If I were driving a shift stick, that would be a very real possibility. Thankfully with an auto, we just went screaming as we rolled forward down the slope, hahaha!!! So much fun!

In-N-Out burger time

In-N-Out burger time

On the way to San Jose, we made a brief stop in Gilroy to grab a quick lunch. I suggested In-N-Out since Hip2bDaughters have never tried their burgers and weren’t even keen to try. A burger is a burger is a burger, Mom, they tell me. True, I wouldn’t suggest going to just any burger place myself. But you can’t live here and not have tasted In-N-Out, know what I mean?

They’ve been around since 1948, that should say something! They’re always packed. You can almost never get a table, and the drive-thru is miles long. And what’s not to love about their 1960’s theme – colors, concept, even down to the staff’s uniforms, it’s like stepping into a Grease movie!

So in we went. It was sardines inside!! There was no way we were going to get a table! So we decided to take out and even then, we got moved around quite a bit while waiting for our order. People just kept coming in the door.

In and Out

We were planning to eat our burgers on the road so as not to waste time. Seriously, I have no idea how to eat a burger while driving. I’ve never tried and I’m not sure my car would appreciate becoming a piece of red and yellow modern art. So we ended up eating in our parked car with the windows rolled down. It was a beautiful cool day!

3 burgers

I had a hamburger, the young ladies had cheeseburgers. I wish I’d ordered the cheeseburger though, it looked bigger and tastier but cost like only 30 cents more, haha! Oh well, next time! And remember to ask for their grilled onions, they’re freakin’ tasty!

burger

Now the Hip2bDaughters can say they’ve been to In-N-Out and even admit to loving their burgers, so tasty yet affordable. We’ve been back 3 times since. Looks like I’ve created monsters again!

The white wall

The white wall

I’m back! From our little vacation to the Bay Area. It was a cold, gray day when we headed out to San Jose. Mind you, this wasn’t your regular gray winter’s day, it came with thick fog. Regular fog is fine, I’m used to that. But we ran into several patches of fog so thick that visibility was like 200 feet. We’re talking complete whiteout here!!

Pretty weird!! I felt like I was driving straight into a white wall. I couldn’t see anything beyond the front of my car. That’s how bad it was! All I had were the white lines on the road to guide me. Beyond that, I couldn’t see a thing!! Not a thing! Whenever a vehicle passed by, its tail lights would disappear in a flash and then it’s back to that white wall again.

It’s a strange feeling. It’s like you want to get out of it quick. You’re hoping the wall will open up at any moment. But you can’t speed up. In fact, I slowed down so as to keep a safe distance between me and any vehicle that might just be in front of me which I couldn’t see. You wonder where everyone else is, and if they can see you. You hope they’re not speeding. And you wonder how long that wall is going to go on for. Just pretty weird!!

But by the second patch of blind fog, I was beginning to consider myself quite a pro at it. I slowed down. I kept going. And I was glad when I finally emerged from it. It’s just like they say, there’s a light at the end of the tunnel, you know there’s a clear road beyond the fog. 😀

And the three little pigs…

And the three little pigs...

… stayed home all new year weekend! Except for a quick zip to Round Table Pizza for another round of… this time, it was a the large Hawaiian pizza. 12 slices divided by 3 hungry people = 4 slices each. I think we did good. We only had 3 slices left over to take home for tea!

nyevelunch

Our first lunch of the year was grilled cheese sandwiches. Vegetarian and homemade too, I might add. No, I didn’t take any pictures. Too hungry and excited is my only excuse.

For dinner, we had party wings. Yeah, they’re organic chicken wings though you’ve probably rarely heard me use the word ‘organic’ on this blog. Well, organic is not something I do blindly just because it’s trendy. It depends on how convinced I am that organic is really organic because as you know, there are so many factors that go into qualifying a product as organic and I’d hate to be ripped off paying more for something that’s maybe not truly organic, know what I mean? 😉

Regardless, these homemade party wings were finger-lickin’ good – even the Colonel would’ve been proud, I’m sure!

nylunch1

While we were in a celebratory mood, I decided to use up the few scallops left from the big bag we snagged at Costco over Christmas and transformed them into this. Dare I imagine how much this dish would cost us at an rip-off upscale Chinese restaurant?

nylunch2

Nothing like staying warm indoors on a cold winter night. Pigging out with loved ones is an added bonus, of course. Cheers!

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