Saturday June 1st 2013
Did I tell you that we had pizza for dinner after arriving at our Travelodge in San Rafael. Missy M works part time for one of the pizza outlets nearby. We only wanted a medium as we were not really hungry but knew we must eat. We were presented with the biggest pizza either of us had ever had, one slice each was enough but cold pizza in the middle of the night and again for breakfast late morning was still not going to make a dent in it.
Missy M and Mr T picked us up early afternoon, we had intended to go to the airport to collect our hire car but neither of us were strong enough to drive yet. Missy M took us up to ‘The Heights’ where we had a great view of the Golden Gate Bridge and the bay beyond. Apparently we were lucky as we had such a clear view of the bridge. Very often it is shrouded in mist or at least the top of it is. (During our time there we crossed that bridge 7 times and it was clear for 6 of those 7 times).
I did wonder why it is called the Golden Gate Bridge when it so clearly isn’t anything like golden in colour. Mr T informed us that it is called the Golden Gate Bridge because it was the gateway to the gold mining area to the north following the California gold rush. How true this is I have yet to check but it seems plausible to me. Once we had taken all the photos we wanted we set off again into San Francisco.
Once parked in the Fishermans Wharf area we hurried to the nearest clothing stall to buy hoodies to keep us warm once the temperatures took a dive. I really can’t believe that Owl voluntarily became a hoody wearer. I got one too, so did Missy M. We had intended to have either a late lunch or an early dinner but time was running out on us. We walked as fast as we could considering that Owl was still a bit shaky after yesterday. We decided to get a quick snack to keep us going and have dinner later. Boudin’s on Fishermans Wharf was our chosen destination for our snack. We found a table outside where we could people watch. Do you know how many people stop to take each other’s photo stood under the Fishermans Wharf sign on the corner of the street.
Time was getting away from us so we finished our food as quickly as we could and set off to find a taxi cab. Hey that was not as easy as we had expected. We had walked several blocks before we managed to flag one down that was not already in use. The four of us piled in, the taxi turned the corner and 100m down the road joined the stationary traffic waiting to turn into The Embarcadero. Anxiously we kept an eye on the time, we knew we were cutting it fine. If we had all been fitter we would have got out and walked/run.
We heave a collective sigh of relief when at last the taxi slides to a halt opposite our destination. We take advantage of the stopped traffic to cross 6 lanes to pier 33. With just a couple of minutes to spare we joined the queue for the ferry. We were on our way to fulfil one of Owl’s greatest wish list events. I am sure you all know about Alcatraz, well that is where we were going.
It was a lovely sunny early evening, I took some lovely photos of the island as we circled around it. Once again Owl’s physical state was to our benefit (well mine and his that is). On arrival on the island those of us who were less mobile could take a tram ride up to the prison building instead of the steep walk that everyone else had to make. It was here that Mr T began to try his father and sister’s patience. It didn’t bother me at all but his biological family found his constant disappearances somewhat trying. Mr T is very passionate about creating films and is constantly on the look out for locations and ideas for his films. We all collected our audio guides and set off following the route around the prison. We all started together but gradually began to take our own time going round. I continued to take copious amounts of photos (both family and location). Many of the photos of Missy M show her with her phone in her hand which we found amusing. We caught up with Mr T several times before he scooted off again. We were beginning to panic when there was no sign of him when we were heading back to the ferry for our trip back to mainland.
By the time we returned to terra firma it was dark and getting late, Owl and I waited by the side of the road whilst his children (my step children) went off to collect Missy M’s car. Arriving back at the hotel the pair of us just about had the energy to eat half a slice of pizza before falling into bed.
It was lovely spending the time we did with the two young people who I am still getting used to as my step children.