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Steveandruthstravels

San Francisco 4

UNITED KINGDOM | Sunday, 1 November 2015 | Views [145]

Up and off to Lori's Diner, just on the corner, for breakfast. Lori's is a chain, but the food is supposed to be ok, the decor is 1950s, red plastic booths, a long bar/counter and is a lot of fun; 60s and 70s music playing and there is a full size 1950s Edsel car, right there, in the diner! Pancakes and strawberries with a side (order) of bacon with orange juice and unlimited coffee. Standard diner fare and we walked out replete.

Back to our room to pack; this took ages as we had bought a few extra things including an extra suitcase, anyway all done, checked out, luggage stored by the hotel, so we were free for the rest of the day. We decided just to wander a bit, to see some of the City close by. So off to Chinatown; a lot of shops selling tourist tat, but some pretty interesting buildings, including Portsmouth Square where the US flag was first raised in SF, by the captain of USS Portsmouth! The Square is also the site of the first public school in SF. Now the square has been subsumed into Chinatown.

Down the hill into the financial district and on through to Market Street. Ruth had seen a museum from the bus on previous travels and wanted to visit, however after a long walk along Market we found the museum and it was closed. Plan B? We walked on past City Hall, a very impressive building, together with the United Nations Plaza, and the California State House, formed a large area of open squares and gardens and large 'imperial' - looking buildings, very grand. We found a little cafe for a sandwich and iced tea before moving on to Hayes Valley, a lovely neighbourhood, with very nice shops and a square. To one side of the square was the Smitten Ice Cream Parlour. They actually make the ice cream of your choice as you wait, using liquid nitrogen. All the same it was very good ice cream, very smooth and full of flavour.

With tired feet, we headed back to Market Street and caught the streetcar back to downtown - it's only a dollar for us older folk. Ruth wanted more photographs of the streetcars; they are all different colours, so we hung around for a while streetcar watching. The streetcars come from several different cities and all have been beautifully restored. Now time was pressing, we had to get back to the hotel to get ready for our car to the airport, so we climbed Powell and made it to our hotel in good time to get changed, have a beer and be ready for the car.

Off to the airport, through security which fortunately was very quiet and now settled comfortably in the BA lounge.

So, San Francisco, well we enjoyed the city, lots of buildings in what might be called an American Imperial style, often brick built, with a lot of decoration. We did notice a lot of 'street' people which was quite disturbing. We loved the neighbourhood areas we visited and people generally were very friendly and helpful - I guess due to our accents, often asking us where we were from. The neighbourhoods tended to be just two storied buildings, many dating back to the earthquake, and seem before that. The weather was very kind to us and even when the sea mist rolled in, it didn't stay long and it was soon sunny again.

We'll we thought we were headed for London but it seems we have a problem. Apparently the fuel system sensors are not working as they should, so at the moment of writing, it's not looking good. We are an hour and a half after scheduled takeoff time and we're still here. It's not all bad, we've moved on to the vintage champagne! So the bad news, the flight is cancelled....what happens next?

Well we de-planed, on the understanding there would be BA staff to help us find accommodation for the night and transport to it. The luggage carousel was devoid of anyone to help, BA or otherwise, so while I was looking around for someone to help, Ruth googled and found the Kensington Park Hotel, back in town. We got a taxi land off we went, eventually arriving at 1 in the morning, checked in and crashed.

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