Sunday, October 5, 2014

San Francisco 2

I was talking about my California trip before the protests in Hong Kong derailed my train of thought.

Back in San Francisco, I don’t think I was the best roommate for the other 3 girls on this trip. They wanted to spend most of the day shopping and most of the night clubbing. I have little to no interest in either activity. We had limited time in the city, and I wanted to explore what little of it I could. Shopping malls tell you almost nothing about a place and you can’t see anything in dark and noisy clubs.

When I suggested we all go to the sea lion colony at Pier 39, they thought I was crazy. I thought it would be interesting to see hundreds of sea lions living side by side with humans in peace only a few minutes from our hotel. They thought buying more clothes was a better idea.

When I wanted to go to Alcatraz, they could not understand why anyone would want to see an old dirty prison – especially when you have to get on a boat to get there. The department stores at Union Square were an easy cable car ride away, and our hotel was right next to one of the cable car terminals.

In the end, I never went to Alcatraz because I wanted to explore the city and Alcatraz is more of a museum than anything else. It shows a unique historical perspective, but going there would have told me nothing about what it’s like to live in San Francisco.

Something I knew I would always be doing alone was taking an early morning walk or bike ride along the marina. The weather was great while we were there and it was nice to take a morning walk in the brisk morning air. The morning fog over the bay only made it more beautiful. Since I’m from Minnesota, I think mornings are supposed to be colder than the rest of the day. You don’t get that in Hong Kong. At 6 am it’s already hotter than it needs to be.

My roommates were not exactly morning people. Since they stayed out late at night drinking and doing who knows what, I was the only one who woke up before noon. Being alone in the morning is something I’m very used to since I seem to always surround myself with night owls.

When they wanted to go to the beach, I decided I should probably go along just for the sake of harmony. I thought lying out on the beach was a waste of time, especially since there was so much we were never going to see, but this was only the beginning of the trip and I did not want our differences to make the rest of the trip uncomfortable.

We all brought bathing suits with us, for some reason. My 2 Canadian roommates were determined to get some sun since we were in California. Hong Kong is not exactly the best place in the world for sunbathing. I brought a bathing suit because I assumed – or hoped – that at least one of the hotels would have a nice clean swimming pool. I never get to swim in Hong Kong, so if I’m going somewhere that has a pool without Chinese people using it as a toilet, I’m in.

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