Nov 212009

Midsummer, Patti and I visited the San Francisco Bay area. We had a great time. I’ve been a bit delinquent in posting photos, but better late than never.

We drove up US 1 from Monterey to San Francisco and caught the sunset.
US 1 Sunset

The next day, we drove up to Muir Woods, a national park just over the Golden Gate Bridge.
Muir Woods
Patti and I at Muir Woods

Parts of the woods were filled with spiders; others had no wildlife whatsoever.
Spiders at Muir Woods
Patti and I at Muir Woods in a tree
Muir Woods

As we walked through the woods, we heard a knocking sound. After searching around, Patti saw this woodpecker. When we got back to the entry of the park, we used the books there to identify it as a Hairy Woodpecker.
Hairy Woodpecker at Muir Woods
Hairy Woodpecker at Muir Woods
Hairy Woodpecker at Muir Woods

Muir Woods is a vacation spot for ladybugs. These two were having a grand old time.
Ladybugs at Muir Woods
Ladybugs at Muir Woods

There was a sign less than five feed away stating, “Don’t feed the chipmunks.”
Chipmunk at Muir Woods

I used my Google phone as a GPS to map our trip with the MyTracks application. I forgot to start the app when we started our hike, we really started where the track ends.

View Muir Woods in a larger map

 Posted by at 7:26 pm
Oct 082009

A couple of weeks ago I went to San Francisco for vacation. I posted a few photos from my cell phone, but I also took my hefty, large camera. Well, not so hefty and not so large, but small enough to fit in my pocket.

We start out our vacation by walking over to Fisherman’s Wharf. Sea lions are all around the wharf, but a ton of them congregate at Pier 39. They are a lot of fun to watch, but they smell quite bad.
Pier 39
Pier 39

You can see Alcatraz from Fisherman’s Wharf. We saw neither Sean Connery nor Nicholas Cage.

After seeing the Sea Lions, my friend Patti and I walked up a long staircase to Coit Tower. Patti held the tower up.
Coit Tower

We were visiting San Francisco to see my friends Barbara and Raj get married. It was a fun wedding in Monterey, California. Congratulations Barbara and Raj!
Barbara and Raj

[More photos to come later….]

 Posted by at 1:27 am
Sep 282009

I’m in San Francisco now on vacation. I was last here a few months ago for work. The day I left, I dashed over to Lombard Street, the most twisty street in the Bay Area. While I took a taxi to Lombard Street from the hotel downtown, I walked back over two or three very large hills.
Lombard Street
Lombard Street

From the top of one of the hills, I was able to see Alcatraz in the distance.

 Posted by at 1:07 pm
Mar 072009

I returned from San Francisco last week. I’ve been to the Bay Area almost four of the past eight weeks; I’m getting to know my new coworkers at Google. While Google is based in Mountain View, I prefer to stay in San Francisco. It’s reminiscent of home.

One of the places I ate in San Francisco the first time I visited this year was Incanto, Chris Cosentino‘s shrine to offal meats. My friends and I had a fine time at his Noe Valley restaurant. This past visit I stopped by Boccalone, Cosentino’s meat shop in the San Francisco Ferry Building. I purchased a brown sugar and fennel salame. While I had some of it in San Francisco, I brought the rest of it to my friend Phil and Karen’s house. (Happy Birthday Karen!) The salame is chewy and has a strong fennel flavor. The sugar helps balance the strong flavors of the cure and fennel.

Today, I was reading Chris Cosentino’s blog post about receiving a letter from anti-foie gras folks. He and his business partner, Mark Pastore, discussed the letter, and Mark wrote a thoughtful note on the foie gras debate on the Incanto web site. It’s well written, and I agree with the gist of the letter.

If you get out to San Francisco, I recommend checking out Incanto and Boccalone. The folks that work at both restaurants are passionate about the food they make and serve, and it shines in the flavor of the food and experience of dining and shopping.

 Posted by at 11:42 pm
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