Sunday, March 29, 2009

Aren't Foreign Beer Commercials Fun?

For a little Sunday am giggle......from me to you...

Friday, March 27, 2009

California, Here We Come (Part 7)

Monday, March 23rd (cont)

Well...did you guess the hotel? I didn't either, to be honest...until Steve told us. The Ritz-Carlton Half Moon Bay.

Holy Shit!!!!! You go Steve!



Do you see those 4 rooms that have balconies, on the upper floors. Two of those were ours. Craziness!!!

Here is the view from the room.



Sunset from the hotel grounds.








The locker rooms were insane. Once you wind your way through the catacombs of the women's locker room...it leads you here. A co-ed hot tub room. Pretty shwanky. :-)



After we wandered around the hotel, checking it all out....we headed back into town for dinner. Cameron's Inn, English Pub & Inn.







From there, we went back to the hotel for bed. Mot and I had the fireplace going and the door open. Nothing like a room flickering with fire light and the sounds of the ocean to make for a good nights rest. :-)

Tuesday, March 24th

The next morning we did some shopping in the hotel store and then checked out and were on our way. We stopped at a beach along the way, and enjoyed the surf. Mot took his shoes off and sank his toes in the sand..while I got sand in my sandals. (and didn't mind one bit!)











The drive to the airport was much shorter than any of us anticipated...so we pulled up a rolling footstool, and played cards at the airport.



The trip home was pretty standard. Danny and I sprung for directv programming, and watching Cash Cab for the first half of the flight to Denver. They always have some characters on that show...but the episode we watched went above and beyond in the strange people department!!!

Well.....that's it, our vacation in a "nutshell" so to speak. I'm going to start working on loading all the pics (yes, all - I took well over 400...aren't you glad I parred them down for the blog?) on my Webshots page. I'll let you know when they are up and running. :-)

Nej, out.

California, Here We Come (Part 6)

Monday, March 23rd (cont)

From Napa, we headed in the direction of our next hotel. Mot and I had no clue what it was.....Steve and Danny were keeping it a secret. We love surprises, so neither of us had an issue with not knowing. :-)

We stopped at an overlook along the way, the check out the magnificent views of the Golden Gate bridge. Holy crap!!! Again....it's just so much more when you see it in person!!!!!!





And, as par for the weekend...it was windier than hell!!!



Along the path to the overlook, you walk past the Battery Spencer.









We then drove to a place where you can get out and walk under the bridge....to see the view from the other side of the bridge.



The view was good...but the view while under the bridge was by far cooler. Hearing all the vehicles speeding by right over your head...crazy!!!

From the bridge, we drove along the coast.



What a beautiful drive!!!!!!

Mot and I still had no idea where we were staying. As we drove along the coast, the excitement was gathering. Eventually we drove up to this building.

Any guesses at where we stayed?????




(to be cont) :-)


I'll have all the pics from our trip posted on my Webshots page once I'm done with the blogging. I'll post a link when they are up and ready.

California, Here We Come (Part 5)

Monday, March 23rd

Mot, Steve and I loaded into the Jeep to go find breakfast. Napa has no fast food....well, no where that serves breakfast at least. :-)

We were trying to waste time until our spa appointments at 10 am. This place was amazing!!!! Everything you could possibly want and need in the locker rooms. Top of the line luxury. My masseuse was Galia. She was wonderful!!!!

After our spa appointments, the four of us loaded up the Jeep and headed out into the Napa Valley.





First stop, Cline Wineries. We met an employee at Safeway the night before, and she told us all about the place. We're glad she did. The people working there when we arrived we just as nice! And the wine was wonderful.





Between the four of us, we picked up 4 bottles of wine, and a box to put them in....for airport checked baggage.

(we got the box that would hold 12 bottles - didn't want to restrict ourselves) :-)

After Cline, we headed to Sonoma for a food and wine pairing reservation we'd made at the Mayo wineries. 8 different wines, with 8 different foods. Crazy good!!





We bought two bottles there. :-)



Here is a pic of the second round of pairings...with the bolder (bigger :-) red wines. Absolutely good to the last drop.....er, lick.....



From there, we stopped at an Olive Oil tasting.





Surprisingly enough, Mot and I didn't buy any. But Danny and Steve did.

The food at the pairing was great...but there just wasn't much of it....and after the tasting, I was feeling a bit...well....toasty. And the boys were still hungry. Danny spotted a nice little Mexican place along the highway, so we stopped.







As we were sitting on the front patio....locals were pulling up for lunch. They were hesitating in the parking lot...debating on whether they should come in with us there. It was a little...strange...but the tacos were wonderful!!!!!!!

(to be cont)



I will post all of the pictures from our trip on my Webshots page....as soon as I'm done posting blog entries. I'll put up a link when they are ready.

California, Here We Come (Part 4)

Sunday, March 22 (cont)

When we got back from Alcatraz, we went back to the hotel, and checked out. We headed across the Bay Bridge towards our next destination.



Berkley - Mot was on a mission for tie dye. The real stuff. :-)

We stopped at Nations for lunch, and to charge my camera battery. Dummy me forgot to plug in it the night before...and it was nearly dead. They were the best burgers I've had in quite a while.



Oh, and we all had to get some pie too.

They had to roll me out to the Jeep. :-)

We found Mot's tie dye after some serious looking. I also found a store that made me think of Sheila. It's called Lhasa Karnak Herb Company. Bottles of herbs and extracts as far as the eye could see. :-)




(Campus housing)

With tie dye in hands, and bellies full...we headed for our next hotel...in Napa. We didn't arrive until after 5:30 on Sunday, so most (all) of the wineries were closed down. We went to a Safeway in town, picked up some wine and munchies for dinner, and headed to the hotel.



We lost Mot at some point....he was in the lobby talking to a fellow fireman from L.A. So, Steve, Danny and I started munching without him....while watching Last Holiday, and then Amazing Race. :-)



Once we finished watching TV, we changed into our suits, our pitcher of wine (Mot talked the hotel restaurant out of a plastic pitcher, since glass isn't allowed on the hot tub and pool deck) and headed out into the courtyard...and the hot tub.



Mot took a polar plunge in the pool next to the hot tub...but I missed the photo op. :-(



The wind was crazy....and cold. Look at the steam coming off of Danny as we were running inside. :-)

Once back inside, and dried off....we broke out the cards for a little Progressive (International) Rummy...then headed to bed.



(to be cont)


I will have all the pics posted of our trip on my webshots page....as soon as I get done blogging. I'll post a link when it's ready to go.

California, Here We Come (Part 3)

Sunday, March 22

We met at the cafe across the street for breakfast again Sunday morning. Why mess with a good thing? The place was really good. Danny and Mot decided to try out those world famous waffles, while Steve and I went with the steak and eggs. (It's what I had the day before...again, why mess with a good thing?) :-)

Our breakfast conversation was pretty much dominated by the discussion of foreign travelers in San Francisco. More specifically, how they outnumbered the American tourists by quite a bit.

The conversation then moved on to the proper way you are to hold your fork...depending on where you're from. Mot watches allot of food network, and such....but he's never noticed the upside down fork usage. Kinda cracked me up. After attempting to eat his waffles using the new method...I think he found how handy it really is. :-)

From breakfast, we headed down to the Wharf...for our Alcatraz tour booked at 9:30 am. Danny wanted to stop off at Walgreens...although, to this day, no one is really sure why. We purchased nothing...but we did have fun in the hat aisle.



Try as I might I couldn't get them to buy the damn hats. There were three hats, with matching hair color for the three boys. Darn it...why didn't I just buy them anyway??? :-) Live and Learn.

We reached the loading area for the Alcatraz tour a few minutes early....just in time to get rained on. Luckily we all had our necessary hats and rain gear. Man, it was a cold rain.....and windier than heck out. :-)





The boat ride to the island was possibly the coldest thing I've ever experienced. Of course Mot and I couldn't ride out there inside the boat. Noooo....we had to stand on the upper deck....right at the front of the boat. Frostbite on my ears and hands was entirely possible. And we had to hang on to the railing to keep from falling over....the wind was blowing crazy hard. :-)











The island was amazing! Unfortunately, it's also a bird sanctuary, so most of the island is closed for nesting season. After wandering around outside, we headed into the main cell building. Holy crap! It was cool. You just can't imagine it, until you've seen it with your own eyes.



Notice the cage at the end of the wall, near the water tower. A little eerie, yes?

Each resident had their own cell, which did sort of surprise me. And the building is much smaller than I was expecting. (at least, the areas they'd let us into)





The outdoor exercise area. It was wild standing on those steps....where many residents had sat...years ago. Smoking their cigarettes...plotting escapes....and listening to the yacht club New Years' celebrations...year after year. So close to civilian life, yet so far away.



The menu of the last day Alcatraz was open. We were here on the 22nd...missed the anniversary of the day it closed by 1 day. Crazy, huh?

The trip back to the main land was much nicer. The wind had died down, and the sun had come out. Absolutely gorgeous!!!



video

(to be cont)

I will have all the pics posted of our trip on my webshots page....as soon as I get done blogging. I'll post a link when it's ready to go.