Thursday, January 12, 2012


Thursday October 9th 2003, My wife of 5 days and I finally headed out for our honeymoon. We had decided on San Francisco because I had been there a number of times and at this point I don't think she had. I don't think she had ever been on the West Coast at this time. So we found a great deal on a hotel on Fisherman's Wharf called the Argonaut, at the time was still a fairly new hotel. We also had our trip planned out so we were ready to take San Fran by storm and we were not disappointed.

We ended up getting to San Fran about 10am their time. We had paid extra for transport to and from the airport so we had one less thing to worry about. We got to the hotel in good time, but of course they were not ready for us. I think check in was like 3pm. So we left our bags and decided to explore. We discovered to our amazement that The Argonaut was right next to Ghiardelli Square one of the tourist sites in San Fran. We explored that for a bit, then walked down to the wharf. Glorious sunny blue sky weather permeated as we stopped in to get something to eat. While eating we heard to loud booms. We went outside to see what happened and learned that we had arrived during fleet week. The time when the US NAVY visits a city. There was a parade scheduled on Sunday and the Blue Angels were practicing over San Fran Bay that was what made the boom. As we say that there we were trying to decide what to do. We didn't want to overdo anything that day so we decided to go to Alcatraz for a tour. That was pretty interesting as well. Afterwards we did a little shopping around the wharf then headed back to the hotel.

They offered us a choice a room. A view of Alcatraz or a view of the Golden Gate Bridge. Since Alcatraz is a jail we decided on the bridge. We got to our room and you could see the bridge, but we were also facing Ghiardelli Square. We took a nap and then headed out for dinner.

The next day was Friday and we did our first real touristy thing. We took a double decker bus tour of the San Fran area. We got a chance to see everything San Fran had to offer. Afterwards I think we did more shopping and walking around and just enjoying the second straight day of Beautiful weather. I think that night we actually watched a movie on their pay per view which had just come out that summer. It was either Finding Nemo or Pirates of the Carribbean. We watched both during our trip though I can't remember what day we watched each of them.  Went to bed early because Saturday was going to be a big day.

Saturday was a trip to Monterray and Carmel. A bus tour to these close by cities with stops at Pebble Beach, the Joshua Tree and more. A very fun and pleasant trip. Though we did not get a chance to really look around Carmel since we stopped there for dinner and it was the world's slowest restaurant.  We got to see the Monterray Aquarium and did more shopping as well.  Very good bus driver who entertained us and our fellow tourists on the trip. I think we also stopped at a Chinese Garden as well.

Sunday morning we were surprised by breakfast from friends back home. We decided it was going to be a lazy day. So we watched football most of the day, since the 1pm games start at 10am and the 4pm games start at 1pm. I think we left the room to go to the Navy Parade which was going right past our hotel then we were able to go back in and watch the 8pm game at 5pm. By the time the game was over we were eating at the Argonaut's restaurant and just relaxing.

Monday was our Winery trip. We checked out 3 wineries. 2 in Napa and 1 in Sonoma. All were different. One was a typical winery, one was an organic winery which was ok, not very interesting looking, and the Sonoma one was a glorious throwback to an Italian style winery with peacock's walking around and beautiful scenary.

Tuesday was our last day. We had a red-eye flight out so we had a day to kill. We decided to explore San Fran on our own. Ride the cable cars, go to Chinatown (which to be honest is not very impressive). We also hooked up with some friends who were on a two week honeymoon and they just arrived in San Fran. We had dinner with them then dessert at Ghiardelli Square. Then we were heading home.

The flight back was rough. I couldn't sleep well, we had lots of turbulence and we had to do a stop at Pittsburgh at 6am when high winds were hitting the East Coast. Tired, Jet lagged. It was rough. The descent to Baltimore was just as tough. But we got home and I had decided earlier I was taking the rest of the week off. So I did to recover. All in all one of the best trips I have ever been on. Wish I had some pictures I could post on here but they are at home in solid form.

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