San Francisco: Day One

Yesterday we landed in San Francisco after a six and a half hour flight.  The lady in the seat next to us said, in a rather thick jersey accent, as we were getting off the plane, “Next time, I’m taking a Xanax and two shots of tequila.”  We found our way out of the airport and took a taxi to the hotel.  I know this is going to sound lame, but it was my first time taking a taxi, so I was kind of intrigued by the whole experience.  It was like getting in a strangers car and paying him a lot of money to drive you around…actually that’s exactly what it’s like.

Last night we visited the Golden Gate Bridge and walked the whole 3.4 miles (both ways).  It was beautiful, and a little bit windy.  When we were taking the MUNI (San Francisco’s public transportation) to the Golden Gate Bridge, five different people were like “are you going to the Golden Gate Bridge?” and then they would give us directions or tell us what to do.

One thing I did learn was that the Golden Gate Bridge is not named after the color of it.  I always thought they called it the Golden Gate Bridge because they thought the bridge itself was a golden color, even though it’s like a brick red/orange.  Actually, before the bridge was built, they called the mountains around the bay the “Golden Gate.”  So when they built the bridge, it was the Golden Gate Bridge because it was the bridge that ran through Golden Gate…not as magical as you’d think.

I also heard the Golden Gate Bridge is a suspension bridge, so it should sway with the wind and traffic…apparently it makes it last longer or something.  I didn’t feel it move as I walked, but apparently it was.

Check out some pictures I took below!

If you ever get a chance to go to the Golden Gate Bridge, definitely walk across it.  One of our little helpers on the MUNI actually told us not to walk it because it was rush hour.  But don’t take her advice, it’s almost liberating standing in the center of the bridge and looking out into San Francisco Bay.  AND I’m not ashamed to admit that I sang the theme to Full House and danced a little bit whilst walking the bridge…I mean, when in Rome, right?

Another helpful hint when coming to San Francisco is that it’s actually colder than you’d think.   Back in Boston, I’m used to the frigid weather and I always associate California with being warm all the time.  I brought a light sweatshirt on the off chance it could get chilly on the plane, and I’ve worn it all around town. I have taken it off; it’s not always cold and it isn’t freezing, but it’s not as hot as you might think it would be.

We asked one of the ladies how she knew we were tourists and she simply said “you’re wearing shorts.”  Apparently June is not a shorts wearing month for Californians (it’s around the 60s, temperature wise), but for people from Boston, which is basically the arctic, 60s is warm/hot.  So, if you don’t want to be pegged as a tourist, make sure you pack some jeans.