Saturday, February 09, 2008

On the Way to CHA

San Francisco Airport February 9th, 2008 12:40 pm

I’m sitting at the airport and thinking about what a great time I had visiting Amy and Eli. If they enjoyed having me even one quarter as much as I enjoyed spending time with them, then I can guarantee that they had a wonderful time! I’m also sitting here simply enjoying the people around me. Strangers all; where are they going? Is it for fun, for business to visit family? Are they happy to be taking this plane to Santa Ana/Anaheim or is this a sad time for them? How lucky I am to be getting on the plane to go and fulfil one of my life goals or is that fantasy, to attend CHA (the Craft and Hobby Association Convention). I can't wait to see all the scrapbook supplies from the world’s big and small manufacturers. I'm particularly looking forwar to visiting the bottom floor where the new companies are grouped and see what their imagination has taken the scrapbook/papercraft industry.

I’ve been blessed too by the wonderful weather that I’ve enjoyed while in San Francisco. Apparently it was rather horrible last week. This morning, as my sister-in-law, her husband and I sat on their balcony overlooking the hills and both San Francisco Bay and the Pacific, we had such wonderful warm weather that I had to put on a hat and sunscreen. I've got to tell you, it was the absolute best, warm but not hot with little or no humidity.

So life is good and that is in large part due to my wonderful husband. Yes you got it, another blessing there and a hearty thank you to the fates for allowing a woman from Quebec City and a man from Mississippi to meet, bond, marry and actually live very happily, even if I do say so myself!

As I write this still waiting for my plane, CNN is talking about the American primaries that are going on. I’m getting on one of those small puddle jumpers, you know the type that has only 3 seats across. Hopefully there will be some leg room and the flight will be uneventful. I’m not sure what I’ll do once I get to Santa Ana (John Wayne) Airport. I guess I’ll have to pay for a taxi. I was hoping for free internet here at the airport, but it wasn’t to be and I really didn’t want to put my credit card info into an unsecured wifi network in an airport!

At any rate, time is going by and it is almost time to board.

Finally arrived in Anaheim!
Oh my! As we were getting ready to land in Santa Ana’s John Wayne airport, we were told by the pilot that we would be circling as there was a broken down airplane on the commercial runway. Hmmm…OK. Nest he came on and told us that we would have to divert to LAX and that once on the ground we would be told how we would be taken to the Santa Ana airport. I am sure that I wasn’t the only one thinking that it might be a little more than an aircraft that needed to be towed back to the gate. Thank goodness, before we could make our approach to LAX we were told that we would indeed be able to land in Santa Ana as planned.

Friday, February 08, 2008

Around San Francisco

Strange things are happening at the San Francisco Zoo! There were no big cats to be seen, there were extra fences erected so that we could not get close to the actual viewing areas, and there were all sorts of signs explaining the expected behavior.

We all know that this is the result of the terrible tragedy that happened just recently. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, the fact that when agitated the tigers could get out was well known amongst the keepers. Let's just say that this is a beautiful zoo and that one can only hope that the will find a workable solution that will not keep children and adults alike from being able to enjoy watching the animals feed, sleep and play.

No matter what, the visit at the zoo was fantastic and I thoroughly enjoyed every moment. What visit to San Francisco is complete without a ride on a cable car ot a look at the Pacific.

It's been a wonderful few days and I must thank my hosts and especially the "Captain" who drove me all around town showing me the different neighborhoods and sites, and made sure that didn't get into too much trouble! I hope to make it back again with hubby in tow.

Stay tuned for my reports from Anaheim and the 2008 CHA Winter show!

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Visiting San Franciso

Oh wow! San Francisco is just beautiful and I've been lucky enough to come one of the weeks where there is little or no fog and just a little rain which came down last night. I wish hubby had come with me but maybe with a little luck he will come next trip.

The first day I went on a bus tour. Ever done those? I love taking Gray Line tours when I first get to a city. You hear about the history of the place and get an overview of the whole city. It's a neat way to find out where you might want to spend more time. The morning tour was an overview of the city. We went up to the Twin Peaks where we could see the whole of SF below.

We stopped at the Mission Dolores which was established in 1776. I walked through the church and the cemetary. The cemetary was quite surprising. It seemed that the average age of the people burried there was around 25.

Life must have been tough in those days. So many died so young!

We went around to Golden Gate Park, then saw the Presidio and went around the various neighborhoods. Real estate is really expensive in San Francisco and unlike other parts of the country, there hasn't been a downturn. The cost of homes has been going up steadily, mainly because of the lack of space left.

I'm told that even this house with its paintings is over half a million. I really enjoyed the tour of the city.

After being dropped off at Fisherman's Warf after the morning tour, I had a couple of hours to walk around there. There were lots of restaurants and a number of camera stores, galleries and the usual tourist memorabilia traps.

2pm saw me back on a bus and off to Muir Woods, a redwood forest just outside SF on the other side of the Golden Gate Bridge, which I learned is painted in "International Orange".

After winding around the countryside we arrived at the Woods and were allowed one hour and fourty five minutes. I just loved the woods with the majestic redwoods.

I'll bet that most of you didn't know that it was within these woods that the United Nations was first created! I was pretty proud of myself. Not only did I walk around for a couple of hours at lunch time, I managed to do the one hour loop in the woods in the afternoon. For someone that had a total knee replacement, it was a very good day!
Needless to say, I had a great day and truly enjoyed seeing different parts of San Francisco.