Day 4: as the sun sinks low, the darkness finds its way

2 Moose on the Loose California Making friends San francisco Still stranded travel YOLO

Another sunny day! Justin was off to the conference and I got up pretty much around the same time. Today’s plan involved a lot of walking so I wanted to make sure to get everything in.

I set my direction the exact opposite way of my final destination because I *needed* a sushi burrito. That’s right, a burrito of sushi. The wrap is nori and rice but the inside is various sushi ingredients and you eat it like a burrito. It was glorious. I got overwhelmed at the place with all the amazing food on the menu so I also ordered sushi nachos - rice tortilla chips with melted cheese, a spicy aioli, green onions, nori strips, guacamole, and a ridiculous amount of tuna. I took my order and went around the corner go eat by a gorgeous water fountain listening to the water. It was SOO good but it was too much food and so I saved the burrito for later.

With burrito in hand, I set foot towards my first destination. Little did I realize that the path I took was 80% UPHILL. 

I looked for any excuse to stop along the way from coffee to pictures to mapping out my course, to sitting in a stunning park and watching 20 pooches play. Speaking of this park, earlier in the day I wanted to hit up the Telegraph Hill that’s known for being the home of 300 parrots. Started with 2 escapees long ago and they just kept reproducing. I did, however, read that in the last few years they’re pretty hard to spot so I didn’t go out of my way.

So here I am in this stunning green park when I hear squawking and look up to see about 50 parrots fly directly above me. They moved too quickly for my to pull out my phone but it was a pretty special moment for me. I hugged my burrito and latte and carried on.

I came across the Tobin House, literally half a house. An architect built it for his daughter and it was supposed to have a mirror image second house for his other daughter that would’ve completed the look, but the second daughter was a bit of a brat and was all “no thanks, Dad” and so it never got completed. And now the house stands all awkwardly with its half arch interrupted by a wall.

I kept walking and finally made it to the Presidio Park boundary line. I was at the top of the hill looking down at the coast and the Golden Gate Bridge. Absolutely beautiful but I had no idea where the Wood Line was. There was a woman just finishing up with a fitness trainer and when I asked where it is (I didn’t want to go down the huge hill only to have to come back up), she said she was going that way and walked with me. It’s a good thing she didn’t terrify me about all the coyote warnings in the woods and the mountain lion that was recently spotted. She waited a while before adding that the lion was captured.

The Wood Line was a zig zag path through the forest of big tall trees. I had some fun with photos there and then took the parallel “Lover’s Lane” path back up. I found a horizontal tree trunk so I took a few photos eating half a burrito. I really know how to amuse myself. Grabbing the second half and decided to save it for later, I started making my way towards the Golden Gate Park - the equivalent to New York’s Central Park.

I can’t get over the architecture and how cool the streets and housing is! I took a lot of pics and finally made it to the park. I decided it would be fun to do a ridiculous collection of photos of me eating the burrito in the most random places because we kept discussing the burrito in a group chat. Unfortunately I accidentally ate the whole thing during my first shot and then I was sad. I sat on the lushest green grass listening to some guy playing bongos before I finally got up and went to check out the conservatory of flowers. Some really cool looking flowers in there! But by the time I came out it was starting to get dark and I really wanted to make it to the Bison Paddock. Turned out it was another 45 min walk and I definitely wouldn’t make it in time. So I asked 2 fine gentlemen that were packing up their car if they were going in that direction. They said yes and told me to hop in beside their puppies. The ride there was longer than I anticipated and by the time I reached the paddock, it was dark and I couldn’t see the bison. Before getting out of the car, the guys made me promise I won’t walk back and that I’ll call an Uber because once the sun goes down, the homeless come out and it can be a scary place. Great. Starting to feel a bit eerie as I noticed how dark it was and started hearing the not-ideal crowd of people coming out and yelling, I went to order an Uber when my phone died before confirmation. Perfect. I found the only source of light at an intersection and stood by it with my thumb up. I felt safer hitchhiking than walking and I was overjoyed when I saw a tour bus coming (after a good 30 cars ignored me!). He let me on and took me to his last stop at the academy of science in the middle of the park. He sat with me while I charged my phone on his bus and waited until an Uber came.

It was perfect timing as I met the boys for a few well earned wrap up drinks at the conference and made our way to a fancy sushi place. The fish was... wow. Talk about melt in your mouth - we had Bluefin Tuna... the best quality sashimi fish you can possibly get. After selling both our kidneys for this meal, we hit up a microbrewery for a drink and made our way back home for just half past midnight.

All in all, I walking about 16km today, not too shabby, especially considering it was more than half UPHILL. 

I learned a lot today. I’m thankful for the experience but I think I’m going to stick to not having to do that again and being a little smarter in the future.

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