Anyway, we got up early one fine, ridiculously foggy morning to go pick up our Zipcar to go pick her up from the airport. Let me just insert here that the Zipcar we reserved was somewhat unusual - usually, the cars are in parking garages or lots, and there are usually at least two in each location. Yeah, this one was in someone's garage. A private garage. As in, you walk up to it, have to undo the combination lock and lift up the garage door, get in the car, back out, get back out of the car, close the door, relock the door and then get back in the car and drive away. Strange, to say the least.
So, back to it being really foggy - we had to cross the Bay Bridge to get there (obviously) and it was so foggy that we couldn't even see the bridge towers until we were directly underneath them. I've never seen anything like it. We came to learn the next day that I wasn't the only one who thought so, as a container ship ran into one of the columns supporting the bridge and spilled 50,000+ gallons of oil into the San Francisco Bay. Nice. So we picked Dana up from the airport, we went back to Berkeley, I went to one meeting for an hour and then we got the heck out of town to go up to Napa. Of course. Where else would we take someone who was visiting for 2 days?? (San Francisco? Psssh.) We went to a couple of vineyards we really enjoy, and then we went to quite the snooty new place, which specialized in sparkling wine. Not really a winner in terms of what we drank, but we tried a really great Brie, which we remember more than the wine, and the place itself was gorgeous. We tried to give Dana the overall range from really casual places to snooterific wineries, while also seeing some of the scenery. Hopefully we accomplished our goal. She seemed to have a good time, but hey, it could have been all the wine, so who knows.
Snooty winery - Domaine Carneros
The next day, we got up and took our sweet time getting into the city - seriously, it was midafternoon by the time we got there. Ah well. We headed downtown and ended up hopping on the a cable car (because who loves cable cars? Thats right. Me.) and taking it all the way to Lombard Street, which is a nice long ride (nice for the $5 fare). Lots of the obligatory Lombard Street photos, and then we headed down to Ghiradelli Square to see it, and to get some nice views of the Golden Gate Bridge. We had planned on walking out on the pier to see it, but it was closed due to the oil spill, which we hadn't heard about until then. Awkward. Not so cute to see all the sand and rocks covered with a nice skim of oil. Anyway, we walked from Ghiradelli Square up into Fort Mason and then caught a bus back downtown to see the "Painted Ladies" which is a row of very well restored, painted Victorian homes. You may remember them from the opening credits of Full House. Basically the entire way, Dana proceeded to sing the theme song from the show and loudly proclaim her love for the Tanner family and telling us that she thinks that deep down, she in fact is a Tanner. This, my friends, is why I love her. We got to the park and we took many a photo of Dana (and some embarassing video that I will not post here, but will show you upon request) prancing around in front of the homes.
That night, we got back into Bizzerkeley and had to run up to Clark Kerr (which is a little satellite campus of residence halls) because my RAs were putting on a huge program called "Fit For a Queen." Basically, it's a drag show. (Yes, paid for with university money. I love working here!) This is the fifth year in a row that it has been put on, and we hire professional queens from SF to come in, do a bunch of musical numbers and then do a Q&A session, which is fantastic for the students, most of whom are like "What do you mean that's a man?!?!?" Except this year, we also had one queen who is a woman (a "faux queen") and she was SO good. All of them were amazing actually. We had hundreds of students come and the ladies loved Dan - all in all a really good program.
The next morning, we had to take Dana back to the airport - quite the quick visit, I know. But, it was lovely to see her. AND the cats loved her to pieces. Clearly, a good sign.
Posts coming soon: chocolate factory tour, 2008 resolutions, holidays in DC!!!!!