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Time to Tell You About My Trip!

Now that life has somewhat settled down and gotten back into the easy groove of my normal routine (and now that I’ve somewhat caught up on the sleep I missed out on while in San Fran), I have the sense of mind to sit down and write a half-way decent post about my trip.

Since it’s also Freebee Friday!, I will include lots and lots of pictures. 🙂

The town of Occidental

How can you NOT fall in love?

After stopping at my beloved In-N-Out, The first part of my trip was spent in Occidental (a BEAUTIFUL small town in Northern California, nestled in the hills and a short trip from Bodega Bay) at my aunt and uncle’s house. That was probably the highlight of my trip, to be honest. The area of California they live in is breathtaking, their house is gorgeous–with a Japanese theme throughout, and everything was so laidback and peaceful. The town is quaint with only a 5 square mile area and a population of around 1,200. It sprang up from the railroad that passed through back in 1876 (and of course, I have to mention the Bohemian Grove. We did try to find it, but were unsuccessful. Although, food was a more important item on my list than the secret club was).

I ran in this everyday. So beautiful.

Bodega Bay

While we were there, I went running on the old, hilly roads, realizing that I might die when I do my half marathon in April and my relay marathon in June. We took a trip to Bodega Bay (where they filmed Hitchcock’s The Birds), I scaled the bluffs with the only sensible shoes in the entire bunch (guess which ones they are), and we ate some pretty good fish and chips on the wharf. My aunt took me to winetasting at Lynmar and Iron Horse. I spent a lot of time with my grandma (who I hadn’t seen since I got married), my aunt and uncle, and my two little second cousins, who are in one word: Fantabulous!

The San Fran Bridge from the back window of the car

After a couple of days in Occidental, it was time to head to San Fran, which in itself was an adventure. It had been raining the entire time we were there (which is awesome – I love the rain, especially in a place that is in the hills, and green, with copious amounts of trees), so all the back roads into the city were flooded. But we made it.

The front of our hotel from

across the street

I felt like a movie star staying at the Mark Hopkins. Everyone was dressed in double-breasted uniforms with white gloves. They pressed the elevator buttons for you and put the napkin on your lap for you at breakfast and lunch. It was AMAZING. The staff at The Mark went above and beyond at all times. After we dropped off our luggage, the skies had cleared for a little bit so we went for a stroll through Chinatown. I bought Hubby a kimono and myself a hand-painted silk robe. The Chinese New Year was that week, so Chinatown was a buzz of activity and people. We were going to go to the parade on Sunday, but our energy petered out and we stayed in the room instead.

High Tea

Thursday afternoon we took High Tea at Top of the Mark with yummy pasteries and iced coffee and then returned that evening for a swing band in full costume and professional swing dancers. It was so much fun. I even had an older gentleman (79, but didn’t look a day over 65) teach me how to dance.

View from Top of the Mark

Friday, Saturday and half of Sunday was spent, from 7:30 AM to 11PM with classes and workshops. I was exhausted but pleasantly so, the whole time. Sunday was only a half day and ended at 1pm after Speed Dating with Agents (which was a fun experience—I’ll tell you about in another post), and I made some fast and valuable friends at the conference that I think I will keep for a long time (you know who you are).

Sunday, Madre and I explored the Wharf, Pier 39, the Ferry Building, street performers, and Ghirardelli Square. I bought Boudin Sourdough bread, a chocolate sundae, and amazing cheese by the Cowgirl Creamery called Red Hawk. It smells like the inside of a ripe diaper, but tastes amazing. Although Hubby tends to disagree with me since our whole house currently smells like Red Hawk. 🙂

The lobby at The Mark where Liam Neeson and Samuel L. Jackson were spotted

While at the Mark Hopkins, two movie stars were spotted in our hotel – Liam Neeson (Why couldn’t I have been there to tackle him????) and Samuel L. Jackson. Oh, the stories & memories this trip has given me!! Okay, this has been a far too long Freebee Friday! Post, so I must end it now.

Happy Friday, all, and I hope your weekend is vundabar!


Sensible shoes at Bodega Bay

The tasting bar was outside over a covered

awning with heaters. It was pouring rain outside.

A completely different experience and

vibe from the other vineyard we visited,

Lynmar, with it’s manicured estate.

Vineyards at Iron Horse

Our wine tasting guide, Damien

and my aunt (There’s an official title,

but I can’t remember it. I think it

starts with an R or an S)

A display in the SEATAC devoted to Twilight and Forks, WA. Thought this was amusing and that I would share. 🙂 It even had “Forks Sparkle Lotion”

View from the hotel room at night

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So, I promise to start writing more post-y things on here. I’ve just been so INCREDIBLY busy. Finishing up the final rounds of edits to CASTE so I can get it off, then preparing for the feis this week

Freebee Friday!

There are a lot of funny commercials on tv right now. And since I’m in the market for a new phone, I notice those the most. Here’s the one I want. And they just happen to have one that makes me laugh.


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