I've spent a lot of time in San Francisco over the years between road trips and work trips, but this time has felt different because I have absolutely no agenda. When I was planning my trip, I wanted to take advantage of having time off to do all the things people say you should do but I always felt too busy to actually remember to follow through on-- like drinking more water, spending less time sitting & more time moving, eating clean [if you count in-n-out as clean], making time for friends, and doing yoga. I've been trying a new yoga class every day thanks to ClassPass - it's a fun way to tour the city and there's basically a class going on at anytime somewhere so I don't have to plan my day around finding a class.
For my first week, I set up my camper at a resort in Pacifica, a town just south of San Francisco. Waking up to the waves outside my door is my definition of happy place and it was the ideal spot for surfing and biking around the area. I haven't been on my bike much in the last year and a half, ever since I did Ironman CDA and was a little bit traumatized by 8 hours of biking the hills of Couer D'Alene. The hills in SF aren't any easier, and while I wouldn't say it was as ugly as the last time I rode, I couldn't make it more than 5 minutes without stopping to catch my breath and take pictures.
One of my first nights here, I met up with my old college roommate Amanda for Thai takeout and wine. Amanda has always been that friend who is much cooler than you but acts totally casual about it. The last time I saw her and her husband Charley, she updated me on what they'd been up to, 'the usual, just work and we're training for our first triathlon.' when her husband reminded her that she had just gone to Indonesia by herself a couple weeks before to hand deliver a US aid proposal for work. She's the type of person who laughs most things off, and it was so good catching up with her before they left for a wedding in Florida. I'm currently petsitting for their cat, Kitten Bear, or actually getting stared down by Kitten Bear who is probably wondering who I am and why I'm acting like I own the place.
The next night, my friend Laura's best friend from home in Wisconsin invited me over for dinner. It must be a midwest thing, because both Laura and her friend Brittany have a way of being so genuinely welcoming as soon as you meet them. It was like 'C'mon over, we'll have salmon on the grill!' and Brittany and her boyfriend Karl were already showing me their three-legged cat and writing out a list of people to meet and places to go on my road trip.
Today I had my first dim sum experience with arguably my two favorite asians, Vinny and his fiancé Alex. If you're going to do dim sum, you might as well go all-in with friends who can order in Chinese and will tell you when you're embarrassing them by how you hold your chopsticks. Vinny is a good friend from Portland and Alex will be trading the bay for bridge city after they say I do next April. I was happy to catch them while we were all in one place!
Tomorrow morning, I'll head south to spend the holiday with another good friend from college, Kristen, and her family. It will be the first Thanksgiving I've spent away from my family in 5 years, but it'll also be the sunniest so I think I'll manage. :)