Friday, August 24, 2007

What I Did On My Vacation

Well, we've been home one week, and I have finally gotten some time on our desktop to be able to download the pictures from our vacation.

After a five hour drive up to Monterey, we visited the Monterey Bay Aquarium. This little guy on the right, is one of the otters that we saw there. They were absolutely adorable! If you ever get to the west coast and find yourself in Monterey...I would definitely recommend that you visit the aquarium.

Here are some jellyfish that we saw at the Aquarium. I couldn't believe how peaceful I felt watching them. However, Twelve knows from first hand experience, just how much their sting really hurts! (She was stung on her leg at the beach one summer).

After the Aquarium, we drove up to Santa Cruz, and visited a place called 'The Mystery Spot'. I've heard of this place for many years. Objects seemingly roll uphill. People look way taller than someone and just by switching places, they suddenly look only mildly taller than that same person. Lots of optical illusions. However, it definitely entertained us. After the Mystery Spot, we went over to the Santa Cruz Boardwalk and walked around.

The next morning, we drove about 15 minutes and visited a place called 'Roaring Camp Railroads' where you can take a steam engine up to the redwoods. (see the picture on the right).It was another fun activity. Once were disembarked, we drove up to San Francisco.

While in San Francisco, we rode the cable cars, visited the Palace of the Fine Arts (pictured here), went to the Exploratorium, which is an interactive museum and great for kids and adults alike. We rode buses, ate dinner in Chinatown one night and North Beach (which is like Little Italy in New York) another night. We also visited Ghiradelli Square, and the Wax Museum. The kids wanted to also visit the Ripley's Believe It Or Not Museum but both DH and I thought it was too creepy.

(On the right is a picture of someone 'turning' the cable car once it got to the end of the line...Twelve took this picture...good for her)

On Wednesday, we visited Alcatraz. It's now part of the National Parks. We took a ferry over to the island, and then took the audio tour. If you ask Ten and Twelve their favorite part of our vacation, they will tell you that it was visiting Alcatraz. The weather during our trip was glorious. No San Francisco fog for us!

On Thursday, we met some friends and walked across the Golden Gate Bridge. It was a beautiful day, and we were comfortable walking the bridge in t-shirts and shorts...with our sweatshirts wrapped around our waists...just in case it became windy and cold.

After we walked the bridge (which sure beats walking the plank), we took a bus over to Golden Gate park and visited the Japanese Tea Garden. We drank tea and walked around. It can be a quiet, peaceful almost meditative place, unless you are walking around with a Ten year old male child. Then it's not so quiet. sigh

Finally, on Friday, we took a detour and stopped in San Jose (Do you know the way to San Jose?...I bet Dionne Warwick does) in order to see the Winchester Mystery House. (Funny how using the word 'Mystery' to describe a place suddenly makes it worth visiting). The story goes that Sarah Winchester (who inherited the Winchester fortune, when her husband died) visited a psychic and was told to build a house, and that as long as she kept building, she would appease the souls of people killed by the Winchester rifles...or something like that. The first 1/2 hour of the tour was interesting...after that Ten and Twelve became quite bored. Which was fine, because then we drove home.

As is a photo of Ten, Twelve and myself at the bar in the Rainforest Cafe restaurant. Seems that we each grew extra legs while we were busy walking around San Francisco.

So, here it is, one week later. The trip is just a memory...albeit a really good memory. Any suggestions as to where we should visit next year?


patches said...

Sounds like a nice trip. SF is one of my favorite places to spend a few days.

There are at least three waning signs on the bar in the Rainforest cafe. Were you guys in any immediate danger of spider monkeys and stuff?

the moose buyer said...

great trip and descriptions. Uncle Bill, Frank and I did the exact same things, except for walking the bridge (we did the Believe it or not Museum). Looks like you guys had great weather up there.

Patti said...

Thanks for sharing those great photos. Everything looks like it was fun to see. I especially would have loved to visit the Japanese garden and sipped tea.

Coincidentally we were just talking about Dionne Warwick yesterday. She is going to be performing at parent's weekend in October at the U of Hartford. I'm sure tickets are expensive, but it would be fun to see her and get a blast from our past (the 60s, that is!)

I enjoyed this post. For your next vacation you can visit Connecticut. We can't put you up but we can show you the highlights!

Joan said...

Just looking at your photos of SF and Monterey makes me feel so much cooler. How I'd love to be in either place right now. Oh...and I love the photo of you and the kids and your new legs. :~D

meno said...

The jelly fish picture is WONDERFUL!

Lynn said...

Patches - I think the most dangerous thing in the bar was the 'spirits'.

Moose Buyer - The weather couldn't have been better.

Patti - We have been talking about going back east for a vacation. The kids want to see N.Y. and their cousins in Pennsylvania. Who knows...we might have to take a side trip to Conn. so that I can visit my adopted blog sister and her dh;~)

Joan - I'm figuring since I now have 4 legs, that might explain the extra weight I'm carrying.

Meno - Thanks...the jelly fish really looked 'cool', and Twelve has a fascination with them ever since she was stung by one.

Patti said...

Lynn, sounds good to us!
That would be great fun.

Michele said...

Whoa, love the photos!... the jellyfish is my favorite. Reminds me of Finding Nemo... "you are mine, and i shall name you squishy" hehehe.... gotta love the chairs... I need a set of those in my kitchen... what a riot that would be! The giraffe one is hilarious...

Ralph said...

I guess that there can't be pleasure without pain (see: the jellyfish). Shall we talk about your animal instincts?

Marsha said...

Great travelogue. We are planning a trip to CA next summer, Lake Tahoe and San Francisco so I am going to steal some of your ideas for my family.

ARM said...

I love the pics and it makes me want to go to SF even more!! I think I'm going to really push for that to be our big vaca next year!

Can I ask, however, why are you & Twelve wearing winter coats?

Lynn said...

Patti - It would.

Michele - Aren't those chairs a riot! They certainly would keep the conversation going...however, I must admit, they weren't all that comfortable.

Ralph - There were other chairs to choose from...we all just gravitated to these...Maybe I unconciously want a longer neck. What do you think?

Marsha - SF is a great city...there is just so much to do there.

Arm - Twelve and I are wearing lightweight down jackets, because it got cold at night.

Melinda said...

Great Post !!
How Lucky you are to be able to visit SF. What a fantastic holiday you and your family seem to of had. I love all your photos, it is always great to see photos from the other side of the globe. Those chairs certainly put a smile on face, what a cute idea.

Take Care !! Glad you had such a great time !!

Lynn said...

Melinda - Thanks. I bet that there are many, many amazing places to visit in Australia.

sari said...

Sounds like you had a great trip!

I'm with you - anything with the word "mystery" in it is enough to make me want to visit.

I think I heard about the Winchester House that Sarah kept building all the weird additions to confuse the ghosts of the people killed so they wouldn't come after her. Aren't there all kinds of twisting hallways and doors that lead to nowhere and stairs that just end in the ceiling and stuff like that??

Lynn said...

Sari - Yep, that's the house. I have pictures of stairs that lead to ceilings, and closets that open to walls. As I said, it was entertaining for about 30 minutes...after that Ten and Twelve were bored.