USA, Day 1: The Marine Moves in on the Bay

19 Jun

I had originally intended to write these posts on the night of each day, but frankly, I had slept less than three hours over the course of my thirty five hour journey, and by the time I sat down to write this yesterday evening, I was positively cream-crackered.

And for good reason, even without my long trip, my day yesterday was an eventful one. My morning began as I sat in the Terminal in Phoenix Sky Harbour, and I was approached by a yellow-clad American gentleman. Standing above me, he questioned whether I was marine, complimenting my apparent (and quite non-existent) marine’s physique.
Seemingly unsatisfied by my answer, he next enquired whether I was a patriot. To this, I pointed out that I was British. Chuckling, he looked me in the eye and started speaking French at me. Undeterred, I responded in kind, before we parted ways. It was a strange exchange, but made me excited for what waited ahead. It was also a much needed pick-me-up, as earlier that day, my new friend had the startling realisation that she could not find her passport. I helped her search as best I could, but frankly, I felt rather useless, and was quite unhappy as she was escorted off to discuss her options by a kindly security supervisor.

But things definitely picked up from there. A few hours later, I found myself just outside the old army compound at treasure island, where me and my host for the week had a coffee and looked out over San Francisco from across the Bay. On our drive back to his house, he regaled me with the history of the Bay area, and showed me the inspiration for the AT-AT’s from George Lucas’ original Star Wars trilogy.

Later, we met up with a friend of his, and dined at a small but busy restaurant near a harbour. It was here that I had my first experience of the immensity of American dishes. Having bordered a salmon sandwich, I was presented with a hefty ciabatta, fries and a salad, and despite having always been taught to clean my plate, here, there was must no chance.

I was better off later. Again, we went out for dinner, this time at an Italian, with a funny, friendly couple, one of whom I was told that if I ‘batted my eyes at’ him, he would secure me reduced accommodation rates on the rest of my travels. I ordered the wrong thing by accident, and it was delicious. If anyone ever has the option of Marsala (I think it was called, although my mind may be being influenced by my time working in the Tandoori), I would highly recommend it.

It was fun food filled day, and although I only got a taster of San Francisco, it was nothing like I was expecting. I’m heading in to the city again today, this time alone, to experience it in the most tourist-y way I can muster.

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Posted by on June 19, 2014 in Travelling


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