Sunday, May 1, 2011

Travels: (Flying Away From) The Dock Of the Bay

Saturday, April 23rd (The Night)
After my sister's show at the Pilipino Cultural Night at SF State, we were all starving!  I don't know what these Filipinos were thinking when they put together this 4-hour non-sequitur, especially considering that many in the audience were family members.  But my sister was awesome in the cultural dances.

We ended the evening at a greasy Thai restaurant near my sister's place called King of Thai Noodle.  It was kind of perfect for my exhausted sister and parents.

It was the first time in a long time that we as a complete family had dinner together.
This was my final night of sleep in San Francisco, and it felt nice to have spent it with my family.

Sunday, April 24th
I woke up a bit saddened by my final day, but excited to still be in the California warmth.  My parents and brother were driving back down to Southern California later that afternoon, so they wanted to have breakfast together.

We ended up at the Millbrae Pancake House, which has been in the area for over 50 years.  My dad, who is ever the joker, told our waitress that we had driving up from L.A. just to visit the restaurant.  The woman was totally taken aback and was honestly flattered that we had done so.  I didn't have the heart to tell her he was joking.

Being that it was Easter Sunday, there were a lot of families coming for breakfast in their Sunday best.  And then, there was this family.
I really have no words, actually...
After breakfast, we said goodbye to my sister and her boyfriend, and we went back into San Francisco to get pastries to bring back with us on our travels.  I didn't get any cake on my birthday, I realized.  So, I asked if we could get ube cake for me to take back to Boston.

My parents dropped me off at my sister's apartment, and we said our final farewells before they took the long drive back south.  It does make me sad that I don't get to see them as often as I'd like to.

I'm hoping to be able to visit Los Angeles and California again in July.

I had two more folks to see before I left, though.

I was excited to see a belly dancer friend of mine and her two adorable boys.  I met up with them in the Castro area, and we chatted about the dance teachers in San Francisco.  I ended up back at their beautiful home and then at another park to watch the little ones participate in some Easter Egg Hunting action.

I was really looking forward to hanging out with this friend and her family mainly because of all the hilarious things her kids say and do that she posts on Facebook.  Usually, at least with parents who are a bit more obnoxious, I can't really handle the saccharine.  But her two boys are just hilarious and she not an obnoxious parent.

It also made me think a lot about how neat it must be to raise your kids in such a free-flowing neighborhood.  While I'm sure the Castro is full of unfriendly people, I feel like it really instills young children with the idea of acceptance and open-mindedness.  I mean, granted some of the Castro events are a bit less child-friendly, but they're mainly behind closed doors.

After the Easter Egg Hunt, it was time for me to do my final preparations before flying back.  After a quick shower, I packed my belongings and called my sister to say goodbye and thank you.

As I had started my whirlwind of catch-up with friends with someone I knew from Boston, I also ended my catch-up with another dear friend from Boston.  It was perfect, really, since she needed to go to the airport to pick up a friend around the same time that I needed to be at the airport.

She took me to Emmy's Spaghetti Shack, in the Bernal Heights area.  It's a really cute little hole in the wall, and you wouldn't even realize what it was if you just casually passed by it.  My friend recommended the spaghetti with meatballs, since it would help me to get sleepy on my red-eye flight.  The "big meatballs" are no joke.  They're BIG!  The meal and drinks were delicious.

My friend and I were interns in the same place, and she's been one of the few people from San Francisco who I've seen the most.  She's such a super positive and bright and funny person, and it felt good to talk with her about all the troubles I've had in finding a job.  But I left feeling more encouraged.


As I walked through the San Francisco International Airport (Terminal 2) to my gate, I started feeling anxious again.  It was like I was leaving home again, and yet I was excited to go back to the boyfriend and the kittehs.

I really consider myself extremely lucky to have a home base on both sides of the country.  Though it's been a difficult year, I love my life and the people in it in Boston.  But if it came down to it, and it felt like the right time to move I would definitely consider making a move to San Francisco, even for a little while.  Not because it's any lovelier than Boston or Los Angeles (though there is the California sun to consider).  But because I know that I have so many people who I love in that City by the Bay.

Yet, when I landed in Boston, hopping on the Blue Line to the Green Line back home, I'm found myself so happy to be home.

Oh, and my ube cake made it safe and sound through security and a 5 and a half hour flight right into my fridge and my extremely happy belly.

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