Tuesday, December 26, 2023

Family biking in San Francisco in December? Who would have thought it would be so pleasant?

Our California vacation started today in as-expected style, with a Lyft arriving in Edwardsville, Illinois at 4 a.m. Lines at the St. Louis airport for our 6 a.m. flight were very long but fast moving, so we embarked on our Southwest flight to Los Angeles, then a 2.5-hour layover, and finally into San Francisco.

We’re staying at Hotel Caza at Fisherman’s Wharf one block off the main drag. Since we got in too early to check in, we left our bags, grabbed a complimentary bike from the hotel, and rented three others from Bay Area Rentals two blocks away and proceeded to bike through the main part of the Wharf, past Ghirardelli Chocolates, past the gorgeous houses on Marina Boulevard, Crissy Field (a former Army airfield that is now a major recreational hub), and to our furthest destination of the ride - the Warming Hut on the Bay Trail. That’s a great place to stare in amazement at the Golden Gate Bridge and the surfers below, especially if you have a kid who won’t make it up the climb to bike across the bridge, and double especially if it’s a little chilly. Even 58 degrees can seem a little chilly along the San Francisco waterfront.

We were glad to get the decent weather we got today as tomorrow is supposed to be pretty rainy and windy.

Zoey is an amazing kid. If I slept as little as her and ate the bird-like amount she had today, I would be very grumpy. 

But we rallied after a few moments resting in the hotel (while Zoey rampaged around the cool array of games like pool and shuffleboard in the lobby bar) to Lyft it to The Stinking Rose, one of my old favorite restaurants, we started with the must-have Bagna Calda, which is butter and olive oil with garlic cloves and anchovy. Perfect with bread. I got the creamy fondue crab pasta, the kids for pizza, and Rachel had a salad. Then we got genuine Italian gelatos across the street in the Italian neighborhood.

A 20-minute walk back to the hotel straight down Columbus was the perfect ending to walk off some of the garlic and crawl into bed before 8 p.m. local time.

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