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Old 13 Sep 12, 08:55 AM  
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WileyCoyote
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Disney Feast West&East: Day 2 San Fran HoHo City Tour

Another sing along start

HoHo (Ho), tis the season to be foggy, tra la la la ...

We are still on London time so are awake at stupid o’clock , waking up intermittently between 1230 and 0330 and at 4am we give up. We sort out the internet connection ( priorities) so we can send messages home that we have arrived ok. The boys don’t wake till nearly 7 so they have had 12 hours sleep . The plan says we have breakfast in the Honey Honey Café today , which is apparently just round the corner. Our internal GPS is clearly still back in the UK as we walk and walk and become increasingly conscious that we are further away from union square and the scenery is getting more colourful ( for this read, run down) and as Jamie steps over a syringe and other items , we conceded navigational defeat and turn round. Later, on our city tour we discover that we have in fact walked into the heart of the Tenderloin district , which in the words of the audio guide , “isn’t recommended for tourists”.

Ah well, nothing like experiencing the real city is there. We decide to head back to the place we went to last night – Lori’s Diner as we had seen the breakfast menu and we know the food is good. At least we have worked up an appetite. Breakfast is good. Really filling and with those amazing buttermilk pancakes. It perks everyone up a treat . At $92 it turns out to be one of the more expensive meals we have, but at the time we enjoyed it. We all go for some sort of pancake with egg/bacon/sausage type combo, Andy goes for corned beef hash. With lovely orange juice and hot coffee , it was a great start.







We decide to do our HoHo tour now, we will stay on for a circuit and then go round again and get off at places we like – well, that was the plan . We have a quick wander around Union Square and then decide catch the bus – up in the open top section so we can see everything. And its freezing , with the wind whipping round, but we are a hardy lot so its hoodies up and away we go.















This made us laugh



continued

Edited at 02:30 PM.
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Old 13 Sep 12, 09:13 AM  
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It was a real shame we didnt get time to go in the Science Academy









It’s a really interesting tour, even more so for Andy when after 20 minutes he asks us when its going to start in English as he has been tuned into the Spanish version . We learn all about the Tenderloin area ( yep been there) and how the city is split into a foggy half and sunny half – or in our case more foggy and less foggy. We learn loads of interesting things about the gold mining, the land reclamation and of course the point about early mariners missing the area due to the fog and it being not discovered till some time later. Are we noticing the references to fog? We get to the Golden Fog Bridge and thinking we will get a better picture on the other side we don’t get off for the obligatory picture. We take these instead. Then we go over the bridge and OMG its not just cold, its hypothermia inducing. And of course the bus doesn’t stop on the other side so no picture. Never mind, we can come back on a sunnier day (or not).







Are we having fun yet? Pass the hot water bottle, i'm turning into an ice cube



Palace of Fine Arts - we didnt get here either







Yay, then we get some Sunshine







continued
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Old 13 Sep 12, 09:24 AM  
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The second leg is a little sunnier as we change buses in the Pier 39 area which looks lively. We have defrosted by the time we get back to Union Square and its taken a good couple of hours. The boys want something to eat so we end up in the food court in the basement of Macy’s. They have ham and cheese toasties from the Boudin Bakery with drinks and brownies and it’s a modest $28.



We are a little tired by now so around 2.30 we head back to the hotel for forty winks and messing about on Ipads for a couple of hours.



Good thing we had abandoned our original idea of spending the day in the Science Academy, I don’t think we would have appreciated it – I am sad we didn’t get to see it though. Anyway at 4.30 we decide to head out for dinner. The plan says we go to ChinaTown but we aren’t sure where the restaurant is and have rather stupidly forgotten to look up directions. This is always cue for a row as wandering about looking for food doesn’t bring out the best in us. We set off in the wrong direction for China Town and a helpful information chap points us the right way.











Its buzzing , very colourful and full of tat and weird looking food.



I’m suddenly not so keen on eating here and the kids are making those grumbly whiney noises that don’t help. After several circuits and fraying nerves we end up outside the Great Eastern – where it seems President Obama ate once so if he ate here and didn’t fall off his perch then that’s good enough for me.





It’s a slightly disturbing place as we are seated next to the tanks of food that are unknowing of their future fate. We order quite a feast , especially as soup for 1 comes out as a bowl for 5 and the rice for 5 never arrives at all but isn’t really missed . The boys have the crispy fried chicken which was very nice until we discovered the chicken’s head on the platter , which I had to cover up with prawn crackers as it freaked me out

Andy had mixed appetisers and we shared some sweet and sour chicken with noodles. It was nice and they gave us a discount for missing out the rice. Our fortune cookies were disappointing in their predictions – who writes these things. Anyway , the meal plus 4 sodas and 2 beers was a very reasonable $89 so around $100 with the tip. We feel a little better on the walk back and we discover the place we had originally planned to go ( the R&G lounge) – that looked nice too.


We make a stop at Walgreens to pick up some snack fodder like Pringles and cookies and we try some Twinkies ( first and last).

Still tired so its lights out at 9pm. I think we all feel a little disappointed with today – it didn’t quite turn out as we expected – we had thought we would do more but were just too tired in the afternoon and a tired family doesn’t make for a happy family.

We have an early start tomorrow – it transpires that we have booked to go to Alcatraz on the morning on the SF marathon and Pier 33 is on the route – the Alcatraz and muni websites all say to allow extra time and the concierge has advised us to get a taxi rather than try local transport due to all the diversions. How on earth did I miss this major event in my planning !
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Old 13 Sep 12, 10:20 AM  
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itsrachelhere
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Hey Amanda, I didn't realise you were writing a trip report - how exciting! I am now wanting to look up flights to San Francisco. I miss the place. Even if it is cold, and foggy...
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Old 13 Sep 12, 07:03 PM  
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Another fab read! I'm prepared for the cold lol!
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Old 13 Sep 12, 07:58 PM  
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Aw those photos bring back lovely memories of SF and the fog! Great read!
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Old 13 Sep 12, 10:39 PM  
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What a great read. We never did the HoHo tour, rather regret that now. There just isn't enough time to do everything!
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Old 14 Sep 12, 08:24 AM  
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SammyScotland
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Great pictures Amanda - were you the only ones on the HOHO bus?
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Old 14 Sep 12, 01:27 PM  
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TinkTatoo
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What a shame about the weather, we must have been really lucky the week before as we had a small bit of fog but not much. It was nippy in the mornings and evenings but really nice during the day.
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Old 14 Sep 12, 02:29 PM  
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Great photos and trip report. We were lucky enough to go to the Academy of sciences a couple of weeks ago and we really enjoyed it, although I think it only took us about 3 hours to go round. Pictures will be forth coming on our own Trippy when I've started to post it up
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