Sunday, January 24, 2010

I left my heart in San Francisco and my toothbrush in Manila

San Francisco is our first stop on our homes leave this winter and it's cold oh so cold and rainy. The city seems expansive and open and uncrowded even for having over 800,000 residents. The crisp air is nice, but I find myself longing for the warmth of the tropics.

So far this trip to the States has made me feel like a foreigner in my own country.

I think Asian hotels have officially spoiled us. I packed nothing in the form of toiletries forgetting that hotels in the US don't provide toothbrushes and paste, razors and toiletries for children. When we walked into Starbucks (and there is literally one on every corner in SF) we look like we have never seen a coffee shop before. There are different things on the menu and cooler and on the shelves and we just stand there looking a little shocked. I am sure the barrista assumes we have just fallen off the turnip truck and have never been to a "big city," yet Manila is 10 times the size. I keep waiting for someone to open the darn door for me and I asking where the CR is and saying things like "no need" and "for a while." Maybe I can blame this all on the long flight with a 14 month old.

After a rather uneventful flight (always good when travelling with kids) jet lag officially reared it's ugly head lastnight and I am certain everyone on the 25th floor of the Marriott knows it! Finnley had a rough night but the rest of us were so tired we pretty much slept through his all-night-tantrum. He cried "YayaYaya" throughout the night and to be honest I was kind of hoping one of the hotel staff (hopefully Filipino and understanding of the word) would hear him and come running. No such luck. Luckily everyone slept in and we started our day fairly refreshed.

Rainy weather calls for bowls of soup in fresh sourdough bread bowls so we headed for Fishermans Wharf and Pier 39. The cold rain seemed to have kept most of the sealions away but there were enough for the boys to get the point and we had glimpse of the Golden Gate Bridge and Alcatraz. Holden is pretty intrigued by the concept of the prison. Hopefully, for the right reasons! Afterwards we headed to Ghiradelli square for a little persuasion of the chocolate kind.

We still have a few more days here to explore and then off we head to the frozen tundra where at least I know there are fireplaces...and grandparents!

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