San Francisco – Day 4 (Saturday)

Last day of San Francisco…

Our objectives for Saturday were to see the lighthouse and go to the beach.  This was a bit more of a chill-out day. Our plane left in the evening.

The first thing we did was drive across the bay from Benicia to the northern peninsula.  The lighthouse is on a point northwest of the Golden Gate Bridge (the land extends a lot farther out into the sea from the Bridge on the north side than on the south).  The point is on the side of a large mountain, overlooking the bridge and the city from a deceptively high point, as waves crash and roar at the cliffs several hundred feet below.  As you hike to the point where the lighthouse sits, you walk right along cliffs that drop straight down into deadly surf and rocks.  The path leads to a crag.  The lighthouse is on the other side of the crag.  There is an old door set into the stone.

When we got there, an elderly park worker talked for a moment, and then opened up the door, which led into a short, crude stone tunnel with a low ceiling that was hacked out of the stone by hand many years ago.  After exiting the tunnel, you walked across a rickety bridge to the lighthouse (Okay, it wasn’t really rickety, it was  actually built like a mini version of the suspension bridges they have around the area, but it was still freaky to walk over cuz it bounced and stuff and if you look at a the picture it’s right over the spine and the cliffs.  Walking across it could be compared to the moment of suspense when you’re about to walk through the metal detector at the airport, like “Am I gonna make it? Am I gonna make i- YES!!!”).  All around this area, strangely enough, especially within the tunnel, I felt so strange, almost, insecure, on this small point, so high up above the roaring ocean.  I don’t know, it’s weird.  You’d have to go there yourself.

Like they say, pics or didn’t happen.

Lovethespin - Valerie Christensen -- 2014-10-18.jpgLovethespin - Valerie Christensen -- 2014-10-18.jpg

I never had a mullet, the hat just kind of makes it look like that in this particular picture for some reason.

You can see how far away the bridge is in the second picture.  I know my Mom has pictures that show how high this place actually feels and the treacherous ocean far below (edit: I added the “featured image,” which I found on Google Images, and I think better shows that), but they aren’t uploaded to WordPress right now.  I think I will do an image-oriented post about this whole trip at some point and try to get some other ones on.

After the lighthouse, we headed down the other side of the seemingly huge crest into a canyon, at the end of which there was a sandbar and a small beach.  It would have been a very nice place if there were not about six thousand hornets there.  But we chilled there for a while.  We ended up eating our Subway sandwiches (which I had failed to mention that we had acquired before ascending the mountain to see the lighthouse) as we drove out of the canyon. But they were still good.

We ended up going back to downtown, because my sister insisted that we go back to the Aquatic Park to go swimming (if you don’t know what that is, go find my Day 2 post and read it).  I didn’t go swimming myself; I preferred to listen to some Three Days Grace and walk around the Aquatic Park and the Fisherman’s Wharf a little. We all have our own ways of relaxing.  Mine usually do not involve associating with other people.  Usually, complete solitude is preferred.  I suppose one would think that that isn’t exactly synonymous with the crowded streets of the Fisherman’s Wharf, but strangely enough, I guess, being on crowded streets where I know I don’t know anyone (Although I swear I saw this one dude that I sat next to in my ninth grade math class.  That was weird.)

We hit Ghirardelli one last time, and then took the long way through downtown to the freeway so we could drive down Lombard Street.  I remember that the drive back to the airport was especially nice for some reason; we were driving along the bay and the urban outskirts in the late afternoon sunlight.  One of those moments where you just kind of need to live in your own mind for a while…I don’t know that probably doesn’t make any sense.  But it was nice.

Did I mention that I actually found the airport interesting?  SFO is huge; I think it’s even bigger than LAX.  I think I might be the only person who finds airports actually very satisfying, something about an organized process maybe. And then there’s the fact that you get on to a metal flying machine, which I guess is mundane or something for most people.  But I like it.

We ate dinner at the airport.  We ate at a place called the Firewood Grill or something like that, which isn’t really that noteworthy but I thought it was pretty funny because I’m pretty sure they had a gas fire inside their fancy brick oven. I looked at it for some reason.  But they had that traditional Italian pizza stuff and it was good.  And maybe that’s all that matters in life.

We got on our airplane as it was getting dark, and got one last view of the area as we flew out over the Bay.  It was actually kind of sad.  I wasn’t really even there for that long, but I really still miss the place.  And that was like, what, October?  And now it’s the last day of January.  Dang, that time went by fast.  And all of the time I was in Utah I was just thinking, “Dang, why am I here?  Why am I not in San Francisco?  At Muir Beach?”  (But then it’s weird though because, like, right now, now that I’m in California and staying here for a while, after being here for longer than a normal vacation’s time, I kind of almost wish I could go back to Farmington and just hide in my house and be antisocial for a while.  Nobody will even know I came back; I don’t think anyone even knew I left in the first place.  But I don’t know, that’s a completely different internal conflict.)

When we were eating at the Propane Grill at the airport, we were discussing what we thought the best part of the whole thing was.  And I said Muir Beach and the woods and pretty much that whole area, for reasons I cannot explain.

I don’t know what I’m writing for; maybe nobody, myself, a black void, I don’t know.  It’s weird though because I don’t know if anyone’s ever gonna see this; or if a thousand people will, or ten thousand… but like, when I wrote that first article, it was just a rundown.  And coincidentally that was when I talked about that place that I said I liked.  I don’t know how else to explain it.  And that’s how I thought all of these articles would be.  And what’s changed since then?  That was Monday, the blog wasn’t up then, and now it’s Saturday and the blog still isn’t up.  All I had was time.  Time to think.  But I think all the time.  But even in the time I was writing this article, my voice I was using changed.  The amount of emotion I was using changed.  Maybe it’s just because I’m by myself and it’s 11 p.m. and that’s when most deep thought happens.  And I forget that I’m writing about a trip I took for a website about our family travel.  But I have to get it out somewhere.  All of this stuff I all of the sudden just want to say, that I just want to get out…

But I probably should stop before I say something I may regret.  I probably already have, but I dwell on things I have said that I regret too much.  I don’t know who or what I’m speaking to and for, so why would it matter?

I was gonna censor this and then I’m kinda just like, meh.

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