I arrived back in San Francisco yesterday morning after having woken up at 4am for my 7:30am flight. Thank you Papa Dukes for driving me, and no, I have no idea why me or my sister call you that. But before I left, Mischief walked in front of me 3 times on Friday. I suspect it was to trip me so I couldn't leave. But the more likely explanation is that Mischief doesn't realize the pecking order of cats to humans; i.e. that he has to move out of the way. Yes, I nearly fell down the stairs. My father plopped Thomas onto my bed before I went to sleep and instructed him to "stay with his mother." And he did, until I woke up at 4am. All the cats looked genuinely confused at being woken up that early. They looked to us for guidance. Their eyes said "ma, should I eat now or go back to sleep? I don't get this. It's still dark."
Okay, enough about cats. We arrived at the airport with ample time. I switched on my light weight jacket and nearly started shivering during my walk from the car to the airport. 15 degrees will do that to you. If there was ever a girl who understood self-branding, it's me. I don't know many people who accidentally have 4 items of a deep magenta on - my pants, scarf, handbag and carry-on suitcase.
The flight was fairly uneventful. I arrived in San Francisco to absolutely beautiful weather. After settling in and showering, I walked around North Beach, almost able to pretend I was in Italy. With the unseasonably warm weather, everyone was out and about. Despite having access to a million forms of entertainment, there's no denying that simply walking outside, laying out in the sun, talking to friends, eating and drinking coffee is usually the most enjoyable. And more than that, it's timeless. I could have taken that walk (minus listening to music from my iPhone), hundreds of years ago. Although it's most likely I wouldn't have seen a cat on a leash. Yes, only in San Francisco.
After going into stores I never had time to explore while in school, I had dinner by myself at a cafe where I read and sat outside. Note to self - arrange dinners before I get to my destination! I started a conversation with two older men sitting next to me. One was a taxi driver who was full of interesting stories. He seemed genuinely happy with his job and said it was way less stressful than being a cab driver in New York. Like for instance, if he wanted a break, he could go to Ocean Beach and just sit and watch the ocean. I learned that he went on less drug runs now for people. That if he doesn't trust someone, he'll drive around until they get the hint and leave. He told me about a successful woman who lived a bi-coastal lifestyle. He said that she seemed like a go-getter with endless amounts of energy. Is that the key to success? Anyway, it feels good to be back. I'd have these experiences in New York but think San Franciscians are more friendly and more likely to talk to strangers. It's obvious to me that I'll be happy where ever I end up and am enjoying the journey.