Sunday, June 20, 2010

San Francisco

We've been back a week now, but I'm just now finally having a chance to write about our trip to San Francisco.

This is the third year I've gone to San Francisco with Rob for the WWDC. The first year I was healthy and fit, and I roamed the city on foot for hours and hours every day. Last year, I was very sick and very pregnant and a fair amount of the time I had to lie in bed trying not to puke. And this year I had Will.

Stroll through the airport

Luckily, he was a very good sport for the most part. The time zone change was a little rough on him, plus the trip coincided with his ongoing teething, but overall, it was a lot easier than I thought it might be.

Will didn't care for the crib that the hotel provided, so he ended up sleeping in bed with Rob and me. It was actually the first time he's ever done that. At home he always cries and screams if I try to put him in bed with us, so we have never been able to co-sleep. But for some reason in the hotel, our bed was where he wanted to be. It worked out pretty well, because with his time zone confusion and teething, he would wake up a couple of times in the night anyway, and I didn't even have to get up to nurse him or calm him down. The bed was a king size bed (larger than our bed at home), so luckily there was plenty of room for Will to do his usual nighttime rotations. Pretty much every night he would pivot so that he was lying crossways in the bed, with the top of his head snuggled into my side and his feet in Rob's face. I thought that was cute and hilarious, but then again, I wasn't the one waking up with someone's feet in my face.

Will and I managed to do a lot of sightseeing while Rob was at the conference. I am so, so glad I ended up getting an Ergo of my own before the trip. We took a few trips out on the town with the stroller, but for the most part, we just Ergo-ed it. We found out that strollers were not allowed on buses unless they were folded up, and it was really so much of a pain for me to carry the baby, the stroller, and the diaper bag. Just going with the Ergo was a lot easier when I was on the bus by myself. Plus, the buses and cable cars get very crowded, so even if I had managed to lug the stroller on by myself, it would have been difficult to manage all that while also on a standing room only bus. With the Ergo, Will was right there and could nurse when he got hungry and fall asleep against me when he got tired.

Will's first cable car ride
Will nursing in the cable car


Together, Will and I trekked through Chinatown, Fisherman's Wharf, the Embarcadero, the Castro, and Haight-Ashbury. During Rob's breaks from the conference, the 3 of us took trips to Ghirardelli Square, Coit Tower, Golden Gate Park, and Ocean Beach.



Will sleeps through his first visit to the ocean

After the conference was over, last Saturday we all went to Golden Gate Bridge. Will decided to get fussy just as we arrived, so I ended up nursing him in the Ergo as we walked part of the way across the very windy bridge. That's probably one of the strangest places I have ever nursed the baby.

Team Ragfield at bridge

From Golden Gate Bridge we took a bit of a lovely hike to Baker Beach. Rob wore Will in the Ergo for the hike, being that I was quite tired from all that lactating and walking.

Two sweaty guys hiking the Coastal Trail

Will was awake for his second trip to the ocean, and the weather was much nicer this time. Interestingly, we didn't realize that Baker Beach is apparently a nude beach, at least at the north part (where we entered). I actually didn't notice at first, because I was too focused on Will and the ocean, but then at some point I realized that some of the people out on the beach were nude. It was a bit weird, though I will say, a definite plus was when Will got hungry and wanted to nurse again, I didn't feel the need to cover up or try to be discreet.

Team Ragfield on Baker Beach

This year's trip was definitely a lot better than last year, when I was nauseated all the time. One major improvement is that the sight, smell, or thought of Chinese food doesn't make me want to set myself on fire and jump screaming out of a window anymore. Being that there is a large population of Chinese people in San Francisco, avoiding exposure to Chinese food is downright impossible. I even ate Chinese food again for the first time since probably January 2009 (when for a week, all I wanted to eat was chow mein vegetables, and since then have not wanted anything to do with it). I survived the experience, but I think I could probably go at least another year before eating Chinese food again.

I also was able to enjoy a seriously fantastic hummus and veggie sandwich from a place called (I think?) Cafe Verona, on 5th between Mission and Market. We got sandwiches there to take on our picnic lunch to Baker Beach. I know I was really hungry by the time we ate, but that sandwich was probably the best thing I have ever eaten in my entire life. I ate there a few times last year too, but so many things made me sick (hold the cucumbers, onions, peppers, etc) that it was difficult at best. The worst part was that there is a sushi restaurant right next to the cafe, and when I was pregnant, the smell of it made me want to hurl myself into an erupting volcano. Last year, I had to walk past this place to get from our hotel to Moscone, where the conference was held, and every time I did it, I had to bury my face in the crook of my elbow and close my eyes (even the sight of the place made me sick) so that I didn't die. This year, we stayed at a different hotel, so I didn't walk past there every day. When I did finally walk past that sushi place, the smell was gross and disgusting and it brought back all sorts of memories from when I was sick and pregnant, but it didn't make me feel awful to the terrifying extent that it did back then. At any rate, if anyone reading this ever visits San Francisco, go to that cafe on 5th Street next to the sushi restaurant and get a sandwich, it's divine.

One other thing that helped us all out eating-wise was that I found a Whole Foods within walking distance from our hotel. I was able to get avocados and bananas and other things for Will to eat, so we were fine in that regard. Plus, we had fridge in our room, so I got soymilk and cereal for breakfast, snacks, etc. Having a grocery store and fridge made it a lot easier to be a traveling vegan. Walking around all day with Will in the Ergo, not to mention lactating, makes me ravenously hungry. I discovered that Whole Foods carries an assortment of vegan doughnuts, which were amazing . It is probably a good thing that I do not have regular access to vegan doughnuts.

That's all for now, thanks for reading.

No comments: