Home Sweet Home

Wednesday, November 14th, 2007, 3:02 pm

While San Francisco was pretty much awesome (and I mean that in the Biblical, jaw-dropping way, not in Valley Girl vernacular) I’m glad to be home. Especially as the cold I was fighting for two days finally caught up to me. Got home yesterday morning after taking the redeye, but it feels like I just walked in the door. Lots of catchup sleep.

Some quicky stuff:

Of course we had to see the Steeler game on Sunday and what better place than a little bit ‘o the ‘Burgh? We went to Giordano Bros. on Columbus, which is owned by a couple of expatriate Pittsburghers and serves sandwiches in the Primanti style. We got there just as they opened and the place was nearly empty–by kickoff (when Tran joined us), the place was packed. And when Phil Dawson’s FG fell just short, the place went nuts:

It’s weird how the time difference changes the NFL experience. Drinking beer at 10AM is, I found, a lot of fun. It was also a lot of fun seeing people walking past Giordanos and then stopping to peek in to see what all the noise was about. After Big Ben scored on his 30-yard scramble and the HERE WE GO STEELERS, HERE WE GO!! chant rattled the rafters I saw a group of Asian women stop outside the door and look with horror at the scene within. Must’ve been Browns fans.

We ended up sitting next to a guy who went to the same high school as Mark and I. Small world. One apparently dotted with fanatic groups of Steeler fans. Once the game was over the place cleared out a bit, and that’s when we decided to get a late lunch:

Good, good stuff. The biggest difference between Giordanos and Primantis was the bread. Mancinis bread adds some heft to the sammich and some extra chewiness…but I still was licking the wax paper after I disposed of my Giordano’s. Awesome place.

We stayed for most of the doubleheader games and then Tran headed back home. Mark and I wandered outside and that’s when we came across City Lights bookstore. Mr. Speaker said that was a must-see and so in we went. I should know better than to go book shopping after slugging down beer for six hours, and when you combine that with the general euphoria of a Steeler win and the romance of an old bookstore I went a bit nuts. I ended up buying six books, and as there’s a plaque to Jack Kerouac outside the store I got a copy of On the Road which, I’m embarassed to say, I’ve never read before. Also bought a couple of Michael Chabon’s books, Woody Allen’s latest collection, and the new book about Hunter S. Thompson. It wasn’t until I sobered up a few hours later that I realized that not only could I have gotten these books at Amazon at about half the price, I’d have to lug them home as well. But, what the hell. Good karma supporting a local bookstore. Even one that’s about 2,700 miles away.

That was Sunday, and as Monday was our last day in San Fran we made a mad dash around the city. Went to see the Golden Gate Bridge, and even though I live in the City of Bridges I have to admit it was pretty impressive. Big. High.

I’ve written before that I don’t like heights, but as with most phobias it’s a double-headed monster. I don’t like them…but I’m fascinated by them. For some reason I thought there was high fencing along the entire length, but no! You can lean over, look down, and imagine what it would be like to throw a leg over the rail and take the plunge. It’s kind of a moth-to-the-flame kinda thing, but fortunately I was able to resist the urge to hurl myself into the bay like a really fat lemming:

From there we went to Golden Gate Park, saw the Japanese Tea Garden and the Arboretum, and then we went to Ghiardelli Square so Mark could buy stuff for the folks in his office. Then it was back to the Tadich Grill for another fantastic meal (yeah, we could’ve gone somewhere else, but didn’t wanna) and then back to the hotel to wait for our flight. It was a busy day criss-crossing the city by bus, streetcar and shuttle. In fact, during our visit we traveled by plane, train, trolley, streetcar, bus, taxi, and shuttle. No boats, and no horses.

So that was San Francisco. Saw about 3% of it, but liked what I saw. I gained a couple of pounds while I was out there, but losing weight while on vacation in San Francisco would almost be a sin. So it’s back to the veggies the gym for me. And even as I’m recovering today I know that I have a busy schedule ahead of me. My nephew gets baptized on Saturday, then Thanksgiving, then my 20-year reunion (looks like I won’t be svelte by then) and, of course, Vegas the first week of December. My runabout life.

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2 Responses to “Home Sweet Home”

  1. TripJax Says:

    Are those fries IN the sandwich???

  2. gadzooks64 Says:

    I swear I’ve gained 10lbs since you’ve been in San Fran.

    You better be going on a diet soon damn you!

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