Wednesday, May 9, 2007

More SF Adventures

Today is my last day here in beautiful San Francisco. The conference ends at noon and AM and I will go to the Beach Chalet for a long lunch. Maybe we'll visit the beach afterwards. Then AM will drop me at BART and I'll be on my way back to Las Vegas.

Two nights ago we ate at Boulevard. The food was excellent, equally as good as the food at Aziza. Last night we ate at Hunan's which was good spicy Chinese food. After our other meals, this was definitely mundane. Not bad a all, just not WOW! food. I'm so spoiled.

Two nights ago was also the night the fire alarm went off at 3. O'clock. A. M. Yes, A.M.! My fellow floor mates (only our floor got alarmed) and I trudged down the emergency stairs and stood on the street until the fire department came and declared a false alarm. Then we went back to bed. Of course by then the adrenaline had me fully awake. The next day I complained bitterly to the hotel manager. Not about the alarm which wasn't the hotel's fault but about the complete lack of response by the hotel staff. I asked one doorman if we had to stay outside and he said yes. Then I realized someone else was going in and asked another staff person and they said we could go in the lobby but the elevators were not functioning. I told the front desk clerk lots of others were outside not knowing they could come in. He did nothing. Nothing. Then another guest finally figured out the elevators were functioning again. The staff never made any announcements, never explained the problem. It was a dismal performance. Bad Hotel Nikko. Bad, bad, bad Hotel Nikko. Oh, is my Hotel Nikko post getting higher up on search engines? No? Well then, you could help by linking to this post with a Hotel Nikko link.

Monday, May 7, 2007

All SF All The Time

Another great day in San Francisco. AM picked me up about 9:30 and we went off to the Ferry Plaza. There we got a delicious smoked salmon platter and had brunch sitting outside by the ferry dock. We meandered through the shops and tasted olive oils. Then it was off to Beach Blanket Babylon. We learned from AM’s friend that just showing up wasn’t a great idea so we phoned first and reserved two seats. It’s a good thing we did. The line started in front of the theater over an hour before the show and seating started about 45 minutes before the show. We got a perfect view first row seat for a fabulous show. The songs are funny, irreverent and not at all politically correct. They do a great job keeping the show current. There was even a lyric about Paris Hilton going to jail and I think that verdict was just handed down a couple of days ago.

After the show we headed to North Beach and had a nice glass of wine at The Blarney Stone, a little Irish pub near the restaurant. We listened to the brogue of the people around us and watched part of the Giant game. Then we met Ilmar at Aziza, a Moroccan restaurant. The food was even better than Saturday’s. We shared a delicious escalar, some couscous, some Mediterranean spreads and fava beans. It was all excellent.

Today I will spend most of my day in workshops and then meet AM for dinner for some more good food. If the food is better than last night's I’ll reach nirvana

Sunday, May 6, 2007

Take Another Little Piece Of My Heart

I'm here in the city that owns part of my heart. San Francisco! I'm attending a conference Monday thru Wednesday so I came into town early to enjoy the city. I got another great Priceline deal at the Hilton in the Financial District. My room look pretty much like the one in the picture on the front page but I have two beds. I'm sitting at the desk with a great view of the bay and Coit Tower. In a bit, my Aunt Mary is coming to pick me up and we're going to Ferry Plaza where we will browse little shops and find some place to have brunch. Then we're going to see if we can get tickets on short notice to see Beach Blanket Babylon. If there tickets available, we'll see the show, otherwise we'll find something else to do. Because it is San Francisco! There is always something to do.

The weather is beautiful though a little warm for natives I think. For a Las Vegan, it is perfect walking around weather. Yesterday I BARTed to the Embarcadero where AM picked me up and we went to SFMOMA to see the Picasso exhibit. The exhibit has Picasso exhibited with other American artists who drew from his work. Wonderful! After the museum visit, we headed off to our local watering hole of choice, Harry's Bar, for a glass of wine. Then we walked a couple of miles to meet up with one of my favorite people, Ilmar, and had dinner at Canteen. Dinner was superb. We shared some ceviche and I had the bass -- melt in your mouth bass. The food and the company was the best. After dinner we walked to a local coffee shop and chatted for hours. Finally, we had to say goodnight and I grabbed a cab back to my hotel - how SF is that?

And now I'm telling you about it. Later today, I move to the conference hotel. Hotel Nikko looks just as nice as my Hilton. I didn't have to get a priceline deal because work is paying. Yay! Mary and Ilmar and I will be exploring more restaurants in the coming days. I'll fill you in.