Thursday, March 23, 2017

San Francisco, Anchorage & Fairbanks March 2017 [Day 1] 

Ah. The much planned trip. Actually I have been quite reluctant to actually do this trip due to the cold weather. I don't do well with the cold.

Anyways. just briefly, I'm on the way to bring my mother to see the Aurora Borealis in Fairbanks. Hope we get something!

Started Day 1 with a 0920 flight on SQ32 SIN - SFO. Was actually quite worried about this direct flight because it'd be the longest flight Ive ever had. The flight was pretty good as the plane was new and the crew (well there was one lady in particular that stood out but I missed getting her name) was really nice. Just had this one crew on another aisle who seemed to make her sentences sound rude due to choice of words.

Lovely large inflight monitors which was unfortunately pretty much always reclined towards my face... *sigh* and the lady in front made me worry if the chiar would break as her movements were quite sudden.

Landed in SFO just past 0800hrs, which was 1 hour earlier than when I started flying... so it was like woooooo.

Grabbed a meal at Wendy's at the SFO International Airport South Food Court before moving off to wait for the shuttle to the hotel.

Stopping for the night at Vagabond Inn Executive San Francisco South. But check in timing was 1500hrs ... so we were hoping to be able to drop off our luggage at the hotel without checking in, so that we could go walk around in San Francisco. Turns out that they don't have storage (probably because they are more a motel rather than a hotel?) but the lovely receptionist told me to hold on.... and so I waited for like 15 mins and she checked me in to a room! Woohooo!!

The room was up on the 3rd floor, but that doesn't matter to me. We went up and it is a good sized room with 2 queen size beds that looked so inviting (as we were bushed). So we decided to rest a bit... and napped till 1730hrs. The original plan was to drop stuff off and take the hotel shuttle back to the airport and take the BART to the city. Due to our wonderful snooze, that had to be scratched and I took my first ever Uber ride (with a free ride up to USD20!) to Chinatown, because that is the one place that I had confidence would be serving food past 1800hrs. Not too sure what I could get elsewhere anyway. The Uber ride was USD 21.48. so it ended up costing me just USD 1.48.

So we ended up eating at this restaurant called the Grand Palance, but it's the chinese name that's even cooler. 万寿宫。 Auspicious sounding name no?

Decided to order one fried rice each (bad choice cos one plate serves like 2 or 3 easily, 4 if you don't really want carbs) AND also half a peking duck because my mum thought it'd be nice to try their version... hokay! The best part is that my mum had seen the leftover fried rice on another table but assumed that the caucasians who ordered it didn't find the food to their liking...

We absolutely ordered too much food. Thank goodness when we called for the bill they asked us if we wanted to pack the food (which we decided we had to anyway but it's so much nice when it's offered!). Plenty of food for a midnight snack! Gotta watch the ordering... especially in cash places (apparently this place does accept credit card but doesn't like that) since I don't have an endless supply of USD and today's food cut my supply by just over 10% :(

After dinner we strolled down Kearny St down to the Montgomery BART station where I bought a shiny new prepaid travel card. Love those for the convenience! We took the BART back to the airport so that we can get the hotel shuttle from the airport. Turns out the BART ride from Montgomery BART station to the SFO airport costs USD 8.95. For 2 people, that was 17.90. Uber was definitely cheaper and more convenient! Hotel to Chinatown for USD 21.48, no transfer required. If you were alone, than it'd not be worth it, but 2 or more pax, Taxis, Uber etc would be the way to go in such an instance as we were travelling out of city.

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