Sunday, July 14, 2013

I Left My Heart......

Well, you know the rest of the song.... in San Fran-cis-co...... What a trip.  For those who don't know, the Garden Bloggers get together every year for a Spring Fling.  Last year was the first time I was able to go.  It was close by in Asheville, making it very convenient.  This year it was in San Francisco.  My first time in California and boy did I feel like I was in a NEW place!
My trip started quite early, up at 2:30 AM and off to the airport by 3 AM.  Traveling from SC I went through Charlotte, NC, changing planes and meeting up with fellow blogger and traveling companion, Daricia.  We got into SF mid-morning CA time.  Lucky for us we were able to check into our rooms early.  After dropping off our gear, we took to exploring the city and finding a spot for lunch.
View from my hotel window
 I felt a little like a country bumpkin, in awe with all the sights.  I was on the 25th floor and the views were incredible.
View to the right from my window- Bay Bridge in sight!
 The architecture in the city was wonderful -- look at this great detail work, remember it is at the top end of the building.

Lunch was at a Tea House in Yerba Buena Gardens.  What a glorious spot to sit outside and enjoy the day.
 The planting material was bold.  Here by the water feature was a large grouping of Cyperus papyrus.  
Walking around after lunch we found some green spaces, little nooks where one could sit, relax, and enjoy nature.  Daricia and I were drawn to the purple blooms.  So many of the plants we were seeing were new and unfamiliar to us.
A courtyard nestled between some tall skyscrapers.
 See what  I mean?  Isn't this an unusual bloom?  Gorgeous, love the color, but I don't know what it is.  Soon the jet lag was bringing out the silliness.  THIS is a California plant.


This a rare California Bird.  

We walked all the way down to the water to the Bay Bridge.  What a beautiful sight.

This is certainly a city on a hill.  We must have walked about 3 miles, along the waterfront, then heading back up to the hotel.  The Customs House and Port Authority buildings were stately.   There was a market along the street by the piers, bustling with activity.

There were so many interesting things to take in, plants, buildings, carvings, people, and landmark sights.
urns/ pillars flanking a doorway, just amazing

Color 
 We met Julie at her hotel and wandered around Chinatown.   There were a couple shops with bronze sculptures...this one caught my eye.  Wouldn't this go well with my mermaid?

Julie was in a different hotel the first night and it was right at the edge of Chinatown, half a block from the Dragon Gate.  We took advantage of the location and explored Chinatown.
Dragon Gate, entrance to Chinatown
Lanterns and colorful decorations really added to the scenery.


I really like the top of this church.   I am not sure which church it is, somewhere in Chinatown vicinity.

Sightseeing around San Francisco needs to be a trip unto itself.
 Did I see Fisherman's Wharf? No.
Ghirardelli chocolate factory? No.
Ride a Cable Car? No.
Go to Alcatraz? No.
Go across the Golden Gate Bridge? YES!
The bridge was encased in fog, making it difficult to see it.  Seems as though every sighting of the Golden Gate Bridge there was fog.  Surprise.

Everyone on the bus was trying to capture the perfect picture of the bridge. 

My camera battery was low and blinking red as I tried my hand at getting the perfect photo --- one chance to get the shot!

While traveling across one of the bridges we could see Alcatraz Island and San Francisco Bay.  Traveling by bus, I was turned around as to where we were.   Like the California birds, California plants, we were IN California....let's leave it at that.  


Another day, another view of the Golden Gate Bridge.  The fog was really something to see, hanging on the bridge.

Riding to another garden, even the cement walls were fun to see.  


I felt like I was in total tourist mode, in awe of all around me.  This was just an introduction to being in San Francisco for the Garden Blogger's Spring Fling.  Stay tuned for the gardens we toured.  We arrived on Thursday and returned Sunday night on the red-eye.  It was an action packed garden filled weekend.

©Copyright 2013 Janet. All rights reserved. Content created by Janet for The Queen of Seaford. words and photos by Janet,The Queen of Seaford.

50 comments:

  1. I'm so looking forward to your Fling posts. I wish I had come in early on Thursday too. Hopefully, I'll see more of you in Portland next year. You captured that feeling of everything being so unfamiliar to you perfectly in this post.

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    1. Alison, thanks. I hope to get to Portland!

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  2. Yes it was -- a great city. And a great place for a Fling. Great to see you again, Janet.

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    1. Helen, it was wonderful seeing you again too!

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  3. love your photos and commentary! Can't wait for more.

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  4. What a great start to your busy, fun-filled weekend. I am looking forward to reading all that I missed. I've got next year's fling dates on my calendar and am going to do everything I can to make it!

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    1. Karin, it was a perfect start to the Fling. I sure hope you come next year!

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  5. You did what I wanted to do so bad. You got out and walked in the city. Even though I was staying two more days, we never visited the sights SF is known for. We did lunch in wine country though which was a nice treat, but were on such a tight schedule, I took no photos. You got some nice photos from around the area. It was a wonderful trip and I will await your garden photos.

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    1. Donna@GWGT, It was fun to walk around and see some of the sights...though I missed a lot! Guess I need to go back.

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  6. So cool! I've never been to Cali but one day....

    Wow on all the fog but you got the shot!

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  7. I missed being there with you all..and am loving all the posts. gail

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  8. What a grand city! I loved the mermaids but felt sorry for them out there on the sidewalk next to a big rig.

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    1. Carolyn, I was glad they had a blank background to get a clearer photograph of them.

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  9. California plant! I've got to remember that, makes everything much easier. Great photos of SF. Very much enjoyed meeting you at the Fling.

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    1. Jason, enjoyed meeting you and your wife as well!

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  10. Oh thank you, Janet, for taking us on a walkabout in one of the world's great cities. Other flingers have focused entirely on the gardens, which is wonderful, but this post satisfies a deep craving for me.

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    1. Ricki, well, thanks for coming along. It was a great Fling, can't wait for Portland.

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  11. Ooh, your feet and legs must have been tired after all that hilly walking the first day. What a fun introduction to your first trip to San Fran. It was great to see you and Daricia and Julie there again, but I was sorry we didn't get to have a meal together this year. Next time!

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    1. Pam, you know those hills were pretty good and the heat added to it! I know you covered a lot after the Fling. We will do dinner again next time for sure!

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  12. Thanks for sharing a part of your trip. What lovely sights to see. It must have been a fun Fling.

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    1. Lona, it was a great Fling, you should think about coming to next one.

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  13. Dear Janet,
    oh what a wonderful trip! To meet fellow garden bloggers: bliss in itself - but in such a lovely city: double bliss! Great photos!

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    1. Britta, you should come to the next one. It was great to meet other bloggers.

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  14. Love your SF photos. I've been before and didn't have time to do non-garden sightseeing so it was great to see how many wonderful things you got to see. Great to see you, too!

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    1. Diana, thanks. It was great to see you again too.

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  15. You had me going for a minute there with the California plant, Janet:) I would have been a country bumpkin tourist right along with you, Janet, if I had gone--what a wonderful variety of sights you were able to visit! I'm glad you were able to take in some of the city's attractions before heading into the whirlwind of gardens. Looking forward to seeing more of your SF experience!

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    1. Rose, got you! hahaa I felt like I was totally out of my element with the new plants. I am glad to know you would have been country bumpkin with me.

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  16. I had so much fun with you in San Francisco, and I loved the California birds and plants, too! ;-) I just wish I had been on the same flight with you and Daricia, because your photo tour is incredible! What a great tour you made, and no wonder you were tired after! Some day, I will get the photos sorted. Looking forward to your garden posts!

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    1. Julie, it was a lot of fun wasn't it? Next year we will all have to fly together.

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  17. One of these days I will get to a fling, until then I rely on people like you to show me what I missed.

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    1. Les, Hope you do get to come to a Fling ....soon!

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  18. Look forward to reading your posts about the gardens. I love San Francisco (could happily live there) and wish it would have worked out to go to this year's fling to see gardens that aren't normally open to the public. Glad you and Daricia got to travel together!

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    1. DJ, it is a cool city, expensive as can be though. Hope you can come next time.

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  19. Fantastic trip, wonderful photos:) Greetings

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  20. I'm from CA and the rare California bird is a seagull. They're only rare in SC. :o) SF is an amazing city and well worth a trip back. Glad you went and had fun. I really want to go to a Fling eventually!

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    1. Tammy, it is a seagull?? no.. really? hahaha It was a lot of fun. Hope you can come to a Fling.

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  21. How fun! those flings sound like such a blast. Glad you got to do a little sight seeing, gorgeous city.. although I look forward to the gardens..

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    1. Marguerite, they are a blast! 2015 is to be in Toronto...maybe we will see you there!

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  22. So glad you had a fun time...I was unable to go and I love San fran...

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    1. Donna@GEV, You have to come now that you are retired!!!

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  23. Never being to SF or even California, I would have loved the Fling but it just did not work out for us this year. Looks like you two took great advantage of your legs on day 1 and I would have been right there with ya, from Country Bumpkin to the California flower! Wow on all the tall buildings and what fun to spot green below them...

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    1. Skeeter, it was the first time for me ...loved it! Come be a bumpkin in Portland!

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  24. Reading this makes me wish I could fly back right now. So much to see and so little time. But it was super to meet you at last!

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    1. Linda, I am glad we got to meet too. I feel as though I missed so much in SF...another trip would be great!

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