Fruit Travels: A Day in San Francisco

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I can't believe I actually forgot to blog about this one amazing day when my family and I took a spontaneous day trip to San Francisco. We were attending to other things somewhere in Northern California but we were fortunate to have a full day to do whatever and my Papi-san always wanted to go to the National Shrine of St. Francis of Assisi in North Beach, San Francisco.

So, off we go to San Francisco!


We got to the shrine a little too early that we had some time to kill. There was a coffee shop right across the street so we decided to chill there for a bit instead of risking death by intoxicating car farts. We went in there, got some croissants to fill the belly and got some extra quarters to pay the parking meter since I only had like 50 cents worth in my purse (this is why I live in the suburbs, so I don't have to worry about parking meters). Writing this post now, I'd like to take a moment to bang my head on the wall for NOT realizing that the simple little coffee shop that we went into called, Caffe Trieste, is in fact, a historical place for being the first to introduce the espresso in the West Coast back in the 1950's. Caffe Trieste is a favorite spot among famous poets, artists and writers---some of their famous patrons are Francis Ford Coppola, where it is said that he wrote most of the screenplay for The Godfather in this quaint coffeehouse, and Poet Laureate Jack Hirschman, where he gets his coffee fix frequently.

So yeah, I didn't take a picture of the place. What I did take though, was one picture and one picture only. I went to use their restroom and I thought, Hey that's pretty poetic to be on a restroom door.

numb to my heartbeat
feel time I can not

keep.


By the time we walked back to the car, the shrine had already opened. We had the shrine to ourselves for a good hour so I was able to take proper pics. I get shy when I take pictures inside a sacred place since I don't want to come off as being disrespectful to others while they are in prayer.



 Relics of St. Francis of Assisi and St. Clare of Assisi


La Porziuncola Nuova, a scaled replica of Saint Francis's Porziuncola in Assisi, Italy.



Being always the designated food strategist (absolutely made that title up), I had my mind set on a restaurant just around North Beach to grab some lunch. I was so worried, wondering where the restaurant could be and hoping that it wouldn't be a pain to find parking, especially that it was like 20 minutes 'til noon after we came out from the shrine.

Uhm, yeah. Call it luck but damn, I was outside Caffe Trieste and I somehow wanted to peak through the other corner of the street and ...Oh Em Gee, I found it! The restaurant was just a couple of shops down from the coffee shop.

The House


The House is a small restaurant but we were able to grab the last available table in the nick of time. Five minutes after we were seated, there were at least 5 other parties that were waiting to get a table. Phew!

A simple yet ingenious idea for their place mat.


The menu was simple, so we were able to order right away. I was totally blown away by the flavors, this is definitely a hidden gem in the neighborhood (well, not really since it's like, all over the internet now) and I highly recommend this place. The best time to visit would probably be on a weekday, right before noon or if you wouldn't mind waiting, you could maybe grab some late lunch.

Warm Wasabi House Noodles with Grilled Salmon--holy moley this was effin' goooddd.


Curry Noodles with Grilled Chicken


Grilled Sea Bass with Garlic Ginger Soy on the side.


Fried Chicken Sandwich


To burn off that sumptuous lunch, we decided to head out to the quaint (but very expensive) little town of Sausalito. Sausalito is located right next to the Golden Gate bridge so you could make this place into a nice little detour after you're done cussing at the fog for ruining your travel photos.


Call it pre-meditated but every time we get to visit this place, we always seem to park right next to this shop that serves fish & chips, ice cream and all sorts of comfort food.


So uhm, yea. After just having lunch, can we consider this as a light afternoon snack?

Fish & Chips



Pistachio ice cream


It's always fun to walk around a small town like Sausalito, 'coz you can always keep yourself entertained by finding niche shops.

 Aptly named Soxalito, the store sells all sorts of---you guessed it right---socks!



Sadly, I don't see so much of this brand's retail shops around but I still love you, my first fashion love, Benetton!


I went inside this novelty shop (of course, I forgot the name of it) that had some great souvenirs like these below.

They got some Lip Sh*t in my flavor...Asian Pear!


"Don't have UGLY children" 


"Coffee makes me poop"


Anyone interested in buying right-foot shoe lasts?


Oh my Lawdy, it's Rin Tin Tin! I want to collect ALL OF THEM!


Just the way I like it, some fog and overcast skies. It's perfect for a The Notebook type of love story or a The Conjuring sequel. You can get a great view of the San Francisco skyline (when it's not foggy or hazy, which is rare) while sitting on one of the benches.


Before we headed back to the car, I crossed the road (to where that guy above is standing at) to get a better view and look who popped up to bid me goodbye! A cute sea lion! You'll normally see them swim around the water, getting pestered by the seagulls.


Speaking of seagulls...there was this odd one in particular that was just staring at me, as if it was saying, "Go ahead, take a picture of me but make sure it's not my fat angle." It must have been used to a lot of tourists since it never flew away even if I was THIS close to it.


Do you know that I got mugged by a seagull in Sea World, San Diego a few years back? Yeah, it was kinda traumatizing but they can be conniving feathery bastards when they want to be. Not hating...like, at all.


Toodles!

The Best of Haute Couture Fashion Week Fall/Winter 2014

Shangi Be the first to comment!
In the wake of terrible news such as the Malaysian Airlines plane that got shot down over Ukraine, the depressing situation over the Israel-Gaza conflict and a strong typhoon ripping through the northern part of the Philippines as well as other parts of Asia, my prayers go to all who have perished and to everyone affected by these sad news. Sigh, all I really want to do right now is to help everyone have a little pick-me-up to calm the nerves. 

Whenever I'm down and out, I try to think of beautiful clothes or down a couple of tubs of icecream. I know, it's kind of superficial but it does get my mind off the not-so-beautiful things in life, even just for an hour or so. Let's try to think of something beautiful, shall we?

The Haute Couture Fashion Week just wrapped up in Paris about a week ago and yes, there were yards of beautiful fabrics and silhouettes to chase the nightmares away. What I love about the haute couture collections is that the designers shine artistically, the seamstresses get to showcase the best of their skills, and you don't feel the pressure of commercialism in these collections. They just create what they feel like, no holds barred---there are no trends necessarily followed, although they may be a source of inspiration for the RTW (ready-to-wear) collections.

A peak of my personal favorites:

Valentino. This collection is all about cinched waists and natural shoulders, with an interesting set of soft, delicate fabrics held together with the prominent accessory, a double-wrap waist belt.






Atelier Versace. You can always count on Donatella Versace to bring out the sexy, sultry side of a woman. In this collection, boned waists, ball gowns, strategic cut-out silhouettes and some glittery body suits are all over the runway. There's even that gown with one pant on one leg, and I know it sounds odd but they nailed it. Sashey, Shante!





Chanel. Time for a sumptuous dose of tweed and beyond! I love the idea of how the heavily embroidered clothes are balanced out with beautiful silk bow flats. Ooh la la, check out the finale peace worn by the very pregnant model, Ashleigh Good! (fifth and sixth pic below)







Zuhair Murad. Make sure not to skip the leg exercises 'coz Mr. Murad wants the ladies to show off them lovely stems! The gowns are nothing less of breath-taking, accented with geometrical-shaped buckle belts.






Giambattista Valli. Screw the Rose Parade, Giambattista's got it covered with floral appliques, garden floral prints (perfectly and unexpectedly matched with stripes) and silk shirts on ombré ruffled skirts. It's all in the details, baby!






Elie Saab. Uhm, yea. You're never going to get an unbiased opinion from me when it comes to this guy. He is the Lord of all unimaginably dreamy gowns. This is yet another collection that I am completely googley-eyed about! I simply have no words.






I have a confession to make. Every time Elie Saab's Haute Couture collection comes out, I always skip to the last piece...because he makes the most coveted wedding gowns ever. It's like he dives into every woman's dream, puts it to paper and simply creates the most beautiful, feminine shapes and patterns.

All photos courtesy of style.com
Phew, okay. I am definitely in a better mood now. Even if these wonderful creations didn't do anything to cheer you up, remember that you can build your own happy place. It could be filled with adorable animals doing unusual tricks, laughing babies, favorite cities to travel someday (or have traveled to), inside jokes that only you and your closest friends can understand, or a second chance in life.

The world can be such a gloomy, dreary place to live in but it'll only get darker if you put your own light out. Keep on shining, my minions!


Toodles!


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