Tag Archives: Alcatraz

The Honeymooners – From the Streets of San Francisco to the Hills of Tennessee

24 Jul

Normally, I wouldn’t write about the return to Tennessee, but a couple of things happened that I found interesting. We scheduled an early flight home in order to arrive at a decent hour. Necole had to go to work the next day, and both of us were anxious to see her daughter. We missed her and everyone else back home.

This meant that we had to wake up 3 o’clock. That’s 5 o’clock in our time zone, but, by now, we had adjusted to San Francisco time. Getting up that early is never fun. We got into the car at 4 o’clock. It was dark, and we were fuzzy on the details of the route. I studied the route the night before, but I don’t think clearly before daylight. This meant that we needed the lady inside Necole’s phone – the one that tells us which way to go.

She took us through the heart of San Francisco. It was dark. The traffic lights were blinking. It was us and a few taxis. One of America’s major cities was deserted. In a few hours, these same streets would be packed with traffic and pedestrians, and we had them all to ourselves. It felt surreal. On some level, I felt like Robert Neville.

We didn’t run into any mutants wearing sunglasses and got to the airport in plenty of time. On the way, I said something about the flight not being delayed because it was one of the first ones out. I was wrong. This meant that the connection a Midway in Chicago was going to be tight.

At least, we thought it was going to be tight. After we boarded the plane for Nashville, the vehicle that pushed the plane away from the gate slipped a break and slammed into it and cracked the nose. Yep, our plane was in a head on collision while sitting still. We sat on the thing until a maintenance crew replaced the nose.

What’s interesting about that? Although the pilot tried to reassure everyone, it’s a strange feeling to go up in a plane that just had a new nose put on it. What if the workers didn’t tighten the bolts? What if the new nose fell off? All kinds of stuff goes through your mind.

Well, the nose job worked, and we made it back to Tennessee. My mom picked us up at the airport and had a big homemade meal waiting for us. We had drank wine, eaten fancy meals and had a few ordinary meals. Now, it was time to get some southern food and get ready for the rest of our lives.

I can’t have a post without a picture, so here is the last one I took. It is the view of San Francisco from Alcatraz.Honeymoon 043

Thanks for reading about our honeymoon. Regular Surrounded by Imbeciles stuff will return in the next post.

The Honeymooners – We Made It In-N-Out of Alcatraz

23 Jul

The last full day of our honeymoon had arrived. At some point, we needed to pack and get ready for the flight home. However, we had something to do before that – tour Alcatraz. I was definitely excited about it because every trip needs to include a historic site. Necole said she was excited about it. At first, I thought she was saying that for my benefit, but, as time passed, I started to think that she really was fired up for this.

We had tickets for the 1:00 tour and needed to kill time before loading onto the boat. Walking out of our hotel, we instinctively looked for a place to have breakfast. All we saw was a Mexican restaurant. This wasn’t Santa Fe, so we weren’t down for that. Just as we were about to go back and talk to the concierge, I saw it. Angels sang as I looked upon an IHOP. Pancakes. Eggs. Hashbrowns. Here we come.

When that was over, we walked a block to the wharf. Sunday morning is a lot less hectic than Saturday afternoon. People strolled along peacefully. Others jogged from one end to the other. Up ahead, Necole saw a guy who looked just like Marlon Brando. I mean a living Marlon Brando, not the skeletal version. In all, it was a completely different atmosphere.

We took advantage of this and strolled hand in hand to the site of the Louis Vuitton Cup.Honeymoon 038

It is a preliminary round for the America’s Cup and was being held in San Francisco Bay. I’m not sure how someone watching a sailing race, but there was a lot of other cool stuff to do.

Finally, it was time to go to Alcatraz, one of my favorite places to tour. It’s amazing to walk through the prison and wonder what its inhabitants went through. This was definitely the end of the line in the prison world. Being sent here meant you were the baddest of the bad. From the island, the sounds of the free world can be easily heard. In some ways, that had to be the hardest part.

The prison wasn’t that large and didn’t have as many guards as one would think. The water was the ultimate guard. Although land is a short distance away, the waters are too treacherous to swim across. A few people tried to escape. Most never got off the island. Those who did have never been heard from again.Honeymoon 040

We escaped the island and found ourselves back on a crowded wharf. However, we weren’t wandering around not knowing where to go. We had a goal, and it was In-N-Out Burger. Everyone told us about the greatness of these hamburgers, and they weren’t lying. Necole and I both agreed that it was one of the most awesome hamburgers we have ever had. After lunch, we planned on riding a trolley, which would have been our second visit to a piece of preserved history, but the line was an hour long. After an entire week of eating, drinking and sightseeing. We were ready to pack it in.

There was one other thing to do, however. We asked the concierge if there was a place to have dinner that wasn’t touristy and wasn’t seafood. She led us to an Italian restaurant on the non-wharf side of the hotel. It was quiet and peaceful. The type of place we needed to have the first argument of our marriage.