Well, after my anticipated visit to California turned out to be…well, a damp squib, to put it mildly, at least for the first 3 weeks, the arrival of Bhasky at Sunnyvale turned out to be quite the lucky break for me, in terms of sightseeing.
After planning and re-planning and goofing up the entire itinerary by not carrying Bhasky’s mobile number with me, I ended up pretty much wasting a little more than half a day on Saturday. But then, once I caught up with Bhasky, we were well on our way to our first check-point, the Golden Gate Bridge.
On the way, we were lucky enough to pass through the famed steep streets of San Francisco. Now this is a sight seen to be believed. The streets, I think 9-10 of them in parallel, are inclined at around 70-75 degrees in angle. Now while this may not seem too much on paper, when one actually gets to sit in a car either going up or down these streets, it is quite an experience. The view from one intersection which turned out to be the highest point on this line of streets, is quite unbelievable. One can see down the straight street straight out into the Bay where lots of these yachts and boats with white sails looked like butterflies against a dark blue sky. simply beautiful, is probably the only way to put it across.
Once we pass that, and got onto the marvel of modern engineering that is called the Golden Gate Bridge which connects San Francisco to Marin County. It was the longest suspension bridge when it was completed in 1937, and currently stands at 9th in the list of longest bridges, no mean achievement that. Well, for the academically interested, more information regarding the bridge can be found here.
In terms of sheer splendour and grandeur from a modern engineering perspective, I personally haven’t seen anything else with my own eyes and therefore the drive over the bridge was quite special for me. After making a brief stopover at the Bridge Viewing Vista, and taking the mandatory snaps with ourselves in the foreground, with the backdrop of the bridge, Bhasky and me set off on a little off-beat road which was highly recommended by a colleague of mine at the Concord office.
Now this turned out to be a very good decision, because we ended up having almost a completely side-long view of the Golden Gate which probably would not have been otherwise possible unless we took the ferry across the Bay itself. We ended up having a small walk on the cliffs, bumping into an old unused lighthouse, all with its own collection of snaps. Altogether quite a nice experience.
After all this, we were quite cold considering the heavy winds in and around the bridge, and famished considering that it had been around 5 odd hrs since the last morsel. The rest of the trip wouldn’t make for interesting reading unless one considers a Krispy Kreme, WalMart and a Safeway shopping experience interesting. BTW, we had dinner at Saravana Bhavan, can you believe that? More of these in my next post. This one’s dedicated to San Francisco and the Golden Gate Bridge.
Pictures of the trip at –