Sunday, May 09, 2010

Biking in San Francisco

Today I went back to San Francisco a couple of years after that 2008 January when the ASSA conference was hosted here. And for all it's worth, I decided to take my bike; however, I was not sure if that would be wise or not, considering all the hills around. To my relief, biking around proved to be quite fascinating, either crossing the Golden Gate or just gliding through cars and buses downtown. Riding the Caltrain between Menlo Park and San Fran was also nice, it reminded me a lot of Europe. Biking from the train station was nice although I hit a lot of traffic and huge crowds of pedestrians (tourists) that were walking in the bike lane. Fisherman's Warf was my first stop and memories started to come back. Bought some souvenirs, streched my legs and went onward towards the Golden Gate. The wind was getting stronger and I started to regret my precarious clothing and lack of warmer stuff. The climb to the bridge was OK but the wind on it was terrible. Especially around the main pylons it was extremely strong and almost tossed me over a couple of times. Sausalito (the other side of GG) was nice with hills (no vegetation, a la Cluj) and I climbed all the way to the viewpoint. Took some shots there, had a sandwich and head back, since the wind factor was too much for me already (my hands literally frozed-up on the camera). On my way back took a couple of nice shots of kids playing soccer and some canine friends, and decided to head to Market Street and downtown. Here it was nice to see some restaurants where I had some nice dinners with my gf and our former hotel. All, very much the way I remembered them.Biking my way on the 4th street to the Caltrain station was a bit interesting since there was no bike lane but a highway exit; however, I made it just fine (next time I will go around, using Embarcadero). Great ride and nice experience. SF is very vibrant and one of the nicer cities that I've experienced in the US.

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