10:45 train from Sunnyvale to Milbrae. At the Sunnyvale station an Indian family was confused about where to board the train, and the 20-something very tall young man of the group offered them the theory that it didn't matter which side. So I asked them in my theater voice where they were going. "San Francisco". I pointed and told them "the other side". Tall boy and his older male relatives later figured out the ticket machine was there for a reason, so I was spared giving them that hint.
It's two tracks divided by a tall iron fence with spiked tips. Pretty clearly not "board anywhere". But in their favor were two things - the signs saying "San Francisco" and "San Jose" are only visible when you are on that side of the fence, toward the middle of the platform. And there was a defective pedestrian crossing alarm - the barrier was down, the lights were flashing and the bells were ringing for half an hour after trains had left the station.
At Milbrae I switched to BART, because the Powell Street station is practically underneath Fred's hotel, so no bus xfer needed.
That was a mistake. BART underground is horribly loud. Screeching and roaring noises, I don't know how commuters can stand it.
I arrived almost an hour early, so I walked around the area, watched a cable car get turned on the turntable. Back in the day, the dozen or so people waiting to catch the cable car would help turn it, but now the line is way long, and it's done by one Muni operator. Two, if you count the guy who pulls the turntable's release lever.
Lots of eye candy. Lots of women in boots. It was very cold, I'm glad I wore my Seahawks stadium jacket. On Market Street one guy shouted from across the street for me to take it off, but I had two other guys compliment it, and say they were from Seattle.
Got to Fred's hotel a few minutes early, called him and he came right down. We have a little bit of history, some of it oblique. In the 60's, Fred's family lived near the lake, and somehow my older sister knew some of them, and would go there to watch the hydroplane races. She got me invited there once for dinner, and one time Fred and his brothers took us to 13 Coins, where I learned what Antipasto was. While I was at the UW and for years after we were involved in Israeli folkdancing. And someone I met there and was "intimate" with once - which was enough for us to know not to do it again - not long afterward married Fred, and they had a child, and a few years later they divorced. I also dated his sister for a little while, but she was significantly older than me and invoked the robbing the cradle clause.
I told Fred I wasn't feeling well, and couldn't stay long, so we took a walk to an Israeli bakery a few blocks away in SOMA aka the sketchy part of town. Taboon is very Israeli, which means it runs on instinct. There are no signs saying what those items are in the display, (except "pareve") or what they cost, so if you don't already know you're SOL. Fred knew what the filled donut-like object was that he got, but I had no idea until the cashier told me that the filled challah twist in my hand was chocolate filled. It was very good, though. I could only get through half, wrapped the rest and put it in my jacket pocket for later.
As we were chatting, looking out the window, I saw a fight between two young black men, the one who was losing was also losing his pants, and ended up running down the block in just his boxers. As I said, sketchy part of town. Walking down the block we had to dodge a large black man who was yelling racist obscenities at a petite white woman who apparently had chosen to ignore him.
Which illustrates my theory that it isn't prejudice if it's reinforced by actual events and behaviors.
After looking at some interesting domed buildings (Fred was an architecture major) we walked to my bus stop and bid each other farewell and a happy holiday (in Hebrew). I wish I could have spent more time, both with Fred and in the city, but that BART ride had capped the "out of it" feeling.
Took the bus to Caltrain and Caltrain to Sunnyvale. Did a little Ingress on the way, and before I got my car I hit some portals near the plaza.
On the theory that one should not go grocery shopping when hungry, I went to Safeway, got most of what was on my list. Very disappointed that they were out of egg nog and had every Marie C dinner except the one I wanted. So I got some TGIF wings and a container of in-house cold breaded chicken dark meat parts.
On to Lucky's for egg nog and Marie C. And limes - I had forgotten limes. Small but 25 cents each so okay.
Home, put stuff away. No deliveries but the rent bill was in the park mail slot. Lower than the last couple - looks like somehow I used less gas. I wonder why (NOT).
Signed up for the $40/month SlingTV and watched MNF live. My TV says the image is 4K, but there were times when it looked interlaced when I know it wasn't. A kind of slow motion effect, but very subtle. Could be my wifi can't keep up, could be the NVidia can't. After football season I'll go back to the $20 SlingTV offering.
Dinner was the cold chicken and cole slaw. Mint chocolate chip ice cream sandwich for dessert. And some unleaded egg nog. A little watery, but tasted fine. I add nutmeg for the alleged hallucinogenic effect.
Plans for tomorrow:
11 am optometry appointment. My last 2 ophthalmology visits showed my left eye is no longer 20-20, and lately it has been bothering me more, and maybe is a reason for the increased migraines. I wear readers at work, so switching to prescriptions may be a good idea.
After that, off to Amazon and give Quang his 2 calendars
Print a rent check