Thursday, April 28, 2016


Day 2 = so much walking and sweating and panicking lol

Let's just start out with the fact that it was 75 degrees which isn't even that hot but it felt SO hot. And I wasn't wearing socks because I forgot to pack some ugh. Fortunately my feet surprisingly didn't get blisters or chafe or anything, just got really really sweaty feet.

I may or may not have missed the train by 2 MINUTES. Ugh. I had to buy my ticket super fast and then ran past the entrance to the other side, so that sucked. So I just checked out Sunnydale. Sunydale is super new and clean and empty and filled with lots and lots of Mercedes, BMW's....actually like everywhere I went in California was filled with rich people...I found a two story Target to keep me busy. I love Target so much. Sometimes I just go and walk around because it is so entertaining!

Once I got to the very end of the line of the Caltrain, I walked to the San Fransisco MUNI station (municipal transportation aka subway) which is like right across to the street and took the N line (? idk man ?) to the end of the line: Ocean Beach. WHY DID I WEAR TENNIS SHOES?! Dang it. If I could go back, I would have brought a swimsuit and laid there all day. That would have been ideal.

After a couple of hours of walking the beach, I got back on the MUNI and rode it back East a few stops so that I was right under the Golden Gate Bridge park. I then walked for awhile lol so that I could get to it. I stopped in a random little Asian bakery and got an egg tart. I really wanted one of the coconut buns but I had no idea if I was supposed to get one myself or let them sure me or what and they thought I could speak Chinese so I kinda just pointed to the closest thing. Also I mean it is still a sugar pastry so it was okay haha

Once I got there I walked around until I found the Japanese Tea Garden. I didn't realize you had to pay though !!! Ugh. $6 man. Oh well. It was gorgeous, but a lot smaller than I thought it would be, so kinda disappointed. Honestly the rest of the park was gorgeous too, so I wish I could've just spent more time wandering around the park.

I finally walked a BAJILLION miles to Baker Beach to see the Golden Gate Bridge in the daylight. Walking on the side of the rode is kinda sketch tbh, but I mean it worked lol and I didn't get kidnapped!

Ended in the same spot as last night! 

From there it was about 6, and I was tired and hungry, but taking public transportation would take me 2 HOURS not including walking another hour to get back to the hotel..... But having my dad come pick me up would take an hour. So we tried to meet in the middle somewhere. I rode a public bus for the first time ever! ...and turned out to be the wrong I had to transfer again to a different bus. Then frantically used google maps to find a BART station (super fast underground train that runs more South West than the Caltrain) which was so confusing because there was only a MUNI where it was supposed to be, but it was under the street so I found it eventually. I then took it down to Daly City where my dad picked me up (thank goodness I chose the right line and made the correct transfer). We decided to take the scenic route back to the hotel: right down the West coast.

And then had In-n-Out for dinner. 

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Day 1 in Cali: Stanford

I've always wanted to take one of those "finding yourself" kind of trips to India alone and help in orphanages and just travel. However, I don't really know if I'll ever be able to do that, so traveling to Northern California kind of alone is the closest I will get till then.

+senioritis is kicking in and I really didn't want to go to school

Left Kansas City amidst an early (5 freaking o'clock AM) rain shower, and greeted by clear skies and mid 70's in San Jose.

Isn't it refreshing when the airplanes have wifi?
Yes. Yes it is.

2018-2020 BYU TRIP?????
I want to visit the Grand Canyon sooooo bad. That sounds like a super fun vacation with roommates and friends in college! Like 8 hours away, camping, hiking--I'm so pumped.

Once we landed we went to Costco for lunch (best cheap food lol), and then looked up how to take the CalTrain--one of MANY forms of transportation I would try this week. It didn't leave for another hour, so I just hung out at Costco for an hour while I waited for the next train.

Look how pretty!!!
All the flowers here were so cheap and gorgeous.
Also I got my Madrid Birkenstocks in and I love them so much!

#1 reason why to let your kids take a trip when they are 17 or younger:
still considered a "child" and tickets are half priced. yay.

Double-decker Caltrain.
So nice because up top you don't have to sit by anyone.

First stop, Palo Alto aka hometown of Stanford.

This campus was way different than I thought it would be. It is huge. I also didn't picture it as being so outdoors-y and like palm tree dessert feel. It's super pretty though, and everyone bikes everywhere because it's so spread out and it gets crazy with all the bikes! I totally forgot that California was still in the middle of a drought, so none of their fountains were on which was sad because fountains make everything way prettier. I totally just walked into one of the buildings and then wandered around looking at students in class lol. Guess what? They all look completely normal! I don't know why I always think otherwise, it's just cool to see so many students from Stanford, and Harvard, and MIT, and Princeton, and Dartmouth, and they are all super normal. I wanted to go on a tour of the campus, but it wouldn't be until 3:15 so I found a group walking around and joined them. Turn out it was a prospective student tour and they were all juniors with their parents, so it was a little awkward but I really didn't care.

Although not a religious school, they have a large church on campus with huge mosaics shipped over from Italy with thousands and thousands of pieces and colors. It was really cool because once we were inside they had ton of stained glass windows, but the only one that just happened to have the sun shining behind it was this one:

Not important whatsoever, but there were TONS of caterpillars everywhere! It was awesome. When I was little I was obsessed with bugs, and I'm not like crazy about them now, but I will still pick up caterpillars and butterflies and lady bugs and stuff haha

After the tour, I was super hot and wanted to stop walking everywhere because my feet were starting to blister. I seriously walked SO far that first day. My calfs were sore the next day which is pathetic, but also means I really really did walk far. Also I didn't have any water so I was kinda just dying in the heat lol. Luckily Palo Alto is an adorable town that was actually interesting! I went to CREAM, bought some razors at CVS because hair legs and no razors are not a good mix. and then soaked my feet in the fountain. There were kids playing in the water so that was okay right? There were like 5 college kids by the fountain hard core judging me haha, judge on man.

I had some time before my dad got off from work and could pick me up at the Caltrain station in mountain view, so I made a random stop along the line. It comes every hour, so I just hung around the city by the California Avenue station. I thought that this station was going to be no. I found that most of the stations between Mountain View up like 5-6 stations were very very wealthy cities with brand new buildings and shops, but pretty much empty. Kinda creepy honestly. Like they were gorgeous places but there were no people...I think I ended up just sitting on a bench and relaxing.

We stayed at a Residence Inn Marriot, so it was more casual which is nice, but they also upgraded my dad to "pent house" so I slept upstairs and he slept downstairs which was nice. Didn't have to sleep on the couch like I originally thought lol

Super fancy dinner snacks!
Mostly just pumped because GUAC
I love guac so much.

After, we decided to visit the Oakland temple. It was about an hour away from the hotel, but I've never been there so I really wanted to go. It is gorgeous! Just like every other temple. This one was cool though, because it didn't have an angel Moroni on the top, and you could go up a level and there were flowers and an amazing view of the city.

After that, we took a detour back to the hotel to see the Golden Gate Bridge. It was hard to take pictures at night and it was freezing being so close to the water, but it was still cool.