Tuesday, February 17, 2009

My Two Valentines

We spent Valentine's Day playing tourist in San Francisco. The ferry is not too far from us and it's such a convenient way to get into the city. We took a high-speed commuter ferry and until we reached the harbor, it was a fairly quick and smooth ride in. The few rolling bumps we did get, Munch loved because they reminded her of a roller coaster.

We disembarked at Pier 39/Fishermans' Wharf. It's been ages since I was last in that area. The plan was to go to the aquarium on the wharf, but it was lunchtime and I happened to spot a Rainforest Cafe- we've never been, so how could I pass that up? It would certainly be a memorable lunch for Munch. She loved all the animals that we saw upon entering and there was a huge waterfall in the main dining room. AudioDad thought it reminded him of something you'd see in Vegas. The food turned out to be decent for a theme/chain restaurant- I actually really liked the lettuce wraps I ordered (they're on the appetizer menu). The only thing Viv didn't like was that the gorillas went a little crazy every fifteen minutes or so-

Next we headed over to see the famous sea lions that bask on the wharf. Munch and AudioDad have this thing where they make "ork, ork" noises at each other, but Munch has never really seen the real thing-

Next stop was the aquarium. Their main attraction is a series of underwater tunnels- the Munchkin kept asking where the whales were as she hopped back and forth between the parallel moving and regular walkways.

And we loved the touch tanks- most larger aquariums are always so crowded, Munch hardly gets a chance to explore. Here we were able to spend a good chunk of time, and Munch was able to see and touch the animals we've been reading about in one of her books about tidepools.

Since it was early and our return ferry wasn't for a couple of hours, we walked down the Embarcadero to the SF Ferry Building/Marketplace. It's home to a weekly farmers' market, several outposts of good restaurants, and other delicious food merchants. Munch and I were especially looking forward to some gelato from Ciao Bella. She got the Scharffenberger chocolate, AudioDad picked the cookies & cream, and I got a sampler of several flavors- zabaglione (my standard here), key lime with graham cracker bits (yum!), and an incredible pear sorbetto.

We did a little more wandering in the kitchenware and bookstore before boarding the ferry home-

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