The Storks of Böbs

The Storks of Böbs
A Very Fine Pair

Gone West 1

We have taken the opportunity to take a late Spring break to travel a part of the USA that I have never been able to visit, the Wild West. I have been to the South of  San Francisco quite a few times but never North of that fine city. So with this in mind we spoke to our friend Richard who lives in San Francisco and booked a slot with him to start off our holiday. It just happens that the MOMA is in town, so that is a bonus, but last time we visited we didn't get to visit the De Young (we went to the Golden Gate Park but we went on a Monday and it is closed on Mondays) so may be better luck this time. But enough of the future, we will start at the beginning and head out like many before us to visit pastures new.

So with out further a do lets get this show on the road.

21 May 2016

Was up at before the crack of dawn 03:30, washed and dressed. then went outside and sat on the balcony watching the sky starting to lighten up and the dawn chorus starting up, just a few short tweets and hoots at first but rising to a cacophony of bird song each one trying to out do the other.

Wonderful, but then it was time for the off.

Taxi to Lübeck HBhf and train to Hamburg  airport.

Waiting for a train

Arrived in plenty of time, no delays and sat around and waited for the Starbucks coffee stall to open, we had a coffee I bought the newspaper to see what wee would be missing this weekend (it is the start  of the Lübecker stadt festival), We then got our bags, goods and chattels together and headed up to the check in. We had decided to travel to San Francisco via Copenhagen but our bags would be checked through all the way to our destination. We got checked in then through security, this was surprisingly easy with only Linda having to open up her Cpap machine and have a passed security sticker stuck on it.
We were called forward to gate C33, we were then boarded onto a bus to take us to our airplane, this was SAS flight SK646 a turboprop aircraft ofthe type ATR 72-600 a short haul machine that SAS use between Hamburg and Copenhagen (and other European cities).
Our Turboprop transport

The patchwork of crops over SH

The flight was an up and down affair, so sooner were we up, than we were on our way down. We passed over the patchwork fields of Northern Schleswig-Holstein, that in spring are the yellow rape and green  early wheat.

We crossed the belt and over the islands, and this time passing over the massive Belt Brücke, that now connects the mainland Denmark with Sweden via various Danish Islands, in February we had passed under it on the way to Gothenburg for our friend Kalles 60th.

The great thing about turboprops are that they don't fly so high and you are able to view the ground (or water) below, it was a very nice morning a bit of cloud but plenty of blue sky.
Landed and taxied to our gate and then into the Terminal.

Emptying the cargo, human and otherwise

We decided to go straight through to departure, We went to the boarding gate and had a cup of coffee and a sandwich, well it was 10:30 and we already been on the go for 7 hours. It was then onto SAS flight SK 935 (Astrid Viking) an Airbus A340-313E.

Linda on the way to the plane

We were right at the rear, I in the last row with Linda directly in front of me, it was close to the toilets and also the galley so no problem getting drinks and getting rid of them. The flight was very uneventful, with only a small amount of  light turbulence over Canada, about 15 minutes. The meal and snacks were ok, if uninspired, the main meal (no choice) was chicken curry (not very spicy) salad, cheese and biscuits and a coconut cake desert. In between they came around with nuts and any amount of tea, coffee and soft drinks (you have to pay for alcoholic drinks), we also had a wrap (tomato and basil pesto sauce) about an hour before landing. The entertainment was good, I watched the Woman in a Van, excellent movie, Ice age 3, I just love Sid, Scrat and Manny, I am a great fan of the Ice Age series and Peter Pan, ok, but I was expecting more, I think JM Barrie's original was far better. I also dozed and listened to some very good opera. Watching the progress on the individual screen as we crossed the North Atlantic, Greenland, Canada crossing the border about over vancouver and then down the West Coast before Landing at San Francisco 15 minutes before schedule.

Unlike the last time we arrived, the border control formalities had been speeded up, no delays, nice and friendly and we were out to the baggage carousel and into the arrival lounge. A quite easy, smooth and painless trip from Stodo to SFA.

Linda texted to our friend Richard, who came and picked us up in his brand spanking new red Ford, he whisked us off to the apartment that he keeps for visitors in his large wonderful house on Dolores Street.

We got our bags unloaded had a short discussion as what to do with what remained of our first day in the USA. It was decided he would drive us up to Bernal Heights to have a wonderful view down over the City and the sweep of the bay.

Towards the Golden Gate

Oakland Bridge

Down Town San Francisco
Next he drove us to a nice little diner called Chow, very close to the Mint, on the corner of Church and Market street.
The CA Mint

We dined and chatted, I had my first American flank steak of the trip, done rare, nice and juicy with French fries, grilled tomato and washed down with a couple of beers. Linda had a bowl of Thai noodles with chicken and steak, with peanuts in a spicy lime, chili,garlic broth she drank a nice Peruvian red with it, Richard had an Organic Greens, strawberries, goat cheese, quinoa, lemon salad, washed down with a beer.

Chow is a small chain of 4 restaurants in CA, that prides itself on serving homely organic food, well cooked in a friendly atmosphere. It was so good that Linda and I decided to breakfast there the next day.
But for now it was time to head back to the apartment and a good nights sleep, we had after all been of the road for 24 hours and were more than a little weary.

1 comment:

  1. That all sounds wonderful! Have a nice trip!!