Mary Branscombe (marypcb) wrote,
Mary Branscombe

Alcatraz at last

We've been coming to the Bay Area for nearly a decade (I could date my first trip by when Apple launched the XServe RAID) and we've sailed past Alcatraz many times on ferry trip to Sausalito or on pleasure cruises hither and yon, but we've never actually got off the boat there before. It's a shame we didn't have the sun we'd been missing all week in our underground bunker conference sessions, but it was very atmospheric in the fog and if you're gong to photograph crumbling concrete and unexpected succulents, moody lighting is good. If I took the atmosphere of despair and redemption and murder and music seriously it would be creepy and the voice of the prison guard on the audio tour telling you where to go and when to stop has an institutionalising effect - I wonder what it does for the ex-inmate author who's signing his books in the gift store? - but it's an impressive place to visit (possibly avoid high summer with bird guano and flies) and I'm glad we went.

Chai in Smaovar, getting stuck in the game traffic, sushi from Whole Foods (and scones and coffee from there in the morning), dropping off books at Bookbuyers, working at Peets, meeting voidampersand and spikeiowa for dinner; it's nice to drop into our regular bay area routine ;-) And now for a nice anniversary weekend trip to Yosemite!

Tags: food, travel, wine

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