Monday, November 19, 2007

you tell me that you're sorry, didn't think I'd turn around...and say.

well i made it back from California safely. lemme tell ya, it was hard leaving San Francisco on Sunday morning. Such an amazing city it is. we spent the latter part of last week in the wine country. first a day in Sonoma, then hitting Napa valley on Friday. the weather was nothing short of perfect, starting with a cool mornings in the upper 40s, and warming up to the upper 60s by the afternoon. my favorite city along the way would have to be Healdesberg. It was like visiting Thomasville, Georgia but with all the charm and charisma one would expect in the wine country, complete with boutique shopping and some of the best food i have ever had.

We spent the weekend exploring San Francisco. Out hotel, The Palace, was fabulous and is one if not the oldest hotel in the city. I met up with an old friend from Atlanta that took us to the organic market at the Ferry Building on Saturday and of course a stroll through the Castro.

I cannot wait to go back and visit. and i can't wait for my wine to arrive in about a week.
We stayed at The Palace, in San Francisco, the oldest hotel in the city.
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The view from Sterling Winery, in Napa.
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Dinner at The Girl and the Fig in Sonoma, California
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This was one of my favorite wineries, called "Bella".
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We spent Thursday in Sonoma
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Dinner at the Benziger Winery
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Friday, November 16, 2007

and you see your gypsy

well hello! Greetings from Santa Rosa. It has been an incredible week out here in California, beginning with just a little bit of work and ending with much fun. I flew in Monday morning, and have spent the past few nights out in wine country. I forgot how beautiful it really is out here, and makes me not look forward to coming back to Atlanta. Here are a few of my observations:

  • San Francisco truly is a pedestrian city. The cars actually stop and allow people to walk in cross walks. a novel idea i know, but try the very same thing in Atlanta and you will surely be hit.
  • It is so clean out here. The cities, the streets, the parks. It makes Atlanta look like a dump.
  • The price of gas out here is only a little higher than Atlanta.
  • I know nothing about wine. After hitting the wineries of Sonoma yesterday, I still am baffled by how much goes into the wine making process. And how many factors can cause a wine to taste linear, jammy, spicy, chewy, smooth, and just about any other adjective to describe the taste.
  • With the recent oil spill in the bay in San Francisco, the mayor decides to take trip out of town as all hell breaks loose. and the people of San Fran were not happy. I found it interesting that the morning newscasters openly expressed their disdain on air. would that every happen in Atlanta?
We are off to hit Napa today then back into San Francisco for the weekend. As I am sitting in the Aroma Roasters cafe here in Santa Rosa, I hear Fleetwood Mac - Gypsy playing and know i am home.


Thursday, November 01, 2007

You'll flow down her river

I believe the moment we sat down last night, Jarrett and I both wished we had worn our Halloween costume from last weekend. You see, at the very last minute, Erik loaned us his Neptune and Mercury costumes that he and Flippen wore to Halloween in New Orleans several years ago. and boy were they great. only requiring the magic of a warm iron and my vietvanese tranny pedicurist to tackle our feet. we had to wear sandals you see. the party turned out to be really fun, despite the 45 degree weather and my scantily clad body. thank goodness the gays were smart enough to rent one of those air heater machines that i thought some queen would certainly mistake for a speaker box and an opportunity to really "get her fierce on".

with Halloween 2007 taking place in the middle of the week this year, Jarrett and I were looking for something fun to do. we quickly eliminated the possibility of going to one of the various haunted houses for fear of waiting in line of hours. and i will be the first to admit that i may not have been the most excited about his idea: to have dinner at Trader Vic's and attend their "Hulaween" party. in fact, i think i may have even chuckled under my breath. I quickly called my parents to inquire about this place tucked away in the bottom of the Hilton Hotel downtown only to have my father reply, "Oh that place has been around for 30 years, I bet they haven't even changed the oil in the pans". now that is encouraging. but then again, I thought, "Why not?".

There is not doubt the place is a bit campy, kitschy, cheesy, and all of the those adjectives that can be inserted to describe a place that instantly transports you back into the 70s, completed with Tommy Bahama shirts, bamboo walls and ceilings, and Hawaiian themed decor all in major abundance. I felt like i was in that scene from "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas" where they are on a day long mescaline binge at the hotel bar. Sans the merry-go-round. The crowd was very young, however, in stark contrast to what i expected. I thought for sure the place would be packed with overweight conventioneers with their trade show lanyards and Nextel two-way cell phones causing all kinds of noise pollution. Instead, it was a very college age group. respectable.

We ended up having a really good time. The place was packed, and just about everyone there had arrived in costume. and really good ones. we sipped Mai Tai's, their signature drink and on special that night, and had a really good meal. then it was of to hear the band they had playing in the bar called "Tongo Hiti". with songs ranging from "I want you to want me" to none other than "Lips like Sugar", I could see myself coming back with a group of friends. The thing i realized most last night was that sure it was random, but a welcome change from what was expected. I could have easily walked down to the local gay watering hole to see my favorite clowns, i mean drag queens perform. but i didn't.
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