So, Saturday morning after freaking out about the Chile earthquake and whatnot, Zach and D drove me to the Caltrain station so I could head off for some sister-bonding time with Jen. D was very excited about the trains, as usual. Last time he was at the station he was with my mom and dropping Jen off, and they met with the train conductor and even got a tour of the conductor's driving area and everything! So this time he's looking up at the train and I'm telling him that Mommy's going on the Caltrain and he keeps smiling slyly at me and saying "Donovan go on Caltrain?" I was worried he'd throw a fit in the end, but no he handled it great, waving at me through the window and watching with Zach while the train rode off.
An hour and a half later, I met Jen at the 22nd St station, and then we walked to a little cafe called Just For You where we shared the most amazing brunch I may have ever had. The food was seriously yum, with amazing homefries and cornbread.
Afterwards we walked around a bit and then took a train to her nook of the woods, where I met some of her newer housemates. And then, we shared a car with one of her housemates and drove to Sausalito to view a tour of The Plastiki, a large sailboat made out of recycled plastic & plastic bottles, set to sail from San Francisco to Australia. The project is meant to call attention to the huge amounts of plastic and other trash that end up in the ocean, I think. It was kinda neat, we looked at the boat for a little while and listened to some info about it. Then we went to downtown Sausalito and had ice cream and walked around a bit before heading back to the house. It was a GORGEOUS day so great for just hanging out.
That night one of her other housemates had signed herself up to help out with a fundraising event for Haiti, held as a gallery/shop. It appeared that she had agreed to have her body painted... naked... by an artist friend. And she had asked everyone at the house to be there for moral support. Jen and I got some dinner (naan and curry... yum) then stopped by for a bit to see the fundraiser. Her friend did great, and looked gorgeous, and the whole thing seemed to be going very well.
And then, Jen and I grabbed a taxi and headed off to our main event of the evening-- seeing a band called !!! (usually pronounced chk chk chk) in concert. Jen's been their fan for a while, and she got free tickets to this show via work. And this is where Jen's connections, both through her job and also by virtue of being the wonderful, loveable, and just plain awesome person that she is, become obvious. And she'll claim this was sheer luck, but it seems anytime you hang out with her she's always bumping into people she knows, so the girl really is seriously connected. But, we walk up to the door and by some mistake she's not on the list... no matter, she knows the doorman, he appears to adore her, and even gives us backstage passes. Then we go to check our coats, and Jen's friends with the woman working there and so takes our stuff and stores it for free. Then we go say hi to the guy who runs the place, and he sets us up to drink off his tab for the night.
We arrived as the band just before !!! is mid-set, so we station ourselves in a good spot, dance a little, people watch, chat. And then !!! comes on stage, and I've never heard their music before but I spent the next hour dancing my butt off like I haven't danced in, literally, YEARS. I was honestly a bit worried about feeling awkward, especially next to Jen as she goes out dancing all the time, but it really is just like riding a bike. I felt like I'd been transported back in time to my pre-mommy days when I was young and hip and cool, lol. And it was, needless to say, a complete and total blast.
The show ended early, around midnight, so then as we're leaving the club Jen runs into another acquaintance of hers and we agree to meet him and some friends at another bar, where we get some more dancing on.
And then, finally, to bed. We woke the next morning to another gloriously sunny and beautiful day (San Francisco was definitely treating us kindly that weekend). Zach was driving up with Donovan, and Andrew and Jakki were set to meet us, too. A few texts and calls later we all met up at Washington Square and ended up at Cafe DeLucchi for breakfast. The food was amazing, but after spending many visits around Cole Valley and Golden Gate Park, it was interesting to note how much less kid-friendly North Beach is (as in, the restaurant didn't have a single high chair or even a booster seat). But, there was a fire truck parked along the street, which entertained D while we adults ate in shifts and took turns walking around outside with him.
Post-breakfast, we walked back to Andrew & Jakki's place, where D got to meet, for the first time ever, Frank the rat (thought if anyone asks, he's a "hamster"). D instantly took a liking, petting Frank and even feeding him little treats. And, as surprised as I am to find myself saying this, if you ignore the tail Frank really is kinda cute. ; )
By now it was getting to be afternoon, so we stopped for some gelato at Zach's request, then drove home. We did stop at this great little playscape Zach discovered that's off the Cañada College exit off 280, to let D run around and play a bit halfway through the drive. Then it was home, dinner, bath, and bedtime. The end of another fun-filled weekend.
(More pictures here)