San Francisco final day

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I wrote this on Sunday, but had no internet until yesterday, and didn’t upload the relevant pictures until today! Anyway, my final day in San Francisco was good – Chinese New Year festival was cool, pictures included! πŸ™‚

In the morning it was a rush (I almost missed the boat!) to get on to Alcatraz, the prison island in the middle of San Francisco bay. The audio tour was well done and I visited all the parts of the island I could – there were civil war re-enactment people (balls and chains and blue army suits kinda thing), so some parts were not on (like the movies). It also didn’t seem there was any stuff to do with escaping Alcatraz or manned tours (although the audio tour was pretty comprehensive).

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After this I met up with Jon, Alice (both scholars) and her mentor Alex to get something to eat at Fisherman’s Wharf pier 39, going to a Italian seafood restaurant. The food was good, and I was going to go on a Segway tour with David Hayward although it was called off due to rain. He came and had some food too, then everyone but Alex (who I hope is better now since he was ill) went to WonderCon, a comic convention run by ComicCon.

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Talk about huge, this place had a lot of stuff – I didn’t find all the things I might have liked (American prices are dead cheap πŸ™‚ ) but did get all the books of Girl Genius (signed by one of the authors, yay), which I had planned to before, but now I don’t have to pay shipping or whatever πŸ™‚

The others got some neat stuff too, and around 5PM we decided we’d wandered around enough, since it was busy too and the Chinese New Year festival was going to start at 5:30PM.

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It was sadly raining but the crowds were still there – I managed to take quite a few pictures of some of the proceedings – which seemed to work on a β€œwalk 5 feet and stand around for 20 minutes” routine. We saw quite a bit of it (I think) and even with the rain and poor visibility it was good.

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Once everyone was done, it was decided that a post-GDC party which Jon knew was going on would be good to get to (decided earlier in the day). Everyone went back to hotels to prepare – this gave me enough time to grab another bag to stuff the rubbish I had brought back with me. I chose a nice duffle bag, since it’d then serve me as good storage for non-international things and clothing.

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The evening started with a trip to Westfield mall to get some foodcourt food (with me, Jon, Alice and Tatayna), then we got some liqueur (damn it was cheap), and went to get David. We actually got a lift / cab ride in a limo (obviously run by the guy who drove it) which came with it’s own cute white dog.

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We went in a more conventional taxi to the party, turning up at the wrong road we walked to it and got there just as Jon’s friend turned up. The party itself was great, and was certainly surprising who was there. The house it was in was great (I met the 1Up editor who was one of the people living there, which was nice), and I mainly discussed random things – meeting people for business wasn’t the aim there of course.

We finally left at around 2PM, much later then planned (but earlier then I wanted), but it was a fun night (I just hope to know someone who knows someone going next year πŸ™‚ ). A busy day, and flights were tomorrow.