Day 2 At Berkeley
I went to Market Street (it's like Singapore's Orchard Road) and walked about. I went, I saw, and I took photos. So instead of talking, I'll just upload the pictures.
Then I went to Westfield San Francisco Centre. There I looked around and saw this.
It's an interactive directory. Cool huh? The first picture was taken when I used it. Guess what I was searching for? Yeah...the toilet.
The second picture was taken after I helped a senior citizen find his shop. He was going to Dockers. The story began when I was searching for the toilet. He stood beside me and a similar (not exactly as I can't remember the exact words) conversation started.
Man: Whoa...now they have these electronic touchy things huh?
Me: Yeah...it's pretty advanced.
Man: It's my first time here and I am looking for a pair of pants. The kind with the strap from the waist to the shoulders. Do you know where I can find them?
Lol...me also first time there leh...how?
Man: Hm...does Dockers sell those?
Me: I am not sure about that.
Man: But where is it?
Me: I can help you locate the stall with this e-directory.
And that was the story of how me looking for a toilet was able to assist someone else in finding Dockers.
One thing that I noticed. The people there are pretty friendly...I think friendlier than where I came from...lol.
I had my lunch at Grain D'or. How you pronounced that? I also don't know.
Anyway, I went in and ordered my lunch. Here's how it looked like.
It's a pretty big portion and filling too. It's Turkey and Mozzarella Sandwich and it tastes nice.
Then I walked over to Port San Francisco at The Embarcadero. When I was there, there was this Farmer's Market going on. There were stalls selling farm produce. Interesting. Here are some photos.
Then I took photos of the Bay Bridge.
Then I went over to Singapore Consulate-General in San Francisco. I wanted to inform them that I was there and also asked if there would be any National Day Celebrations. I went over to 595 Market Street and went to their office.
There was a kind lady who assisted me with my questions. She told me that we need not go to the consulate in person to inform them, instead we could just do it online at their website. Oh okay...then I asked her if they had any National Day celebrations over here. She asked me when I was leaving and I told her about 15th August. Then she went to check. When she came back she told me that they would be having their celebrations on the 15th of August (if I remember correctly). Aw...how sad. I guess I would have to watch YouTube or something. I thanked her for her help and went to the ground floor.
There were different stalls at the ground floor. There was an ice cream stall, a massage corner (where people massage you) and a wide spread of pastries. Hm...it looks like they have some event over here. I went to the ice cream stall and this conversation followed.
Me: How much is an ice cream?
Assistant: It's free.
Cool! Free ice cream. It pays to visit the Consulate after all...lol.
This is the picture of the ice cream stall.
And here's my free ice cream. It's strawberry with a chocolate chip cookie (yeah...the cookie is free too).
After that I walked over to Chinatown. Here are some pictures.
There's this interesting machine outside one of the shop. What you do is you insert a coin and the machine will squash it for you. The squashed coin will be your souvenir...lol. I didn't know such thing also got.
Next I went over to Portsmouth Square. There were a lot of senior citizens there. Some were chatting, some just idling about, some playing chess (the minority) while some were playing cards (the majority). Hm...what does this tell you? People here prefer cards than chinese chess...lol.
As I walked I saw a chinese chess match going on and so I decided to stop by, stand beside them and watched.
It was an interesting match. Occasionally, one of them would laugh and look at me...because he had cornered the opponent into sacrificing one of his pieces. In the end, it looks like the man on the left was winning. However, I didn't get to see the checkmate move as they stopped halfway and started a new game. Interesting.
After that I went over to the Chinese Culture Center. I was at the entrance looking at the various items they had there. When I proceed on to enter, the man at the counter looked at me and this conversation followed.
Man: I'm sorry, but we are closed.
Man: We close at 4pm.
I looked at my watch and it was 3.59pm. Diao!
Me: Oh man...shucks.
Man: Where are you from?
Man: Yeah I know...do come again tomorrow.
I don't think I can as I have other things to do...lol. I guessed I spent too much time observing the chinese chess match. However, thinking about it, by looking at how the senior citizens play and behave at Portsmouth Square, I could already learn chinese culture. I need not go to the Chinese Cultural Center to learn as there, I have a generation of chinese people socializing and sharing their culture through their interactions. I know...I am just comforting myself.
Next I went to Transamerica Pyramid. Here are some pictures of it.
After that I took the BART train back to where I lived. I was at the Embarcadero Station and there I observed something interesting.
The above shows a sign on the floor to guide those outside the train where to stand on, allowing those in the train to exit first. This is interesting as the people there observed (as in followed) this. However, in Singapore, I see people rushing into the train even when people inside have not alighted. Shucks...I feel embarrassed. When the train arrived, those outside waited for people inside to move out. Then suddenly, the man behind me rushed in front of me to enter the train...I guess here we do have some similarities after all...haha.
Then in the train, a lady gave up her seat to another lady who was holding her young child. That's nice and touching.
I alighted at Downtown Berkeley Station and went to UC Berkeley to walk around. While walking I saw this.
Can you spot 4 squirrels? They are cute.
Then I went over to La Cascada Taqueria to have my dinner. There I had a Beef Taco.
The meal was pretty okay. After that I walked back home and rested.
Time: 6.26pm, 18th June 08 (Wednesday)