Tag Archives: Church of St Peter and Paul

San Francisco, 2007, Part 2: This is not the end

The next day my husband-to-be (HTB) and I headed to Greenwich St with its rows of rounded houses and the Church of St Peter and Paul. I found my dream house and we got a great view of Coit tower from the top of Lombard St where you could really see the Z shape of the famous zigzag road.

From here we caught a cable car down the hill to Fisherman’s Wharf. I was excited to take a trip on such an iconic mode of transport and surprised to see the driver was in the centre of the carriage.

Fisherman’s Wharf had seal statues and dolphin topiary, so I knew straight away that it was my kind of place. We found an $8.98 store where my HTB cleaned up, buying jeans and t-shirts for only $8.98! All I found was a t-shirt by Sarah Jessica Parker. I didn’t even know she had a label, so I guess it never made it to Australian shores.

The number one thing my HTB wanted to do in San Francisco was go to Alcatraz. Another place I was not that keen on and wouldn’t have gone to if not for him, which actually turned out to be pretty damn interesting. Anyway, I am always up for a ferry trip, and the journey over affording views of the Golden Gate Bridge and Oakland bridges did not disappoint.

We disembarked the ferry at Building 64 under the looming watchful eye of the guard tower. We passed the officer’s club, lighthouse and warden’s house before heading inside the prison and switching on our audio tour. We saw the shower room and a cell house. I could really imagine the sounds of city drifting over at night and it reminded me of Chateau d’ If in Marseille. How creepy it must have been to be a guard here cut off from the rest of the city.

The gun gallery was wisely close by to maximum security cell block D and we continued through the dining hall and kitchen to a cell block where a tunnel had been dug in an attempt to escape. We went inside the admin building where visitors signed in and ended the tour in the recreation yard where I took a great photo of my HTB posing as a prisoner.

Back on dry land, we took a local bus to Baker’s Beach for an unobstructed view of the Golden Gate Bridge. We were the only tourists on the beach and the bridge looked much clearer than the last time I was in San Francisco when it was obscured by fog.

Searching for the Alamo, we found the Panhandle instead and went into Golden Gate Park. I came to see lakes and real Bison so was happy when we found them. I liked the cute little Shakespeare’s garden that grows all the plants mentioned in his plays; and the gorgeous Japanese garden. I walked across a few stepping-stones, found a Buddha statue and stood at the top of Half-moon Bridge and took in the sight of waterfalls and bonsai trees.

Even though we had seen a lot, I knew that there was more of San Francisco that I wanted to explore and I hoped that I would be back in the wonderful city soon.

Related posts: San Francisco, 2007, Part 1: Falling in love again, USA Road trip, 2007: Part 2, Grand Canyon, 2007,  Las Vegas, 2007, USA Road trip, 2007, Disneyland, 2007, Los Angeles, 2007, USA, 1990

Czech Republic, 1997

On our first day in Prague, Sarah and I walked to the Vltava River dotted with islands and onto the Charles Bridge lined with statues. We headed to Stare Mesto and found the Church of Our Lady in front of Týn overlooking the old town square.

The square was in a festive mood with a Christmas tree, manger of animals and free gluhwein. We saw the astronomical clock strike the hour as little men came out of the clock windows. I loved the gothic feel of the city and couldn’t wait to explore more.

Back at the hostel which doubled as a tavern we tried the illegal 75% proof local speciality absinthe, which is also meant to have opium in it. I had one shot and had to stumble up the stairs to my loft bedroom to pass out.

We caught the one hour train to Kutna Hora the next day to visit the Kostnice Sedlec church which has the bones of 40,000 people inside. There are skull and cross bones everywhere and a chandelier made with every bone in the body. It really spun me out!

We crossed the Charles Bridge to Mala Strana with its green, gold and white buildings. We saw the imposing St Nicholas church and walked up to Prague Castle. A band was playing in the windows of the buildings surrounding Hradcanske Square and the palace guards were very friendly- so we stayed to watch the changing of guard.

Heading further into the castle, we saw the church of St George and St Vitus Cathedral and found the short houses on the golden lane where alchemists tried to turn lead into gold.

We headed down the hill to see the John Lennon wall- most of which was falling off.

On our last day in Prague, we went to Vysehrad Fortress. Of the fortress’s three entry gates, Leopold Gate was the nicest. We saw the cute little St Martin Rotunda and went to a lookout point with a view of Prague Castle. We found a tiny stage theatre and the Church of St Peter and Paul which dominates the fortress.

My favourite part of the fortress was Libuse’s Bath which is virtually hanging off the cliff over the Vltava River. I walked into Libuse’s Bath and thought that I could easily fall into river from here.

We headed back to the old town square in Prague and enjoyed the Christmas stalls before we boarded our train to Germany.

Related posts: Austria, 1997Hungary, 1997Romania, 1997Bulgaria, 1997Turkey, 1997Greece, 1997Italy, 1997, Part 2: Bella ItaliaItaly, 1997, Part 1: From Rome to FlorenceSpain, 1997, Part 2: Beyond Barcelona,  Spain, 1997, Part 1: Barcelona,  France, 1997, Part 2: The South of France, France, 1997, Part 1: ParisBelgium, 1997Holland, 1997England, 1997I first started travellingBy special requestHome is where you make itI first started writing