Berkeley & Oakland

I've decided that I'm going to break my trip to San Francisco up into bite-sized chunks; still a feast for the eyes, but easier to chew and swallow. I tend to swamp my blog with kazillions of photos all at once, and I think it can get a little overwhelming. Everything in moderation (tell that to my overactive brain).

We took the 5 (I'm still loving the fact that Angelenos add "the" before every freeway name) up through the central part of California, otherwise known as stinky cow country. It's possible to get to San Fran by driving up the Pacific Coast Highway, much of which snakes along the coast right next to the ocean (or up above it on cliffs, in some places) and is rumored to be gloriously beautiful, but that trip takes eight hours, whereas the 5 only takes five hours (so I guess you could say we took the 5 for five...*crickets*) and we were more concerned with just getting there, since we only had a short weekend to spend time with Toby's aunt, uncle, and cousin.








mountain clouds

mountain clouds

road trip


The weather for the weekend was forecasted to be rain, rain, and more rain, so I didn't have high hopes for using my camera much. By the time we got to Berkeley on Friday, the night was dark and chilly, and the sky had opened up the floodgates. I sadly stuck my camera by itself in the corner and resigned myself to a pictureless weekend.

When we woke in the morning, it was cloudy and windy, but the sky was steady and no rain was falling. Energized by the prospects of a dry day, we walked to a cute little neighborhood nearby for brunch, and then hopped in the car to visit Toby's cousin Aaron, his wife Nadia, and their baby girl, Ella. Aaron took us on a tour of Berkeley, and then we drove over to Oakland for dinner.


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The view from Aaron and Nadia's house - yes, that is the bay, and yes, that is the Golden Gate Bridge in the distance. Wowza.
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Close up of the Golden Gate - I like that bird chillin' on the telephone wire; it's very Alfred Hitchcock, especially with the black and white






berkeley ca

berkeley ca

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berkeley ca
Love At First Bite. Highly recommended (and isn't the word "cupcakery" awesome?
I wish I could find a way to use it in everyday sentences....
We got a snickerdoodle cupcake (!) and some kind of carrot cake cupcake with cream cheese frosting. 
berkeley ca

berkeley ca
berkeley ca
Joy might kill me for this one...but it's so cute! Look how much she's enjoying that cupcake =]
berkeley ca

berkeley ca
The view of the bay from high up in the hills of Berkeley
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I love how it was clear enough to see everything, but you could still see the rain coming out of the clouds. 
berkeley ca

berkeley ca
Golden Gate and downtown San Fran
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berkeley ca
Toby, Aaron, Joy, and David
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Schleepy boyfriend







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oakland ca
Driving into Oakland

The restaurant we went to was named Hibiscus, and they served what can only be described as eclectic comfort/soul food. I got roasted spring vegetables and a side of macaroni and cheese with bacon, and they served us a bright pink drink, also named the Hibiscus, which involved Hibiscus tea, gin, and a few other things, and it was to. die. for. I don't even like gin! SO tasty.






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oakland ca

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Nom nom nom.
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Nadia's class made this! She was super excited to see it - each square was painted by a different kid, and I don't think they even got to see the picture they were painting until they were all done with their individual work. I think it turned  out really well. 

oakland ca

oakland ca

oakland ca

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oakland ca
Baby Ella!!! And her parents, having a moment =]
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oakland ca
Love this one, so cute.
oakland ca

oakland ca


We did a brief walk around of the neighborhood near Hibiscus (which apparently isn't the safest place in the world at night)...





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oakland ca
I like the colors and the lines in this one
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oakland ca

oakland ca

oakland ca

oakland ca

oakland ca

oakland ca

oakland ca

oakland ca


...and ended the night playing euchre while drinking foamy beer at a pub in Berkeley (lest you forget, it was St. Patrick's day), as documented by my cell phone:





Uploaded from the Photobucket Android App


And those were my adventures in Berkeley and Oakland! Short and sweet, but lots of pictures. Final word: go to Hibiscus. It's delicious, has a great ambiance, and the waiters are super friendly.

Much love, and happy Tuesday!






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