Last weekend I drove to San Francisco to visit family and play tourist in a city I don't visit often enough.My late Nana's brother John and his son Rod live in San Francisco and when my Aunt Fiona mentioned she was thinking about flying in and visiting for a few days, I said count me in.

When my Nana was alive, she was sort of the glue. Everyone would come to visit her and we all just knew that we'd see each other eventually. Now that she's gone, I think we're all feeling that drive to put forth the effort and stay connected. In addition, John isn't getting any younger and he's too amazing of a man NOT to go visit.

So, that's what we did.

I drove into Oakland and picked my Aunt up at the airport. She flew in from Seattle...you know...when everything shut down thanks to several freak snow storms? Yeah. We were lucky she made it.

The agenda for the day included visiting John, going to Alcatraz and meeting up with Rod, his girlfriend Mia and my aunt's friend for dinner. We drove into the city, found some street parking and headed to John's place. First and foremost, can just tell you how effortless it was navigating around San Francisco? I realized that I've always been a passenger or taken public transit into the city. I also ALWAYS hear how terrible it is to drive around San Francisco. Yes, there are too many people driving like maniacs and public transit is always a better option, but I was just surprised at how...uh...easy it was.

Anyway, we went to visit John, who can only really handle visitors for a short time, then we hopped on a bus down to Pier 33 and boarded the 1:20 p.m. boat across to Alcatraz. Did I mention it was cold and wet and dreary? Well, it was. We figured it was kind of perfect weather for visiting a prison.

Here's me...on the boat:

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And here are my attempts at capturing the feel of The Rock:

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Yikes!

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The last meal ever served at Alcatraz:

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Speaking of meals, Rod made reservations at Crustacean for dinner. Have any of you been? We ordered several items to share and the food was incredible. We weren't thrilled with the dessert, but we honestly didn't need any after all of that food...roasted whole crab, garlic noodles, rice paper rolls, steamed sea bass...and so on. Of course I didn't take pictures of the meal. I was way too busy eating it. But if you're in the city and want a nice meal, I highly recommend it.

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