It all started on Monday when the flyers came out Ice Skating and shopping in San Francisco, I mean who wouldn’t want to experience that. Housing did a couple of ice skating events last year, and I happened to miss both of them, which bummed me out, I did not want to miss out on it this year. I talked with my roommate (because obviously I didn’t want to go alone) and since it sounded like so much fun we decided to sign up.
The day arrives, and we know a few things: snacks will be provided at the end of the day (the drive back), our ice skating time is 6-7:30pm, and we were supposed to be leaving campus at 12 noon. So this meant a few things, either eat a big breakfast, lots of snacks, or buy food when you get there. My thought was San Francisco, there’s plenty of places to eat, small breakfast, and by the end of that two hour ride I’ll be ready for a decent/delicious meal. We arrive in Union square, maybe 2:30…we didn’t leave exactly at noon, and with a bit of traffic, no way did we make it there in exactly two hours.
Lets go over this again. 2:30, San Francisco, Union Square, on a Saturday, during the holidays. Maybe a little more planning on my part should have been done. We did see Ghirardelli (Mmmm Chocolate) but that’s not exactly a good lunch. Really I didn’t want to have to wait forever for food, but I didn’t want fast food. We went to the Asian box on the bottom level of Macy’s (I swear there is food on like every floor there) seemed like a good compromise and it didn’t seem to take to long to get our food, it was just a little different experience ordering and such since we really hadn’t heard of it before.
While we were eating we tried to look up places to find some good shopping places around. Obviously Union Square has a million places to shop, but I’m pretty sure as a college student I don’t have enough money to shop at Neiman Marcus, Sachs Fifth avenue, or Tiffany & co. maybe I do, but I was looking for things slightly more reasonable. My roommate found a place that looked interesting over on Market Street so we headed down to look for it. I did mention chocolate right, yeah we found Ghirardelli, practically ran inside, I mean who wouldn’t stop and look inside at least. Well there was also a little thought of a hot chocolate or something, it wasn’t that cold, but who could resist. Once we were done there, we were still looking for the place she had found. Either our phones were having problems or we are horrible at directions (it might be a mix of both), and I’m pretty sure the place we were looking for no longer existed.
What? Excuse me, are you serious? Yes. But we had passed a good dozen stores in the search for this specific store, so hopefully one of them will have something good, something that yells San Francisco. Yes…maybe. Were we just on the wrong street or the most horrible tourists in San Francisco ever? I hope not. Maybe we were just looking for the wrong stores, a decent souvenir place, especially since I don’t think my roommate had ever been and it is such an iconic place. It’s San Francisco, there has to be something, there must be something…I mean I know there is something, we were just in the wrong part of San Francisco for me to know where to look.
So we walked, and walked and looked for stores, we went in some, avoided a few others, and found a few things. Little nick knacks, magnets, mugs, cards. I’d say it was a decent find, I only say decent because there was something I had in mind, a shirt of some sort with a decent San Francisco logo. I wanted something original, not something you might see every tourist wearing, I wanted it to be special.
We had walked and wandered and shopped long enough we wanted enough time to get back to union square take a breath some, and then do some ice skating. That was half of why we came, to go ice skating, and since I’m pretty sure its been 10 years since I’ve ice skated I wanted to do it. There was the chance the moment my skates hit the ice I would fall on my face, but that is just part of the experience. Sometimes you have to hug the wall a little before getting comfortable, and I was okay with that. It did take some time to get used to, and I may have looked a little like a worm wobbling back and forth trying not to fall or run into people, but so did about half the other people there.
I must say there were a lot of people skating. We had a time slot for skating, it wasn’t just set by housing, but by the rink in Union Square, each session was an hour and a half, and seemed to give a occupancy limit since a few times said sold out, but there were 50 people from housing skating, plus 100-150 (or more) people in the ice rink. It was a small ice rink, maybe a little bigger then a bedroom in an apartment. I mean the entire establishment took up a decent amount of space for tickets, skates, and lockers, but the place you actually skated seemed very cramped. I was scared of running into people, and since I was no skating expert, and people were going in all different speeds, trying to avoid people was difficult.
We could have skated the entire 1.5 hours, but since we had already walked lets say 4 miles trying to keep moving for another hour and a half on our feet seemed impossible. We made it the hour, which wasn’t too bad, but we were sore. We went looking for something to drink, and possibly a snack. We had walked back and forth enough to know there was a Walgreens or CVS near by somewhere to get something to drink at a reasonable price, and a nice snack. Surprisingly Walgreens also had a decent amount of souvenirs, cards, mugs, snow globes. Right, always the last place you look.
The ride back was nice, I’m almost sure I fell asleep for a little, but by the time we were back at the dorms my body was sore and ready to crash. It was a blast going and exploring in San Francisco, and ice skating was a lot of fun even if I did fall. If they do it again next year, I would definitely do it again, Union Square was just so magical.