December 30th to 31st – Sacramento

I was fortunate to have enough time on my way home to swing by my best friend’s house.  I hate that Aileen and I live so far apart.  It was a long trek from Anaheim to Sacramento (just over 400 miles), so it made for a tiring day.  I arrived around 3pm, but Aileen was at a friend’s house so I went to see my other trusty friend…Starbucks.

When Aileen arrived home her Mom was with her so we had a great time chatting and catching up.  I made Aileen endure my vacation photo show before heading to dinner at Macaroni Grill.  We had big plans for the following day, so I wasted no time falling asleep in my very comfortable hotel room at the Marriott.

The next morning I was up early so I could get breakfast at the Marriott and then of course my ice tea at Starbucks before heading to Aileen’s so that we could start our adventure.  As with most of Aileen and my trips this one did not go exactly as planned and that’s just the way we like it.  Our plan at the beginning of the day was to hit the Jelly Belly Factory followed up with a trip to Six Flags.

We had so much fun with Liam at the Jelly Belly Factory.  It was a bit of the bummer that they weren’t actually running production that day, but we still did the tour and wore the silly hats.  I also enjoyed searching out some unique jelly bean gifts for my Mom since she really likes them.

Our plan for the next part of our day was Six Flags and we had timed it just right so that we would get there as they opened.  To our surprise we only saw one other car and after waiting a few minutes for them to open we asked the security guard parked nearby what the deal was.  Turns out that since it was New Years Eve they had decided to change their hours from 11a-6p to 4p-12a.  Man that sucked.

Since we were half way to San Francisco I suggested that we keep driving that way while I used Aileen’s phone to search for something fun to do.  In my search I discovered a website that said the ferry from Sausalito to San Francisco was the second most scenic ferry in the United States.  Luckily we were just approaching Sausalito, so we decided to give it a try.  On the way, we had to make a quick stop by Toy R Us because we had forgotten Liam’s stroller and we knew it would be a long day if he had to walk.  Liam in the stroller was so cute.  If I remember correctly he weighed nearly the max amount for the stroller.

We checked out the ferry schedules and found that we had some time which was perfect since we needed lunch.  We found a cute little place to eat.  There were two options for the Sausalito to San Francisco and I believe they were both amazing.  We took the Sausalito to Pier 1 ferry.  There were views of the Golden Gate Bridge, the cityscape, and we went very close (and slowed down) to Alcatraz.  I was so bummed that I didn’t have my camera, but thank goodness for cell phones.

After getting to Pier 1 we walked to Pier 39 (Fisherman’s Warf).  Aside from all the great shops and yummy food, we discovered an amazing gallery of photographs taken by Rodney Lough Jr.  If I remember correctly they were all landscapes.  He is just amazing!  I signed up to be on his mailing list in hopes of purchasing one of his books when it releases.  I don’t think Liam appreciated the gallery as much as Aileen and I did.  Liam did however enjoy watching the sea lions.

It was starting to get dark, so we headed back to Pier 1 to catch our ferry.  We got back in time to have some interesting Mexican food.  I call it interesting because I love Mexican food and yet this particular place was different.

Just before our ferry was going to leave we saw a group of peopled boarding with balloons.  Turns out there was going to be a wedding on board.  The couple had met on the Sausalito/San Francisco ferry so that’s where they wanted to get married.

We got back to my hotel in Sacramento just before 9pm.  We were exhausted, but we had promised Liam he could go swimming in the hotel pool.  Those with small kids know that they never forget no matter how tired they are.  Dennis met us there with the swim gear.

It was a very long day, but as usual the ‘Aileen and Pam’ adventures are never boring.

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