Hello from San Francisco!!!
Hope everyone is well. We've been in San Francisco for our first full day now and I have to say it's a lovely city and so easy to get around! Before I talk about San Fran though I need to mention about my last few days of camp...they were heart breaking!!!
My last night off was the Wednesday and we went to the mall to get some food and also some last minute shopping before we leave. Afterwards we met up with everyone else at a bar called Jimmy John's and I really do mean everyone, so many camp echo staff went! It was a real redneck bar complete with Republican stickers up on the wall saying 'Vote McCain' and one guy came and spoke to us for half an hour about how amazing and brave our British troops are. It was such a cool bar I wish we'd discovered it earlier but now we know for next year! We made curfew by fitting about 7 people in the car which involved me sitting on someone's knee I didn't even know that well haha. The next day was the last day of Olympics which I already mentioned and then Friday and Saturday were purely for packing and cleaning, and boy did we need both days! We packed 2 kids each and it took us all day the first day just to do that, that is how much they bring. The Friday night was the dinner dance which was so nice, don't know if I mentioned it in my last blog but it was so much fun we were just dancing all night (well until 10pm which unfortunately is when 6th grade and their counselors have to go to bed!)
On the Saturday night we had our last ever campership which was so sad. We had it on the beach and watched videos and photograph slide shows from the whole summer on a big projector and had awards for the kids and stuff. Then afterwards we all launched little wooden boats with candles into the lake and someone rowed over the lake to light a big 2008 sign on the other side. It was reall emotional actually and already people were starting to cry about leaving.
Sunday was horrible! The kids left straight after breakfast at 9am and one of ours burst into tears, it wasn't nice but I managed to hold myself together. When it came time to say bye to the staff though I was a wreck! I didn't think I would be as bothered as I was but I was crying my eyes out it was embarrassing haha! Just thinking there is people you have spent every moment of the last 2 months with who you will never see again was tough. We got on the bus at 2pm after a farewell meal and another slide show just of staff, it was really funny.
Anyway I'm going to skip all the flight stuff because it all went well and this is getting long now. We arrived at our hostel at midnight and went straight to bed. The hostel is so nice, the beds are amazingly comfortable and we have a sink, microwave and fridge in our room. There's communal bathrooms but there are a lot so you're never waiting long. Downstairs they have a kitchen, tv room, computer room, big dining area with a pool table, laundry room...think that's about it but it's so cosy! Most travellers seem to be British here too.
Today we woke up at half 7 because it was half 10 to us in New York time so we couldn't sleep any longer. After breakfast we decided to get the tram to Fisherman's Wharf where most of the tourist attractions are. A guy offered us directions and then after buttering us up about how great our accents were, asked us for money, when we said no he started getting really angry and shouting at us so we had to walk off quickly, it was scary but there's so many people around we're perfectly safe, you just find these wackos sometimes haha. When we go to Fisherman's Wharf we went to the Wax Museum, the statues weren't that great compared to somewhere like Madame Tussauds but that made it quite funny. It was free because we bought Go San Francisco cards in advance for $100 so most attractions are free to us for 5 days now. Then we went on a ferry ride under Golden Gate Bridge and around Alcatraz (also free). Afterwards we went to the aquarium because it was free too and we didn't want to head back to the hostel too early. We got back about 2 hours ago and just had our dinner (it's so nice being able to make your own and not worry about not liking food!) Tonight we're going to stay here, possibly mingle a bit with the other guests and play a game of pool. Tomorrow we're going to bike ride over Golden Gate Bridge because bike hire is also free with our card, it's such a good thing to have bought! On Thursday we're going to Golden Gate Park and there's a Jazz festival on there so there should be a good atmosphere. Unfortunately all alcatraz island tours are fully booked for the next month (it's so popular) so we can't do that which is a shame I was really looking forward to it. It's taught us to book far in advance though!
Anyway I better go now, don't want to use up all my internet minutes. Speak to you all in a few days!
Love Hannah xxx