Pat and Sari's Honeymoon Bike Ride

Saturday, May 31, 2008 - Rest Day in Berkeley, CA

Today we took the ferry across the Bay into San Francisco to the farmers market at the Ferry Building. The harbor where we waited for the ferry was interesting. One of the boats docked there was the USS Potomac, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt's personal yacht. There was a plaque there giving some history of the yacht, built in 1934 as a Coast Guard cutter and converted to a presidential yacht in 1936, remaining in use until the president's death in 1945. The Port of Oakland bought the ship in 1981 and it was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1990. At one point in its varied history, Elvis Presley bought the boat for $50,000 and donated it to the St. Jude Hospital.

The ferry ride was exciting in itself - we saw enormous numbers of containers at the dock waiting to be loaded and a few ships in the process of being loaded. It was neat to see all the loading cranes lined up along the dock. Shane says there's a story floating around that these cranes were the inspiration for George Lucas' Star Wars snow walkers and I could see the resemblance. We also saw the Oakland and San Francisco Bay Bridges which connect via a tunnel through Treasure Island. The Ferry Building was a huge building at the edge of the Bay, with the farmers market set up in tents outside of it and in little shops inside. The market was very crowded both inside and out, with wonderful meats, cheeses, fruits, vegetables and other delicacies. There were also interesting sculptures in the area, some street musicians and other performers, and other fascinating buildings - both old and new - in the city beyond the Ferry Building. We also saw several trolleys at the station in front of the Ferry Building. Shane tells us that some of them came from other countries, so they all looked different. Finally, we saw a cable car at the bottom of one of San Francisco's impossibly steep hills.

The Alameda/Oakland Ferry dock

A sailboat in the bay

The plaque describing FDR's yacht, the Potomac

The Potomac itself

Boats in the marina

Various dragon boats were practicing in the bay

The ferry arrives at the dock

Loading cranes along the harbor

A close-up of the gizmo that moves the containers on and off boats

A boat loaded with containers

The full view of the boat

Another boat in the process of begin loaded

Pulling away from the harbor with a sailboat behind us

A view of the Bay Bridges - Oakland to the right and
San Francisco to the left with Treasure Island in between

A close-up of the San Francisco Bay Bridge tunneling into the island

The skyline of San Francisco behind the Bay Bridge

The Ferry Building with the farmers market tents in the foreground

Some sculptures to the left of the Ferry Building

One of the farmers market stands

Inside the building, Shane (green hat) and Sky (dark blue)
discuss where to go first

A fabulous chocolate store

A seafood restaurant

An Italian store

Outside again, a popular coffee vendor

An olive oil vendor

A statue of Gandhi floats above the crowd

A close-up of the Gandhi statue...

and the plaque underneath it

Trussed chickens for sale

Street musicians...

and performers

A Seque serves as an unusual advertisement vehicle

One of the trolleys and interesting city buildings behind

Another view of the buildings

Another trolley

A monument also serving as a bench

The Ferry Building bell tower

Pat in front of the Amtrak building

A stunning Art Nouveau restaurant, the Boulevard

A plaque describing an attractive sculpture

The Crouching Spider

Cable cars at the bottom of Nob Hill