Last week I traveled to San Francisco for a work conference. I attended the National Student Employment Association’s annual conference and presented. It was a great experience and I met a ton of helpful people. I also had a little bit of down time in which I was able to go exploring and meet up with a few folks who I have befriended via Instagram.
On Wednesday I woke up super early, pulled on my Werkshop dragonfly leggings and sports bra, grabbed my Cotopaxi Boma 13L daypack & headed out of my hotel. It was a gorgeous morning in San Francisco, about 50 degrees since the sun was still coming up with a light breeze. I had grabbed a map from the front desk at the hotel but could see my destination in front of me and felt pretty confident I could find my way. I was headed for that most majestic of human constructions, the Golden Gate Bridge.
I have been to San Francisco once before when I was in high school. Our concert choir took a trip there in 2008 and I remember I really enjoyed walking around the city and taking in the views. This time, I was an adult and ready to explore! My walk toward the bridge took me about an hour, I made it just under 3 miles when I found a fantastic little strip of beach with the San Francisco Bay’s waves rolling in. I had to stop. There were locals playing on the sand and the water with their dogs and I sat and took a moment to just soak it all in. I had been on the hunt to find a good place for my Instagram posts for the day, this was it.
At this point the sun had moved higher in the sky and it was turning into an absolutely gorgeous day. I sat down my Boma and took out our GoPro Hero 3+ and got it set up for some picture time. I spent probably 30 minutes in this spot. When I had finished playing in the sand I realized I wouldn’t have time to walk the rest of the way to the bridge and make it back to my hotel in time to get ready for the first session. So I packed up and made my way back to the path. It was then I realized how close I was to the Palace of Fine Arts, so you can probably guess what happened – detour!
So a quick 10 minutes at the Palace and I was back on the “road” or sidewalk. I walked past some pretty beautiful properties, all side-by-side, each one done up differently to reflect the owner’s taste. I thought it would be fun to live here, but I sure would miss having a yard!
The rest of the day and the following day were spent attending conference presentations and giving my own presentation, we even went to a delicious Italian restaurant one night. Thursday after I finished my talk I met up with Raquel @underthebonsai_ from IG who I had been corresponding with for some time. It was so awesome to walk into the hotel lobby and have her standing right there, ready to swoop me up and take me on an adventure. I quickly changed from my conference clothes into my gorgeous Yoga Democracy Bandhani crop leggings and Choli top.
We made our way toward the bridge, this time in her car (much faster) and grabbed a new friend Elise @temescallion. We had a great time striking poses under the bridge and even took a stroll on the bridge!! Yogi translation of stroll is we all did handstands!
After our explorations we drove to Valencia. It was too dark when we arrived for any more yoga shots, so that meant it was dinner time. We met Yely @yogayely at a fabulous restaurant called Gracias Madre where we all ordered the same delicious stuffed green pepper with butternut squash and chilies. The meal was phenomenal and the company was superb. I was so delighted to be spending time with these gorgeous, smart, and talented women. Give their feeds a look and a follow, they are incredible people!
My night was capped off with a most surprising meet-up, Pat Bailey, oh yes, the one and only PB @patbailey met me for a drink at a bar/restaurant called South Paw, just across the street from my dinner spot. While I waited I drank a delicious cider brewed with champagne wheat, yum! When Pat arrived I could barely contain my excitement, it was so fantastic to sit down and have a talk, several in fact, that spanned several hours with such a divine individual. Pat exudes love and affection, understanding and patience, mystery and wisdom and I was just so taken with her genuine interest in what I had to say. After a few appetizers and more conversation we were both pretty tired, she was so kind to drop me off at my hotel where we snapped this adorable blurry photo. I love it though because it just IS and next time we’ll rock the yoga poses 🙂
The big finish of this post is that I felt so lucky to have in the matter of a few hours met 4, INCREDIBLE individuals all because of IG, all because we connect everyday with new and amazing people and sometimes you actually get the chance to meet them in real life. I can’t wait to have more of these experiences and meet more awesome yogis as I continue my travels to India in LESS THAN A MONTH! I look forward to developing friendships with even more people as I travel!
Keep your eyes on this blog in December and after I return, I hope to share some good insights on life in Mysore! Until then, keep connecting with me! You can find me on Instagram: @clarissa_mae_ or on Facebook where I post classes I’m teaching: Clarissa Mae Yoga give me a shout if you are ever in or around the Quad Cities region, IL/IA border!