I just got back from my meeting up North. The meeting started out rough but we pulled through and it all came off very well.
Now, to the fun stuff. We flew into Oakland airport because it's smaller than San Francisco International. Because it's smaller, there seem to be fewer delays and it happens to be closer to the appointments we had to hit. My boss and I chose to be rebels though. While everyone else stayed at a sort of miserable hotel near the Oakland Airport (blechh!) we stayed at a fabulous hotel in the city.
We rented a bright blue PT Cruiser (aka The Smurf Mobile) and a GPS system and made our way into the city. We were considering going to Sausalito for dinner but fell in love with our hotel and decided to stay in the city for the evening. As I checked in I noticed an incredibly cute chocolate lab behind the counter who, we learned, was the Director of Pet Relations. I knew it was a "pet friendly" hotel but was surprised to see such a sweet dog upon my arrival. Turns out he is a rescued lab who lives with the Hotel Director. He spends his days greeting visitors and has a lovely home to go to every night. I loved him! They told us they were serving wine and cheese in the lounge so we quickly dumped our bags off in our rooms and raced downstairs for our evening snack. We then took a walk around the neighborhood. We were very close to Union Square and the streets were calling out to us. We passed several high end stores but were drawn to one in particular. I saw it from across the street but didn't see it's name. I pointed and said "That looks promising!" Turns out it was Neiman Marcus (queue the sound of angels singing). We spent a good amount of time sampling perfumes at the Jo Malone counter. Are you familiar with Jo Malone? Ladies, you must find a Ms. Malone counter and test the scents. (I happen to be a Orange Blossom girl.) They are so great. Anyway, we then checked out the ridiculously priced gold at the jewelery counter. We then ventured up to the shoe department where I talked my boss into buying shoes, on sale, for $300. You heard me. I wouldn't normally have been such a pusher, I'd already talked her into some perfume downstairs, but she has always wanted this particular brand of shoe. She claimed that they were the most comfortable things she'd ever slipped her feet in to. I told her that if they found them on sale, and in her size, it was a sign that she had to buy them. My favorite part of the shopping trip came when our sales clerk deserted us for "deeper pockets". Some anorexic trophy wife with a Louis Vuitton bag (which I happen to think are ridiculous and hideous) swept in and the clerk dumped us sale-rack-girls. She claimed she couldn't find the right size and asked someone else to help us. 10 minutes later the lights dimmed (that's how they tell you to get the hell out of because it's closing time) and the anorexic chick disappeared without making a purchase. We watched as her sales clerk cleaned up the 20 boxes of the anorexic's unpurchaed shoes while my boss bought her dream shoes. Our new sales clerk was an incredibly nice man. I told him I was glad he got the sale since the other salesperson so rudely abandoned us. He laughed and nodded. Ha, ha! Here was my view from the shoe department.
I know... couldn't you just die?
We saw that famous street with the trolleys running up and down tiered blocks. I would have snapped a picture but we were rushing back to our hotel for dinner. The French restaurant in our hotel offered one of the best meals I've had in ages. Curried squash soup anyone? How about roasted artichokes? I'd never had them before but they blew me away. After a fine meal and some yummy wine I made my way to my room and slept in this amazing bed. I think I now have to have a canopy bed before I die. Yes, that's a lamp sticking out of that fantasticly draped fabric. It's the best reading spot I've ever encountered. Isn't it great?! I loved it!!Here, you can see a tiny bit more of my room. That's the fabulous bed in the mirror. *sigh* I'll dream of that bed for a long time to come.
I like, and am extremely grateful for, my job today.