This trip was full of surprises, good and bad.
This is the beginning:
On Monday 22nd Micke and I flew from Sweden to Switzerland to catch another flight to San Francisco. At the arrival in Switzerland I was stopped by the customs who told me I would not fly with this passport. I already had the boarding card but they said Sweden had made a mistake. That woman laughed at me saying “you are NOT flying” and to Micke “you are flying”. Micke told her he would not leave without me, we were both sent back to Sweden.
Now it is my responsability to have the right passport to travel but it was the Swedish airport’s responsability to let people fly with the right documents, had they stopped me I would have had the possibility to rearrange the trip instead of loosing it all.
Anyway I was so sad to miss it all, I booked new tickets for the day after , thank God I found a reasonable price and used my Swedish passport ( which I had received after I booked the first trip) .
Wednesday 24th, we are now flying from Sweden to France and then to San Francisco, we even managed to get on the same plane as Jari.
Arrival in San Francisco at 16.30, sun shinning, beautiful day but we are extremely tired and fell asleep at 17.00 in the afternoon to wake up 06.00 the morning after!
Thursday 25th was the discovery day, the walking day, 6 hours in total, we went from Sutter Street to Union Square, China Town, Fisherman’s Warf, Lombard Street and back to Sutter St.
I have to say the best feeling I had was in China town I don’t know why, I felt good there and wanted to stay, I really like the Chinese culture and I was fascinated by the buildings and the atmosphere. We found Empress of China where Bruce´s birthday would take place, as well as the Chinese hospital and for the first time in my life I ate dumplings, I loved it!
We came back in time to get a Thanksgiving dinner at the Hotel; this was really really nice…
Friday 26th was the Golden Gate day, the feeling there was great, fantastic weather and great view, we walked on the bridge and stopped at the middle , we could see it all, Alcatraz was in sight… ah the feeling on the bridge was great, I only had seen it in the movies, this was so incredible to actually be there.
Then we moved on to the Golden Gate Park and to the Japanese Garden, small place but really beautiful.
Back to Union Square where we thought we would do some shopping… yes sure !!! this was black Friday, thousands of people everywhere, there was no way, so we stopped at burger king and went home…
In the evening we met with the JKD brothers at our hotel, Mike Gittelson, Dan Harris, Coske, Jari and some more people from Los Angeles and Spain. Nice to meet some new friends!
At 13.00 we met with Jeff Chinn our tour guide at the Chinese hospital for the tour. Jeff is a Bruce Lee Specialist, he seems to know almost everything about Bruce and behind this knowledge is a huge work of researches. Jeff also has an impressive collection in his Bruce Lee Room… something I´d like to see someday 🙂 … This was great to hear lots of stories about Bruce’s life there, where he was born and the places where he used to be. The story about the theatres and the impact they had, we were shown unique pictures and told stories never heard before, that was very interesting, Jeff and his wife are very nice people.
We had very little time to get back to the hotel to get ready for the dinner. At the dinner we sat with our friends at the left side of the scene, I could come forward and approach Linda who congratulated me for training Ted Wong JKD, I also told her I was from Sweden and she said she had some Swedish origins herself. I found Linda to be a very nice and sweet lady, I was very happy to be able to meet her.
And Allen Joe, let me tell you, this man is adorable, he called me his favourite French girl :-). Allen even came to us later and asked if we wanted to have a fortune teller read our hands.
I started and he told me a lot of things that are actually true, I was a bit surprised by some of them, for example when I asked how long it would take me to reach the level I want in JKD, he answered 3 years, this is exactly what Micke had wrote on facebook a couple of weeks ago ..
When Micke sat he took his hand and said “OH here we have a JKD Master, you are a strong man”! He turned to his father and said “this is a strong man, you have a dragon in you” …….. Oh man, didn’t I hear that for the rest of the trip and still…….
The party was nice, meeting Bruce’s family and friends was a great opportunity, but we really missed our Sifu Ted… After the party we went to the Hilton nearby to have a drink with our friends, we also met Allen again, he told Micke: “so she is one of your top students as I´ve seen, you take care of her ! ” 🙂
This is the Alcatraz day!!! as we missed our first tickets, we could book them again and this was the only day and time available. At 9.20 am the boat left from Pier 33.
Alcatraz was sensational, some mixed feelings though when I stepped in a block D cell , it felt strange and uncomfortable, I was thinking about being locked in there , no light , nothing , just four walls… The audio tour with inmates and guards telling the stories and the final incredible escape, was brilliant.
On the way back we stopped at Pier 39, at the Crab House restaurant, ah! the best Crabs and Service ever!
And of course, I had to go to China town one more time… I wanted to buy a frog and I ended up with two Lions (for protection) instead.
Later we met Mike and Dan again at the Hotel just before they would fly back to Colorado.We exchanged some T shirts and I got a big white JKD Colorado T -shirt 🙂 Micke got a black one. We really get along with those guys, we planned to meet them again.
Monday 29th, last day
We had planned to go to the airport around 12, up early I thought we had time for another round to China Town, yes I was obsessed By it, I loved the feeling I had there, I just needed to be there one last time ( and I got my frog this time 🙂 )
I can say this trip was the best trip of my life, I will never forget it.
We almost did not make it but we did and today I can say it was worth paying two times for it, I am happy I took that decision.