Chapter 3: Three days in the Bay

   The 28th of February was the Birthday of one of my co-workers in the office. One of the advantages of work in HMC Architects in San Diego is that our office is not too big, so we are more or less like a big family working together. My co-worker is from the Bay Area, (Oakland) so… what could be better idea than go with him to his parent´s house and celebrate his birthday there all together?

   Taking advantage of our 3 days weekend every other week, we flew on Thursday evening to Oakland. First thing that you have to do if you go to the bay Area is go to San Francisco, and as a birthday present, we booked a night tour to “Alcatraz”. One Tip, if you are considering to visit the most famous prison in the United States, try to buy the tickets in advance, at least 1 month before, because they sell out very fast. Although the day was sunny and warm, (yes, this is California, it is February but it feels like spring instead of winter) the wind in the prison island is pretty cold, so a jacket is always welcome.


  After the visit, one of the best things you can do in San Francisco it is to grab something in any of the Micro-Breweries that there are spread around the whole city. The experience of being in a half warehouse ,half bar, full of games to play with other people that are hanging out there too, is amazing. Best place ever where you can meet new people with their stories and also to share yours.

   Saturday was the perfect day to walk around along the Marina waterfront, eat something that we bought at the Farmers Market and charge enough energies to deal with the slope of the San Francisco´s streets. The architects who designed the master plan of this city, did not think about all the inconvenient of walking on the streets. That’s how you realize that the American cities are made for cars and not for the people. After a bit exhausting walk, we ended up in front of the “Palace of the Fine Arts”, completely illuminated in the evening. It is the perfect place to get lost in between their gardens and domes.


The weekend went so fast, it was Sunday and we had to go back to San Diego. We said goodbye to my coworker parents, and we departed to the airport back home. Great long weekend, amazing coworkers-people-friends who since now I will consider my second family.

Last but not least, all these stories, experiences and adventures would not be possible without the help of Architects-US and the J1-Visa Program.

Alberto Lozano

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