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SoCal Meets NorCal: My Trip To San Francisco

As a SoCal girl, I have not had many chances to go up north and experience what the the Bay Area has to offer. However, during winter break, after Christmas, I finally had the opportunity to do so. Since I did not want to drive six to seven hours from Orange County to San Francisco myself, I decided to take a bus. Although the bus ride was long, I felt like a real tourist heading toward a new destination. This trip is something that I will always remember, especially since it was my first time being able to travel somewhat far away with a friend and without my family.  So for three days, I transformed into a NorCal tourist. 

Of course, as a tourist, I had to visit the places that San Francisco was known for. One of the places I visited was The Painted Ladies, which is a row of homes that is commonly known for being featured in the television series, Full House. The houses themselves were beautiful, and being in the vicinity of these houses even made me feel like I was a guest in the show. I walked half an hour with a friend to reach this destination, and it was one of the most memorable events before actually arriving. While walking, I was able to get a better sense of what life in San Francisco was like. The streets were constantly busy, with people, buses and cars constantly moving. Moreover, many walls that I passed by had varieties of art that caught my eye, and these walls seemed to be everywhere. 

Like Los Angeles, San Francisco has its own Chinatown and Japantown. Although I did not stay in Chinatown for too long, I was able to pass by some shops and restaurants that showcased Chinese culture. Many shops had a welcoming vibe that invited me in to just peruse through the many items they sold. More of my time was spent in Japantown, which also offered a vast variety of shops and restaurants. It was fun to just walk through this plaza and look at unique items that I would not be able to find at local shops near my own home. Japantown was filled with people, and I had a great time just taking in the warm energy from the people around me. 

If I did not visit the Golden Gate Bridge, can I really say I went to San Francisco? Of course, I had to visit the bridge and see its magnificence for myself. Up close, I really saw how large the bridge was and how horrible the traffic could be on it. Its size was daunting because it just seemed so gigantic compared to my height. This made me realize how such amazing architecture could result from the work of individuals. 

This trip to San Francisco holds a special place in my heart because it was the first independent trip I took far from home. Although I only stayed in the Bay Area for three days, I got to travel to many of its famous places and eat good food. Hopefully, I can return again sometime in the future and travel to even more places and perhaps even drive there myself. Now, I can also say that this SoCal girl was able to finally meet NorCal!

Jamie Vu

UCLA '23

Jamie is a second year student at UCLA. She loves to listen to music and enjoys going to concerts and listening to artists live. During her free time, she likes to go out and explore.
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