November 30, 2018

Berkeley: Guerilla Cafe


80 North

Guerilla Cafe  1620 Shattuck Ave./Cedar St., Gourmet Ghetto, (510) 845-2233.  B-L daily. 

exterior of Guerilla Cafe in Berkeley, California
exterior of Guerilla Cafe in Berkeley, California

This narrow hole in the wall seems somehow intimidating, but once you’re inside the atmosphere is warm and welcoming.  It has a comfortable, casual cafe vibe, with local art on the walls.  Seating consists of a long counter with round stools, and a few tables with chairs both indoors and outdoors.  Customers order at the front counter, then take a seat.  Breakfast includes a variety of pastries--the mini scones are mega good and the popular gluten-free mochi muffins are usually gone--as well as an assortment of egg dishes, polenta porridge, and a waffle of the day (are you up for lemon-poppyseed?), but no bacon.  The chai latte is delish, and a rich hot chocolate is also exceptional.  Lunch items include a savory polenta topped with mushrooms, sun-dried tomatoes, and a drizzle of truffle oil, and the soup is always vegetarian.  Breakfast is served until 2 p.m.; lunch begins at 10:30 a.m.

Guerilla Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

interior of Guerilla Cafe in Berkeley, California
interior of Guerilla Cafe in Berkeley, California


barista at Guerilla Cafe in Berkeley, California
barista at Guerilla Cafe in Berkeley, California


chai latte and mini scone at Guerilla Cafe in Berkeley, California
chai latte and mini scone at Guerilla Cafe in Berkeley, California


menu at Guerilla Cafe in Berkeley, California
menu at Guerilla Cafe in Berkeley, California


More things to do in Berkeley. 
 
Way more thing to do in Berkeley.  
 
More ideas for exploring Northern California.
 

images ©2018 Carole Terwilliger Meyers

November 27, 2018

San Francisco: The Great Dickens Christmas Fair


San Francisco

The Great Dickens Christmas Fair  $30, 5-12 $14; parking $12.  No pets.

Father Christmas at The Great Dickens Christmas Fair in San Francisco
Father Christmas at The Great Dickens Christmas Fair in San Francisco

          See "A Christmas Carol" brought to life at this re-creation of Christmas in Victorian London.  After playing spirited parlour games, purchasing some fine yuletide gifts, and feasting on period food and drink (my favorites are the banger sandwich and the hot cider), even the grumpiest Scrooge will capture the season’s spirit.

Charles Dickens at The Great Dickens Christmas Fair in San Francisco
Charles Dickens at The Great Dickens Christmas Fair in San Francisco


plate of bangers at The Great Dickens Christmas Fair in San Francisco
plate of bangers at The Great Dickens Christmas Fair in San Francisco


characters belly up to the bar at The Great Dickens Christmas Fair in San Francisco
characters belly up to the bar at The Great Dickens Christmas Fair in San Francisco

          Special shops include a hair-braiding parlour on Petticoat lane and a children’s clothing shop not far away on Nickelby Road--little girls between the ages of 5 and 8 are in heaven here.  Entertainment is continuous and includes parades, theatrical performances, and caroling--even dancing with Mr. and Mrs. Fezziwig and guests at their celebrated party.  And as if this isn't enough, Her Majesty Queen Victoria and consort Prince Albert always attend.  Visitors are encouraged to dress in period costume.

boys paint ornaments at The Great Dickens Christmas Fair in San Francisco
boys paint ornaments at The Great Dickens Christmas Fair in San Francisco


ladies get braids at The Great Dickens Christmas Fair in San Francisco
ladies get braids at The Great Dickens Christmas Fair in San Francisco


young girl in purple taffeta dress at The Great Dickens Christmas Fair in San Francisco
young girl in purple taffeta dress at The Great Dickens Christmas Fair in San Francisco


portrait painter at The Great Dickens Christmas Fair in San Francisco
portrait painter at The Great Dickens Christmas Fair in San Francisco


Queen Victoria sips tea at The Great Dickens Christmas Fair in San Francisco
Queen Victoria sips tea at The Great Dickens Christmas Fair in San Francisco




          High Tea is served by Cuthbert’s (a private concession) in the Tea Parlour every day at 4 p.m. ($27).  Reservations are required and can be made online or when you arrive at the fair.  If you’d like to see the popular Saucy French Postcards Tableaux Revue, you need to secure a separate free ticket when you arrive at the fair.  Shows are presented daily at 5:30 and 6:15 p.m. for adults over 18 years of age only.

tea time at The Great Dickens Christmas Fair in San Francisco
tea time at The Great Dickens Christmas Fair in San Francisco

Things you’ll want to know:
●A fair map, show schedules, and special Children's Tour are included in the free souvenir program provided as you enter the fair gate (they are also available in advance online).
●The Scrooge Special offers “twilight tickets” after 3 p.m. (adults $18, children $10).
●You can ride BART or Muni to the Glen Park BART Station, then just outside board a free shuttle to and from the fair that runs every half hour from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.  I did this myself and found it to be easy and efficient, and the shuttle dropped me right at the entrance to the fair.
          It is hard to believe that it has been more than 35 years since this festive event originated in San Francisco.  More images.



More Bay Area Christmas events.

Way more things to do in San Francisco. 

More ideas for exploring Northern California. 

images and video ©2018 Carole Terwilliger Meyers

November 14, 2018

San Francisco: Transamerica Redwood Park


San Francisco

Transamerica Redwood Park  600 Montgomery St./Merchant St.  M-F 7am-5:30pm.  Situated on the east side of the Transamerica Pyramid building,  this privately owned redwood grove is found unexpectedly in the middle of San Francisco’s skyscrapers.  Trees for the half-acre grove were brought in from the Santa Cruz Mountains and transplanted in 1957.  There are now 56, and some reach 100 feet.  And who knows?  Perhaps these trees will one day be as tall as the pyramid itself.  Benches and tables offer visitors respite, but note that this urban park is locked up each night.

Transamerica Redwood Park in San Francisco's Financial District
Transamerica Redwood Park in San Francisco's Financial District


Transamerica Redwood Park in San Francisco's Financial District
Transamerica Redwood Park in San Francisco's Financial District


More redwoods.

More things to do in San Francisco's Financial District.

More things to do in San Francisco 

Way more things to do in San Francisco. 

More ideas for exploring Northern California. 

images ©2018 Carole Terwilliger Meyers

November 2, 2018

Bishop: Laws Railroad Museum and Historic Site


High Sierra: Highway 395

Laws Railroad Museum and Historic Site  Off Hwy. 6, 4.5 mi. N of Bishop, (760) 873-5950.  Daily 10am-4pm.  $5; train rides additional.  No dogs.

visitor center at Laws Railroad Museum and Historic Site in Bishop, California
visitor center at Laws Railroad Museum and Historic Site in Bishop, California


antique train at Laws Railroad Museum and Historic Site in Bishop, California
antique train at Laws Railroad Museum and Historic Site in Bishop, California

A replication of the 1883 frontier community of Laws that developed here as a railroad depot for Bishop, this 11-acre facility features 30 original 19th-century buildings.  Some were here from the past, and others were brought in to recreate the town.  You can visit a newspaper office, a beauty parlor with a scary-looking permanent wave machine,

permanent wave machine at Laws Railroad Museum and Historic Site in Bishop, California
permanent wave machine at Laws Railroad Museum and Historic Site in Bishop, California

a post office, a medical building, a replica mine shaft and headframe, and way more.  When the town sprang up, nearby Keeler was the largest producer of silver in California and Laws had as many residents as Bishop.  Vintage locomotives and railroad equipment as well as mining equipment are sometimes operated.  A restored Death Valley tourist railroad car is restored and often available for rides on summer weekends.

restored Death Valley tourist railroad car at Laws Railroad Museum and Historic Site in Bishop, California
restored Death Valley tourist railroad car at Laws Railroad Museum and Historic Site in Bishop, California

This railroad shut down in 1959, hurt by the popularity of trucking.  “Nevada Smith” starring Steve McQueen was filmed here in 1965.  Visitors can wander through on their own, but sometimes docents are available for a tour.  Pack along a picnic.

These videos are tons of fun:


This handcar was built from a kit.















More things to do along Highway 395.

More things to do in nearby Yosemite.

images and videos ©2018 Carole Terwilliger Meyers
docent in videos is Jay Smart