The Last Day | SF 2017

Last time on SF 2017, I visited Yelp HQ and saw one of my oldest friends in her new home city before being reminded that I am not immune to jet lag and I cannot party as hard as I used to. But here’s to the weekend!


A few weeks before our trip, I booked a brunch reservation for Saturday and kept it late so that Ben and I could sleep in a bit, knowing that we were going to be suffering from jet lag and late nights especially since Ben had been working so hard on his presentation just a few days prior.

After really enjoying those thick black-out curtains and abundant pillows that make hotel sleep so satisfying, we got up, got washed, and got ready to head out for brunch. I wanted us to leave a bit early so we could see the famous Painted Ladies and then walk over, so I called us a Lyft and waited.

… and waited and waited. The car never showed up, so I cancelled it and called a new one, because now we were unable to take a small walk to brunch and make our reservation. But then that car didn’t show up either, and it got stuck at the same place as the last car. Ben and I walked out of the hotel and discovered that Market Street was blocked off for the St. Patrick’s Day parade. GO FIGURE. There was hella traffic (some Cali lingo for you West Coasters!) and we had no choice but to start walking in the direction of brunch (over 3 miles away) and try to catch a Lyft after we got away from traffic so that our table wouldn’t be given away. I called the restaurant and then began to power-walk/casually run westwards, gawking at how many cars were stuck downtown trying to get past this parade. After a fair bit of drama trying to figure out how to optimize getting into a Lyft and onwards to the right direction, and with the great driving instincts of our driver, we finally made it to nopa, a little sweaty and very hungry.

DSC03388DSC03389The restaurant was actually not that full when we arrived after 1pm, but it filled up pretty soon after we ordered our food. We weren’t sure what to get and weren’t really vibin’ the menu (still too sweaty), but I went for some yummy sounding items and hoped for the best.

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Custard French toast
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Butter-basted eggs

We didn’t really love the food, so we opted not to order more and just munch more later somewhere else. But off to see the Painted Ladies from Alamo Park!

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… so the park was closed and we were only able to see these Victorian houses from real up close it was pretty disappointing, because I really wanted to lay out on the grass and relax a bit while humming the theme from Full House. (ūüé∂Whatever happened to predictability…ūüé∂)

Walking up this ridiculous hill took quite a bit out of us, so we got a ride over to the Palace of Fine Arts so that I could take Ben for the walk that Christine showed me last time I was here.

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They were actually setting up for a wedding here that day!

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Of course, I brought Ben to Crissy Field as well, and it was strange and different but not bad to share my personal, peaceful place with him. I was really glad to have been able to share this special place.

We started walking towards Pier 39 to check out the sea lions, since it was a really beautiful day and we didn’t mind walking pasts the piers. Since that is a 3-mile journey, we walked about halfway and then got a little ride so we wouldn’t be exhausted and late by the time we arrived.

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I started to feel really hungry, since we never managed to find food after an only-okay brunch, but I didn’t want to spoil my appetite for dinner. Then I saw a place that advertised beignets and I had to eat SOMETHING. (But I didn’t let myself have beignets, in an attempt to exercise some semblance of willpower.) So I shared some fried seafood and oysters with Ben so as not to be drooling when I showed up for dinner.

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After a super quick Daiso run (why don’t we have these on the East Coast, can someone please tell me), it was off to fulfill 3 big goals of this SF trip:

  1. Be reunited with Christine
  2. Evaluate Meet her new boyfriend
  3. Eat cioppino!

The last one was another goal that was something I regretted not doing my last trip, similar to my trip to the Walt Disney Family Museum. I didn’t have specific ideas about what I wanted to eat in San Francisco last fall, and when I saw a sign for “Cioppino’s” at Fisherman’s Wharf, I remembered this delicious seafood stew that I first tasted in Alaska, strangely enough, and was invented here in the City by the Bay! I kicked myself for not seeking it out then and made sure to get some this time around. After some searching, many people mentioned Sotto Mare as the place to go; even when they found a new go-to, it was compared to Sotto Mare. Since Christine had been meaning to try their famous cioppino as well, it was an easy decision where we should eat and what we should get.

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As you can see, I really had a hankering for oysters…

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This was so tasty and we probably only needed one to share between the 4 of us but man, I still think about this yummy stew with pasta and seafood and that crab meat!! “Best Damn Crab Cioppino” indeed.

It was a lot of fun hanging with Christine and Phil, and I was so happy to meet Phil because he was really cool and seems to make Christine happy. Plus he was so easy to like!

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With that, Ben and I walked back to our hotel to get packed and get going, as our flight was at 7AM the next morning. Which happened to be Daylight Saving Time, so really… we did not get very much sleep before our flight. (I actually, bizarrely, woke up about 2 hours after I fell asleep and just stayed awake until I got on the plane, so… that was a thing.)

We had a really lovely time in San Francisco, and I still can’t believe that I got to visit again so soon after my last visit, especially given how long it had been since the visit before that one!

I’ll be back again someday soon.

Where should I visit the next time I’m in San Francisco?
And where do you think I can pass on?

What city should I visit next? There are still a lot of American cities I haven’t seen, even on the East Coast!

 

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Sin City Demands Sin… | Spring Break 2016

Last time on Spring Break 2016, the bachelorette party crew enjoyed a lot of good food, some poolside chillin’, and an amazing concert at the new T-Mobile Arena by The Killers, with Wayne Newton, Shamir, and special appearances by the Blue Man Group and Dan Reynolds from Imagine Dragons. After all that excitement, it was time to get ready to leave Las Vegas…


Thursday was our last day in Vegas, and I woke up with the sun yet again despite how dead-tired I was the day before. But it was going to be our last time seeing the desert and the craziness that is Las Vegas, so we just enjoyed it while packing our things. At this point, Kristine had already flown to LA (which I momentarily forgot when I woke up and thought I had kicked her off the bed whoops) so Megan, Jennifer, and I just chilled and finished the champagne and orange juice we had while waiting for the boys to pick us up in the rental cars and watching HGTV. (I think I understand why people get so into HGTV now; we watched two full episodes of Flip or Flop because we just felt too invested.)

I was so willing to wait through anything, though, because the bachelor and bachelorette party crews were finally uniting over a magical thing: gluttony at Wicked Spoon. I am a big fan of buffets and was pretty excited to try out the caliber of buffet that Vegas offered, seeing so many trips by so many friends that checked off this Deadly Sin off their list.

Welcome to Wicked Spoon
Welcome to Wicked Spoon

Considering that we had been waiting in our hotel for this epic food-stuffing for over an hour, we were completely famished. Walking in was a little bit overwhelming for me, because I knew that I wanted to pace myself but also that I wanted to eat a lot of food and fast. These, as you can imagine, are conflicting goals. So, I took a stroll around the buffet to get an idea of what I definitely wanted to eat and what could be passed over in case I got too full.

A view of the buffet
A view of a portion of the buffet (the salad part, because goodness knows I needed this section)

Wicked Spoon is nice in that they do small, individual portions of food instead of having you scoop out too much of every dish and realizing that you got too excited too soon. (This happens to you too, right? … right??) So they call it “small plates”-style but it’s perfect because you just get a little dish of food and you don’t have to share anything muahahahah!¬†¬†This also aids in pacing because you can only fit so many little dishes onto your plate.

Let’s just share some photos of my food now, shall we?Read More »

Gotta Gotta Get Down… in Vegas| Spring Break 2016

Last time on Spring Break 2016, I landed in Vegas for my friend, Megan’s, bachelorette party and we headed straight to the club to get our dance on. After 26 hours awake and a weird song choice by the DJ, we called it a night so we could have energy for the next day…


I was pretty surprised by how not-late I woke up, thanks in no small part to the sun streaming through our open window. It was my first full day in Las Vegas (and Paradise, if you want to pick bones about it) and I was excited to leave the frigid cold of the DC area behind. (The day before my flight, I endured a blustery 30¬įF walk to work.)

The view of the desert from our hotel
The view of the desert from our hotel

First order of business was brunch/lunch at Mon Ami Gabi! We actually do have locations in the DC metro region, but none of ours are below the Eiffel Tower with a gorgeous view of “Paris”. I have never been to the locations over here and I’m not sure I can ever go knowing that it won’t be as magical as it was over in Vegas. It’s a really cute restaurant, and the hyperrealism that Beaudrillard wrote about is in full force here as you sit in a “Parisian cafe” on the Strip. In anticipation of eating a lot of waistline-unfriendly food for this trip, I stuck with a really yummy salad and we all kicked off the day with yummy food in our bellies.

Ah, la vie en rose...
Sous le ciel de Paris, erm… Las Vegas
Salad with salmon! (Full disclosure: I thought this was going to be smoked salmon, but this was actually very well cooked.)
Salad with salmon! (Full disclosure: I thought this was going to be smoked salmon, but this was actually very well cooked.)

Meanwhile, the bachelor party crew was at Hash House a Go Go. While I had seen Christine mention going there before, I didn’t realize that the portions were¬†hilariously humongous, as evidenced by the photos we were sent to incur jealousy. Warning: You may want to share food here, do not try to be a hero!Read More »

Spring Break 2015: Key West (Day 2)

Last time on Spring Break 2015, we spent a day in Fort Lauderdale and then spent 4 hours driving to Key West. Upon arrival, we had a taste of night life and curled up on a beach to recuperate before another full day of fun.


I wish I could say that I awoke peacefully to the gentle warmth and glow of the sun, peeking over the sea as I slept with the smell of salt and sea in my hair.

Sunrise on the beach
Beach sunrise…
Sunrise on the beach with waves on the rocks
Breathe in the serenity… it doesn’t last

In reality, we had barely settled into our sleeping positions on the beach and in the car when I learned something the hard way:

Key West has feral chickens. I found out when, at 3 AM, I heard a rooster crowing its lungs out. And then no fewer than 2 roosters joined that one. There was a proud rooster, with a confident crow, and a very sad rooster with a depressingly dejected one. I wish I knew¬†why 3 AM was when they decided to start crowing, because cartoons and movies have told me that roosters crow when the sun rises. Clearly, these roosters didn’t get that memo.

Rooster
Cocky…

I was under the impression that these roosters belonged to one of the houses nearby, but when I woke up, I saw them wandering around. A cocky rooster strutting around and¬†still crowing, a few hens, even some chicks! I was very excited to see those adorable chicks but I do with I was less cranky at this point in time. I can sleep through almost anything. I’ve fallen asleep standing up, I routinely sleep in any and all public transportation, I have even nodded off on the stairs. But there are 2 things that will keep me from falling asleep no matter how sleepy I am and that will wake me up no matter how deeply I’m sleeping: (1) Snoring and (2) ROOSTERS CROWING. I discovered the power of the rooster crow when I was in China over a decade ago and first successfully stayed up all night thanks to the roosters next door.

Chick next to chicken
Chick + chicken = almost forgiven BUT NOT REALLY

Let’s move on from the roosters, as we kept seeing them throughout the day (they’re everywhere). Just know that every time I saw them, I tried to give them the most menacing glare I could.

I did get to enjoy a really serene ocean sunrise when I was done staring down these roosters and their families. From there, we went to breakfast at¬†Southernmost Beach Cafe. (Since this is Key West, “southernmost” was a recurring theme in the naming of local establishments.) I filled my belly with chicken and waffles because we already had two smoked salmon omelettes at the table.

Chicken and waffles with candied pecans and cayenne maple syrup
Chicken and waffles with candied pecans and cayenne maple syrup
Eggs benedict
More eggs benny!

We had a big day ahead of us in Key West! First, we set up at a proper campsite¬†at Boyd’s Campground, which provided a nice spot for us to rest our heads next to the water.

View from our campsite
View from our campsite
Our tent and our rental hatchback
Our tent and our rental hatchback

We walked around for a bit, getting our bearings and seeing what this town looked like in daylight. (I was so surprised by how many people were sunburned that early in the day. Did these folks not know how the sun works by now?)

A romantic and somewhat unsettling statue
A romantic and somewhat unsettling statue
Pelican? at the docks
A friend we made while walking

Our biggest adventure was:¬†snorkeling! I’ve never been snorkeling before and I was so excited because, I mean, I’ve been obsessed with¬†The Little Mermaid for so long and with marine life in general for so long now. The idea of us being out there, swimming with the fishies LITERALLY was so exciting to me. The weather was perfect for a day out on the sea and the Floridays crew was so nice to us! They were friendly but not too friendly because they understand you’re out here to get to know the fish, not the captain of the boat. I felt really safe and at ease, even when I started feeling nauseous and watched half of the other passengers throw up over the side of the boat. (For those interested, going snorkeling with Floridays includes beverages. I just had myself a ginger ale because of my belly, but you could have something with more of an edge to it if you wanted, as well.)

View from the boat
The only photo I have is from our boat ride out to the reef…

Being my first time snorkeling, I had a bit of trouble with the breathing. (So much for those mermaid dreams.) I got water in my goggles and in my snorkel pretty often, and at one point, I had floated to a really shallow part of the reef. I was too scared to move for fear of kicking at the coral with my flippers, but the waves were really rough in that area to the point where I was worried the water itself would slam me into the reefs. But¬†wow was it amazing. The fish weren’t afraid of me — even though I was covered in a lot of SPF 90 — and I saw so many different kinds of fish and coral out there. It was seriously one of the most magical experiences I’ve ever had an it was easily the highlight of Key West for me and one of the high points of the entire trip. I wish I had photos to share but I will seriously cherish the memory of being as close to a mermaid as I will ever be. Also, I cannot recommend snorkeling in Key West enough, especially with Floridays.

Of course, since we were in Key West, I was told by friends that it was mandatory that I get key lime pie on a stick dipped in chocolate. So I did!

The classic - key lime pie, frozen, put on a stick, dipped in chocolate
The classic – key lime pie, frozen, put on a stick, dipped in chocolate

Since we had some time before sunset, we had dinner. Kind of. First, we stopped by The Conch Shack because, when in Key West and not eating key lime pie, you gotta try some conch.¬†¬†Between the 4 of us, we split a conch sampler (conch fritters, conch ceviche, cracked¬†conch, and fries) and a seafood sampler (conch fritters, fried fish, fried shrimp, and fries). This was literally a little shack with amazing fried seafood and — the highlight of this shack — misters that would spray a fine mist of cool water on you as you walked round to the seating area. Delicious food, refreshing mist… stop by here when you want to get some conch in Key West. As it turns out, we wanted to balance out our meal more, which is why we split our orders at The Conch Shack. We stopped by¬†Hogfish Bar & Grill¬†for a more traditional dining experience. (We didn’t have hogfish but yo, hogfish are terrifying looking.) I wanted to balance out all that fried goodness I had earlier, so I ordered a ceviche with the waitress’s promise that it had lots of veggies. We had okay food there, but we really just wanted to wait for sunset with ice water in a cool restaurant, to be totally honest. (It was open air, so there was no AC, but being out of the sun and in front of a fan really helped.)

Sign denoting Conch Shack

Food from Conch Shack
Yummmmmmmmmm

We rounded out the evening by going to Mallory Square for the Sunset Celebration. Talented street performers come out and put on some amazing shows while vendors provide food and handmade crafts. It was super cool in that it highlighted these local talents in this beautiful place. The performers themselves! I mean they should be on¬†America’s Got Talent, they were incredible. I wish nothing but the best for them.

Man in top hap doing a hand stand on chairs
Not pictured: the 8 (!!!) chairs that were stacked below his hands/feet

It also didn’t hurt at all that Mallory Square is gorgeous at sunset. This is definitely another must-do Key West activity.

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The evening ended with us returning to our campsite — a proper one this time!¬†— and settling down with cold drinks in front of a small bonfire we made. The bonfire was short-lived, as the gravel that comprised the artificial “beach” we camped on had a tendency to POP. A lot. It was pretty dangerous actually, but the fire felt nice because it was that toasty, cozy, dry heat and not the gross humidity that we had been dealing with since touchdown. We all bundled up in our tent (which got a little too warm because there wasn’t much airflow through it) and had a pretty good night’s sleep.

Campfire

Spring Break 2015: Fort Lauderdale (Day 1)

Yelp had their annual spring break in Fort Lauderdale this year. Even though I have gone to Yelp’s Winter Break in Atlantic City, I never really give any thought to going to Yelp’s Spring Break because they’re usually pretty far and I don’t like thinking about the travel logistics. Even when my friend Annie tried her darnedest to convince me to go along with her and our friend Tim, as they were going to make a stop at the Bahamas, I was not too keen on risking vacation days while I was interviewing for new jobs. HOWEVER, the plan then changed to include dining at Cinderella’s Castle at Disney World and I was instantly sold. Fast-forward a few weeks later, and we were ready for spring break!


After I taught Ben the virtues of rolling and making things fit into a backpack for travel, we dragged ourselves up at 4 AM on Saturday morning to fly down to Fort Lauderdale. Things went pretty smoothly with long-term parking. Ben wouldn’t let me have a doughnut because we were still trying to keep our bodies beach-ready, but hangriness aside, it was smooth sailing.

It was our first time flying with a budget airline rather than the ones we had accrued miles with, but we were really pleasantly surprised because we were fortunate enough to get front-row seats. That translate to¬†more leg room than we’ve ever had before, which was a wonderful treat for Ben, who, at 6’3″, ALWAYS¬†finds his legs cramped on airplanes. Towards the end of our flight, we chatted a bit with a lovely and extraordinary lady who had visited so many places and accomplished so much but spoke of her life experiences like they were so ordinary. It was kind of fascinating listening to her talk about her past adventures and her upcoming reunion with her brother, and I think that chat really got me and Ben raring to have our own adventures in Florida.

Soooooooo much leg room. Ben is 6'3" so I mean....
Soooooooo much leg room. Ben is 6’3″ so I mean….

Tim and Annie picked us up from the airport and immediately took us for brunch at The Foxy Brown, which had been recommended to them by Blue, the Yelp BPB (Broward-Palm Beach) Community Manager. (Thanks Blue!) I stuffed myself silly and made sure to get my doughnut fix alongside a s’mores waffle and a few bites of the highly touted short rib Benedict.

S'mores waffle
S’moers waffle – Belgian waffle with marshmallow fluff, Nutella, and graham cracker crumble
Doughnut holes
Doughnut holes served with a dusting of powdered sugar and cereal milk for dunking! (Which was needed because these doughnut holes were, unfortunately, quite dry.)
Short rib Benedict + side of fruit
Short rib Benedict had this great braised short rib and a KILLER chimichurri Hollandaise sauce (get more of this on the side, trust me)

After brunch, it was off to my first Yelp activity of the weekend: a tour of the Funky Buddha Brewery. (Apologies for all the lens flare in these photos; my lens was a bit on the dirty side apparently!)

"We are the music makers and we are the dreamers of dreams"
“We are the music makers and we are the dreamers of dreams”
Brewing tanks named "Rylee", "Miles", "Tyler"
They named the brewing equipment after their kids!

Now I’m not really a big beer fan (or a drinker at all, to be quite honest), but I really like learning about anything and everything, so learning about their brewing processes was really cool. Funky Buddha also has a lot of super¬†interesting flavors. I tasted a PB&J that really truly had a peanut butter and jelly sandwich aftertaste, complete with that toasted bread flavor. They were very generous with the samples (a little too generous for me, personally, as I really wasn’t going to drink more than a sip of each one — more for my friends!) but I learned a lot about the brewing methods and the equipment. I even got to smell hops at different stages of brewing, which was really cool. I may not be much of a beer drinker, but I do like chemistry and I’m always excited to learn something new.

Trying out the brews
Trying out the brews
Our new Yelp friends!
Our new Yelp friends in front of the super cute and educational infographic about the brewing process!

From there, we headed to the beach because well, spring break in Florida, right? Well, technically, we made a quick dollar store/drugstore stop because we needed a few things like flip flops, glowsticks, and sunscreen. I really appreciated that all of my friends were very diligent about SPF, although they were probably more attentive because they had been sunburned already and not because they are SPF fiends like myself. The beach itself was great. The ocean water was the perfect temperature, it was a beautiful day, I was with my friends, it was a good time.

Blue skies, blue seas, sandy beaches...
It had been a really long time since I last saw the beach… and it had snowed in DC about 2 weeks before taking this photo, so you can imagine how happy I was…

Until I got stung by a jellyfish. UGH WHY. I was just splashing around happily in the ocean when I felt a burning, stinging pain on the backside of my knee. (The armpit of the¬†knee, if you will.) (The kneepit?) Ben, bless his heart, did not think too much of my yelling because he thought I had a leg cramp. It wasn’t until I went from yellling “OW!” to “SOMETHING GOT ME” that he came over to help me back to shore while my friends kept offering to pee on my leg. (Note: This does NOT work, please DO NOT go around peeing on your friends’ legs or on strangers’ legs. This is a crazy urban legend that exists solely to test your relationship with a person¬†after he/she pees on you, I think. Especially because it will only make the pain worse.) We were so confused looking at the sting because, if anything, it looks like someone scratched me underwater. Some of us were wondering if maybe I got grazed by a fish with sharp fins? In any case, now I have an interesting scar on my left leg and a mild fear of things getting me in the water.

Back of knee with scar
Ouch. The scar is, in fact, still there and will start stinging every few weeks or so.

Well, that cut our beach visit a little short, so we headed back to the AirBnB to shower and check out before our final Yelp activity: a¬†pirate party on a river cruise. I put together my simple Elizabeth Swann outfit and we were out the door without too much of a problem. The real issue came with finding parking, which was dang near impossible. We were SO scared that the boat would leave without us, but there was just no parking to be found. The farther we drove, the more we worried, but we saw people in pirate garb running towards the dock. We also had an emergency where Tim needed to go to the bathroom, and the stress was not helping. We parted ways with him as we tried to find parking and he tried to find a bathroom. At long last, we found parking about a mile away and then tried to run to the boat. As you may remember, I’m awful at running, so this didn’t go over great. ¬†Luckily, we found out mid-run that they had postponed leaving so we were able to walk the rest of the way. Phew! (Note to self: Get fit enough to be able to run a mile.)

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Funky Buddha draught
Funky Buddha makes an appearance with an awesomely-shaped draught
The crew - Annie, Tim, Ben, and myself
The crew – Annie, Tim, Ben, and myself

Pirate cruise group sun

Our new friends!
Our new friends!

While the snacks and drinks on the boat were, as Tim and Annie reported, not as amazing as they were on the earlier days of Yelp’s Spring Break, we still ate a decent amount of food, got some pretty sturdy tote bags from SlickDeals, and got to see a truly amazing view from the top of the boat. On the East Coast, we don’t get to see the sun set into the ocean very often, so this was a nice little treat for us.

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At the end of the evening, while other Yelpers were heading to an afterparty, we piled back into our rental car and started a long drive towards Key West. Along the way, I swear I saw more adult video stores and strip clubs along this road/highway that we were driving along than I had seen cumulatively in my entire life. Why do you need so many of those, Florida? It just seems like there were so many that they couldn’t possibly all be doing really well financially? Are people really unwilling to drive an extra 2 miles to get to one, you have to have them so close together also? It was weird.

One of my favorite things about this drive was how clear the stars were. I’ve never seen the stars like this, because I don’t think I’ve ever been this far south, this close to the equator before, so I was able to look out closer to the horizon and see the Big Dipper, brighter than I had ever seen those stars before. I spent a good portion of that car trip with my face pressed to the window, staring up at the stars. I can’t imagine living far from a city, but seeing the stars like that made me really wonder what life would be like if I could have a view like that every day, unmarred by light pollution.

The night wasn’t over after hours of driving to Key West. The AirBnB hosts had recommended an interesting bar called Garden of Eden, which is a “clothing optional” institution. As you climb the floors of this bar, clothing gets increasingly rare. Unfortunately for my friends, I was feeling really tired and cranky at this point and didn’t want to see any butts or nipples, so I passed on paying the all-too-necessary $5 cover charge for some free dancing elsewhere. Duval Street seemed to be lined with little else than bars and more bars, with one particularly cute place called Smallest Bar that lived up to its name. It was indeed the smallest bar I had ever seen.

"Garden of Eden - Clothing Optional Bar"
Maybe one day when I’m feeling more adventurous, I’ll venture in? (Probably not though, let’s be real.)
"Smallest Bar in Key West"
It’s basically a room and at the back is a bar. It was pretty cute though.
Night life on Duval Street
A lot of partygoers were out and about on Duval Street. It was kind of a hot mess.

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The plan for the end of the evening was just to crash on the beach. I felt really weird about this, especially in my tired/cranky state, so I opted to sleep in the car. (I definitely spend a lot of time sleeping in cars anyway, so this comes second-nature to me.) I learned some tricks for doing this overnight (pro tip: open two car windows about halfway, drape a towel over the door, and shut the door so that you can still have fresh air come in through the towels but no bugs or other random things blowing in through an open window!) and slept pretty well.

Until the wild roosters of Key West started crowing at 3 AM. But we’ll get to that on day 2.

Me cheesing in front of someone's scooter because it seemed like a good idea at the time
Not pictured: The owners of the scooter who were walking up behind me