After looking out the Window from my flight and reaching there, San Francisco from the outside seemed nothing too much like what I had expected. I think was expecting for a small, cute city -- perhaps 5x the size of Queenstown but sharing a similar feel to it -- and instead, what I saw was huge flyovers like any big city (Bombay mostly, it reminded me of) and in general a lot larger than anything I could have imagined. After waiting for an hour at the airport to try and arrange transportation to my hotel, I decided to pay a little extra and simply take the taxi there. It cost a whole $40, which is beyond what I expected to pay, but seeing that it was almost night time and it seeemed like midnight (though it was only around 6pm), and that that was the only taxi I could find, it all seemed reasonable for some reason.
The taxi driver was an old Indian man who had lived here with his family for the last 20 years. We talked a little about living outside our respective countries, and he shared the same opinion as my parents regarding returning to India after putting kids to college. We hit it off in that respect, and like the Fijian Indian lady I had met, again it was interesting to meet someone with a similar background but who lived in an extremely different environment than myself. He informed me a little about the city, too.
So, what did I think of the city? Well, "interesting" would be the right word. It's much much different to whatever -- and anything -- I could have expected. From the outskirts, looking at the flyovers, fast cars, right-driving lanes, I was a little surprised. I'm not sure for what reason, I guess I didn't expect it, and America as a whole country, to be so different. From the inside, San Francisco reminded me of New York a little seeing the streets and the skyscrapers, but I guess that's only because I'm not used to tall buildings and big cities and busy streets.
So after checking in to Mithila hotel and having slept for about five hours, here I am, writing this. I'm not sure about what to do tomorrow. I'm a little worried that I don't have a phone (and hence no EDGE/GRPS Internet to use at any other place than where I am now itself), so I'll be out of touch when I am outside and I'm afraid to spend another $40 on a taxi. My budget is literally to ground zero, so I'll probably have to do a lot of walking to fetch food. Also, I have a booked tour for tomorrow, but I wasn't able to print out the confirmation voucher -- something that's essentially needed -- so I called them yesterday (i.e. five hours ago) and asked them to fax it over to my hotel, and arrange pickup at my hotel. I'm going to sleep till about 7:30 now and then wake up, eat breakfast, and possibly expect a phone call from them. If they call, that's great, I'll take the tour. If not, I guess that's $60 down the drain, so I'll find something else to do. Yahoo! Travel will help. :-)