Day 27 San Francisco! Alcatraz!

Well, washing my top (as recommended by the cleaner) did not remove the green paint stain.  So one of today’s tasks is to return to the restaurant for compensation…

This morning we used the very useful Muni trip planner and found a great bus (28) which went from a street below us down to Fisherman’s Wharf and then a bit of a walk to Pier 33 to catch the ferry to Alcatraz!

It was a beautiful blue sky day and it was lovely to be outside, around the wharf and then on the water.  It was a fairly short trip (about 20 minutes) to the ‘Rock’.  We got our mandatory briefing and then headed off to collect our headsets.  The audio tour of the cell block was fantastic.  Lots of stories including those about the escape attempts.
View to Alcatraz
DSC_0937Alcatraz CellsAlcatraz CellsAlcatraz cellAlcatraz cell

One of the fake heads created from concrete by during the Escape From Alcatraz attempt.
Alcatraz dummy head

The isolation cells did not look pleasant.  They could be kept in darkness.

Showering did not look like a pleasant experience.
Alcatraz ShowersAlcatraz showers

A view back to San Francisco form one of the small windows in the corridor.  It is said that on still nights the sounds of laughter and music could be heard from across the bay in San Francisco.  A further taunt to the prisoners.
Alcatraz view to San FranciscoAlcatraz

The Warden’s house has gone to ruin but the garden growing in it is gorgeous.
Alcatraz Warden's House garden

More gardens growing where the employees used to live.
Garden on AlcatrazGarden on Alcatraz

These cute ducks were in the exercise yard and were trying to head out of the enclosure through the gate.  As they neared it, the big duck honked and looked around the corner.  Unfortunately there were people coming up the stairs outside and there was a stand off for quite a while as tourists came up behind them as well and then spent lots of time photographing them…

Views from the ferry back to San Francisco.
View to San Francisco

The steep streets of yesterday were easily visible and seemed to sparkle with the sun reflecting off the vehicles driving up and down.
View to San FranciscoView to Golden Gate

The currents look like enough to deter any escape attempts…Currents

It is like the American (and more modern) version of Port Arthur.  It only became the Federal penitentiary in 1934 after serving as an army barracks.

Back on dry land, we headed into areas of Fisherman’s Wharf that we hadn’t covered yesterday.  First stop was the Hawaiin Pearl Company where for $14.99US I could select an oyster, have it opened in front of me and keep the pearl.

We called by the restaurant responsible for the paint dropping onto my top yesterday and they paid up the $75 US in cash.  Whoo hoo! More shopping!

Caught the train to Union Square and found Anthropologie (my favourite shop because all of the fabrics are so beautiful and soft).  Bought some jeans.  There goes that $75 plus dollars…

We went out for Mexican in a bar with ice hockey, baseball and Lacrosse playing on the TVs.  I do not normally like sport on TV but I’m becoming addicted to the bars and American sport.  Completely unheard of!
Mexican bar food Mexican bar food Mexican bar food Mexican bar food