First a brief summary of what happened in the first days...
Wednesday 28th October: the big move at last!
Yes after all these months of 'Ifs', 'Hows' and 'Whats' here we are!
Our new adventures to the New World started at the crack of dawn. Alarm clock set up for 2.30 am... the taxi took us and our 300 kilos of luggages/pets/hopes/worries at 3 am, pets checking in at 3.30, for a flight for Amsterdam at 5.55am.
Is Ce thinking“Jeez are we making a BIG mistake?” or is she recovering from her months of 2 hour-sleep nights and heavy stress?
Both answers being correct, you are not entitled to any reward or prize for guessing.
The flight from Amsterdam to SF was REALLY long as we've had to go back to AMS after only 90 minutes because the plane water system broke down (better technical failure than the engine failure, but still... a real pain!). Apparently 324 people stuck in a flying box for 10 hours without a working flush system is not recommended by the American and European Air Regulations, so said the stewardess.
The delay of 5 hours would have been bearable without the thought of our wee monsters stuck, scared and starved in their tiny box.
All in all we arrived in SF, I quickly fast forward the immigration interview part as it gives us an ulcer every time we talk/think about it... More huffing and puffing to get our rental car, and we finally (and directly) arrive at the lovely place that Ce had found for the 4 of us in the Mexican part of the city, around 11pm. Thanks to the US road architects who only know about square crossing of streets and label them by numbers!
But there were still more obstacles between us and our bed: first we had to find some cat litter and some food for everybody, a parking slot, and finally had to shower Petit Gris (28 hours in a box has some really dirty and smelly consequences…) and at last after a really stressful and long day of nearly 36 hours it was time to go to bed. Shattered does not even describe our physical and mental state, which actually prevented us to really fall asleep.
Thursday 29th-Friday 30th October
Lots of administrative stuff for Ce. She had to get her National Insurance number and open a new Bank account. She decided to go to Wells Fargo because they are locals and have a really interesting History.
Both procedures were extremely straightforward and quick. The highlight of them being when Ce had to choose the pattern she wanted for her Check books... ! Most of them were hilarious at best but mostly tacky (SpongeBog Square pants, Walt Disney, puppies, various religious signs and other awful landscapes were some of the possibilities-see pdf doc link) She took the one with the "Famous American landscapes" after plenty of hesitation and laughs.
Saturday 31st October and Sunday 1st November
Week-end dedicated to flat chasing. A stressful process but quite enjoyable as we had to cover a lot of territory, hence we saw plenty of SF.
We kept asking each other how on earth we did not like this city the first time we came here as it is such a brilliant, lively, cosmopolitan AND sunny place.
Two flats made the final. Ce wanted the one with the huge kitchen, and I wanted the one away from the big road. I won because “mine” is cheaper and has a lovely garden. We plan to train Petit Gris and Gribouille to pick up the fruits from the backyard and to bake us some fruit tarts. It is not directly accessible from our flat but it will be a charming place where to share BBQ with our neighbours during the Summer.
We spent our saturday afternoon in the Castro district (the Gay Mecca for those who don't know about it). That was particularly enjoyable as it was Halloween weekend and a number of people were wearing their party dresses (or very little actually).