Left My Heart & Tech in San Francisco
When I was in Los Angeles on my way to Paso Robles, I was able to stop in and see an old friend. Fifteen years ago I sold my very first business, which was botanical oil lamps, and moved to North Hollywood. The first female friend I had was Jayne Warren. She was this crazy funny girl who I would go see at The Comedy Store. I can’t believe it had been 15 years since I had seen her and way too many years since we had last talked. Thanks to LinkedIn, Jayne reached out to me. That’s why I love social media – bringing people back into my life that I have missed.
My first weekend in town was spent with Phoenix friends who had moved to San Francisco. I come up early to celebrate Stephanie Quilao’s birthday with her. We had an amazing day hanging out at The Ferry Building where we walked through the farmer’s market and bought yummy treats and had a makeshift picnic at the park nearby. Steph is one I can talk to openly about being an emotional empath as she is one too. I love our talks!
To celebrate my 40th birthday, my friend Justin joined us and we went to Press Wine Club for a night of fun and laughter. John Boitnott also showed up but I somehow don’t have a pic of him. Funny as well, is that I ran into a friend I had met at CES the year before, Brian Sadler. It was a great night hanging with friends that have always supported me. What a night!
For Easter, I went out to Half Moon Bay by myself. Celebrating holidays solo is still hard for me. I would have loved to have been somewhere enjoying a good meal with friends and family, but that isn’t always possible when I am traveling. That is a downside of the life I live… I often spend holidays alone. I did a lot of reflecting looking out at these waves though. I’m in love with Half Moon Bay!
That next weekend I was back out to Half Moon Bay and enjoyed time at the Ritz Carlton. This view always makes me smile. I love it there so.
I might love to look out over the coast and watch the waves come in, but I really love hanging out with friends too. I was in luck as I was able to spend the night with Andy Grignon, Robert and Mariam Scoble, and Sam Levin. I met even more awesome people including winemaker Sarah Francis and Master Sommelier Ian Cauble. It was nice to have some of my SxSw crew back together for a couple nights.
I had the privilege of hanging out with Lizz Porter with Life360 in San Francisco. I love being a Brand Ambassador for Life360 and think Lizz is quite awesome! A fellow blogger and lover of life – can’t beat that!
On my last day in San Francisco, I needed to get a couple things and say goodbye to some friends. I parked at the 5th & Mission Garage and when I came back to my car my stomach dropped when I saw my window had been shattered and my backpack taken. Since I was packed to leave, I had just put every piece of tech into that backpack including my laptop, which is what I use to make a living out here on the road. I lost $6k worth of tech from my laptop to my cameras to every battery backup I had.
Insurance gave me a check for $250 and said sorry, you should have home owner’s insurance. Umm, I don’t have a home. This was my home. What is even worse is I thought my manuscript for Unstoppable: Girl On The Road was backed up on my external hard drive. It wasn’t. I lost the book I had spent the last few months writing. Gone. Like I had never typed a word. Completely gone. I cried for two full weeks over it. I still have moments of panic. I don’t make enough as a travel blogger to replace the contents of that bag or to take time off from clients right now to rewrite my book. I was devastated.
I luckily have some really great friends and family. My brother bought me a new North Face backpack and had that sent to me. I had another friend in Silicon Valley who said he would lend me a MacBook Air. Being a Microsoft and Android girl, I had no idea how to even turn the thing on. This picture was the first time I had smiled since the break-in. I was in a world of mental hurt and wasn’t really certain how to crawl out of it. I wasn’t certain I was going to finish this journey to Alaska.
With the break-in happening I had to detour my plans to leave as I had to try and figure out how to replace some of the gear. I would have to be back in SF the next week to regroup. I had plans that weekend to go to Boonville, a huge craft-beer festival for brewers. That festival is another post all on its own, but here are a couple pics. That Saturday morning when I woke up in my tent, I cried for over an hour as the camp came alive. I realized though that I had a job to do and I needed to put on my big girl panties and get to it.
I met a lot of gifted brewmasters that weekend, many I would go on to see in the weeks to come to interview for AdventuresInBrew.com. I hadn’t realized how many beers these days were being part of barrel-aged programs. I was pleasantly surprised when I met Jake Robertson who runs the barrel program at Crispin Cider. Not only did they let me taste their ciders, but also their barrel-aged ones that were held back from the public. I met many awesome people that weekend, and Jake was one of them. And yes, it seems having a long beard is a prerequisite to being a brewmaster.
When I came back from Boonville I learned that GoPro was going to replace my stolen GoPro Hero 3. I was happy to hear that I would have a camera for my trip to Alaska! I want to wear my GoPro as I hike to show everyone the beauty that is the Alaskan wilderness. Thank you Chris Greene and GoPro for supporting me!
I was very surprised with Microsoft reached out to give me a Surface 2 to help me recover. I was speechless. And yes, I cried at their generosity. I have worked with Microsoft products for over 20 years and was blown away by this gift. Thank you Microsoft for showing me even more how awesome your brand and the people you have working for you are.
I can’t say enough good things about my friend John Boitnott. He has always welcomed me into his home each time I have traveled through San Francisco. I know this time was a bit more stressful as he was in the process of a big move. John has a great heart and very happy to call him a close friend.
I left my heart in San Francisco and my tech. But what I received in return is hard to put a price tag on. Each day as I struggled to continue on this trip, I had friends and family lift me up when I couldn’t stand on my own. To me, it felt like this break-in ruined my life. Then I remembered, it is just things. Things can be replaced. I can rewrite my book, I can rebuild. It will not be easy, but what other choice do I have?
As for my heart… that’s a story I am not ready to share.
Disclosure: I received the Microsoft Surface and the GoPro Hero 3 as gifts, and the MacBook Air from a friend. I do not have to review them nor post about them in any way unless I decide to do that on my own free will. Links within this post may contain affiliate links that I earn commissions from. Example, if you click on the above GoPro link and purchase anything from that site (Amazon) I make a small commission, no matter what you purchase. This is how I pay for my travels and this blog. Thank you for supporting me!
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