It’s been awhile since I posted a blog, so I thought I’d share a short summary of trip I took to San Francisco earlier this month. I accompanied my daughter on her all-expense paid trip, sponsored by the Keds/BraveLife Foundation. She was chosen by this foundation based upon an essay she submitted about her dreams and aspirations of becoming an animator. The foundation will be filming a mini-documentary of her doing a one-day mentorship with Maya (last name), an animator and illustrator employed by LucasFilms.
Day 1 – San Francisco Trip – 3:00 am
Our trip started out by leaving the house at 3am to catch our respective flights on Delta Airlines out of BWI. It wasn’t her first time flying but was her first time flying without any family and having to make her connecting flights, as well as arriving in San Fran two hours earlier than me.
8L03 am: With one carry on each, she seemed to pack a little lighter than me, but I’m carrying more reading material than her (insert pics)
Caught a little nap shortly after we took off but it already seems we’re preparing for descent to the ATL with a layover of 90 mins. My daughter should be wheels up out of Detroit.
9:08 sm: At the gate for the connecting flight to SFO…already dreading a possible two days out of the gym. Here’s hoping the hotel has a workout facility. This just in: “Hey Dad, dunno if your flight left yet, but I’m still here in Detroit, I’m on the plane but I guess their waiting for something, so we may come in close to the same time”. Turns out it was an hour delay in the ground.
She gets to SFO at 11am and me an hour later. Now, waiting for our rep to meet us and have lunch.
1:34pm – Taking our first Uber drive to the hotel. So much for the shuttle.
2:15pm – Lunch at Sweet Woodruffs. Excellent good, quaint corner restaurant that allowed us a view of some guy with a mohawk and his female friend involved in an argument and beatdown with some other woman. A citizen was crossing the street and whipped out his phone to catch all of this on video. Next thing we know, three police cars and an SUV were on the scene. Even the SF Fire Dept. showed up (the fire department ??)
3:15 pm. Back to the hotel, the semi-swank Kensington Hotel, for a break before my daughter when to be filmed talking about this mentorship, etc with the Golden Gate Bridge in the background. Me? I chilled #jetlag
7:45pm. We venture out for dinner, initially heading to explore Chinatown but got confused via what Google Maps was telling us. Some more nearby exploring in Union Square brought us to a nearby. Cheesecake Factoey, in which we found that we probably wouldn’t be taking te first bites of our meal until 10pm. Our final eat stop: Jack In The Box lol. We eventually walked to the tip of Chinatown then back to the hotel. Our room is $300/night (penthouse is $400), nice amenities but I no gym, which I won’t see until Thursday…grrrr!
6:00am – Four alarm clocks go off so we’re not late for a 7:45am meet at the front desk. My daughter, not knowing how to turn off te fancy iHOme alarm, proceeds to hit me in te head with a pillow so I can turn it off.
8:00am – We depart the fabulous Kensington Park Hotel (with no workout facility) and pack into van with the film crew and company reps and head through downtown San Fran towards LucasFilms.
9:00am – We arrive at the campus of LucasFilms and meet our host for the day, Allison. The lobby area is pretty much all Star Wars regalia. As the film crew follows, we get our badges and proceed to the conference room on the second floor for breakfast and a small briefing as to what happens next. After snapping many pics and shooting video shorts, I’m kindly told that nothing recorded above the second floor is to be posted on social media
10:00am – The film crew is all set up and ready to start recording Danielle and Maia’s face-to-face which, in the end, went smashing! Maia let me know she really enjoyed talking with Danielle and that they shared a lot in common. Afterwords. Allison gave us a mini-your of the campus and the film crew shot more footage of Danielle around campus.
1230pm: We depart LucasFilm as head back to the hotel area where even more B-footage is shot of Danielle walking downtown, boarding a streetcar, etc.
2:30pm We head uptown to The Fly Restaurant for a great lunch, shooting the breeze with the film crew as company rep, wrapping up with a recap of all the great activities of this trip. I highly recommend this restaurant if you ever visit, the food is phenomenal.
530pm: We say goodbye to all, hop in an Uber car to the airport, with plenty of time to spare. Ironically, both our flights suffered massive delays to the point where we coincidentally ended up on the same red-eye non-stop headed back home.
11:19pm – Wheels up, Danielle is sitting next to me half asleep. I have a feeling I won’t be too far behind her. Thanks for reading.