Friday, September 14, 2007

Final Day in SF

It's Thursday and the VMworld conference is over. Very enjoyable -- if you like that sort of thing. Kevin had booked a rental car for the next leg of our trip with a 6pm pick up, so at 5.30 we set out to walk to the Hertz office to collect it. We arrived at 6.01 to discover that they close at 6pm on the dot. The staff were coming out of the office and refused to let us in to collect the car. After some remonstrating and pleading with them we realised that we weren't going to get anywhere, so we went around the corner and a couple of blocks along to Avis in hopes of picking up a car on spec, knowing that if this didn't work out we could still go back to Hertz on Friday morning. Annoying but still do-able.

Luckily enough Avis are open til 7pm and the very helpful lady behind the counter was pleased to provide us with the same type of vehicle. BP had planned to drive out of the city to visit some friends, so he took the wheel and we pulled out of the garage and turned right into the street, only to narrowly avoid a collision with a BMW and a very embarrassing incident: crashing one of Avis's cars right outside their showroom. Panic over, and BP dropped Kevin and me in Chinatown and went on his merry way.

Kevin and I wandered through Chinatown and found a(nother) camera shop, this one offering 50 - 70% off all lenses. Just for a laugh we went in and enquired about the price of the Nikon 70-300 zoom: the lens BP bought from Kenny on Monday for $215 (discounted from $299). This guy's price was $199, but when I said I was asking on behalf of a friend he said, "Tell your friend he can have it for $169." We still haven't decided whether to tell BP or not!

We had a very fine chinese meal at the Imperial Palace restaurant in Chinatown, but that was three hours ago and now I want another one.

Tomorrow sees the start of the second leg of our U.S. trip: the Road Trip. We have a team meeting at Novell's Provo Headquarters next Monday & Tuesday, and rather than bum around for three days and then fly to Utah we have decided to drive.

Our 981 mile trip starts tomorrow morning at 8am. We will head East out of SF and drive to Yosemite National Park (camera gear at the ready). We'll spend the day in the park and then spend the night at a nearby hotel. Then on Saturday we drive around 400 miles across the Nevada Desert into southern Utah, past the notorious "Area 51" military testing site and rumoured location of captured alien spacecraft. I'll post pictures of some flying saucers here if you (and I for that matter) are very lucky. In reality I don't expect we'll get anywhere near it. Then on Sunday we visit Zion National Park in soutern Utah before driving the final leg to Provo, when it'll be back to work.

Our route. We must be mad!

I don't know if I'll get an internet connection until we hit Provo, so there may or may not be updates for the next three days. You can count on a story, and pictures, by early next week though.

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