Big boats and bowling

This Saturday, Dave and and I encountered two highly contrasting events.  One featuring international luxury and opulence.  Another featuring used and rented footwear.

As previously mentioned, the San Francisco Bay has been gearing up for America’s Cup 2013 events.  We finally walked over to the America’s Cup Village on the Embarcadero to check out what was available for fans.

Even though there wasn’t a race on Saturday, there was quite a bit to see and do.

Ever since we moved here in September, there have been huge construction walls around the area.  But now, there is a sprawling entertainment village with bright red, white and blue banners announcing “America’s Cup 2013” and plenty of interactive exhibits.  There is also an amphitheater and stage for concerts, green sitting areas with large flat-screen TV displays to watch the races, themed lounges (one with incredibly gorgeous girly furniture) and a Louis Vuitton store.

Perhaps the best part of visiting the America’s Cup Village, was not in fact the village itself, but the huge yachts and sailboats parked at the marina.  There were passengers on the boat decks enjoying gourmet meals in the sunshine.  They went about their business as though crowds of people weren’t walking by with jaws dropped (ours included).  When I saw someone get hand delivered chopsticks and champagne from a “yachtie”, I knew I was on the wrong side of the deck.

The interactive exhibits were very cool.  Although most of the event space is considered temporary through the term of the races, the America’s Cup spared no expense at creating fine displays.  Within the “Flying on Water” building, you could put your hand in a wind tunnel, attempt to steer a mega-yacht on a big screen and learn the history of the America’s Cup.

Tons of families, tourists and even fancy people decked out in America’s Cup attire were all enjoying the free activities.  With that much activity on a non-race day, I’m sure it is hopping when there is actually something going on.

From ritzy digs to keeping it real, later that day Dave and I joined our friends for some casual bowling at the Presidio Bowling Center.  The Presidio neighborhood is nearly on the opposite side of town from where we live (four whole miles away), so we hadn’t been there before.  It was quiet, much less crowded and way less urban.  Nice change of pace, for our low-key night of bowling.

I won the first game of bowling, shocking the group.  But as usual, I got more into talking and less into bowling during the second game and totally lost my edge.

Maybe I am more suited to lounging on yachts than wearing rented shoes.

Louis Vuitton Cup
Windy spot for a photo in front of the Bay.
America's Cup Village
Ping-pong tables and bean bags for fans at the America’s Cup Village.
America's Cup Village
Just one of the fabulous boats parked at the Village.
Presidio Bowling Center
Dave making the “spare” sign at the Presidio Bowling Center.
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