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Let's Fly to Google I/O Pt. 2 - Stick the Landing

bennypowers profile image Benny Powers 🇮🇱🇨🇦 ・3 min read

Having landed safe and sound at SFO, it's time to get acclimatized and prepare for tomorrow's excitement.

Part Two: Stick the Landing

On the plane ride over to San Francisco, I met an Israeli delegation from Wix (try their product!), some of whom were also first timers. Our plan arrived early, and as a reward, we had to wait on the tarmac because they couldn't open the doors until passport control opened, So we got to know each other a little. At passport control, I really got to appreciate how privileged I am to carry a Canadian passport. Many of the other passengers on my flight had to have various body parts catalogued by border officers, but I didn't.

My new friends from Wix offered for me to tag along in the Uber to the venue (thanks, Tom, Lital, Yedidyah, Adam, and Guy), So I went with them to register early.
We shuffled around the airport for a few minutes until we found the creatively-named "Ride App Pickup". There, not two minutes out of the door, a local news station interviewed me about the driver's strike on Wednesday. Not even three hours in the States and I got myself on TV 😅... This is going to go well.

Traffic on the way to the venue was a mess, I hope it will be better tomorrow (prediction: it won't). Thankfully, registration was fairly painless, and we were quickly in another Uber on our way to the city.

Forgot to Wear Flowers in my Hair

San Francisco is a beautiful city. There were parts of the city that reminded me of downtown Toronto and others that reminded me of, oddly, downtown Winnipeg. I got off at my old friend's place downtown and we went out for a cup of fancy coffee from a place called "Philz" (which, I'm told, secured several rounds of VC funds... 🤷‍♂️) and a walk along the exceedingly picturesque Embarcadero.

I'm really disappointed that I can't visit the new train station downtown. I've read a little about it and it seems (seemed?) like an important project. Apparently there were some serious engineering problems, so it's closed to visitors pending expensive, extensive renovations.

I'm also more than a little underwhelmed to discover that the world famous Silicon Valley is actually a collection of suburban office parks. I dunno, I guess something inside of me was expecting something a little more forward thinking? I'll work on checking that bias over the next few days, though.

Eppes Essen

Turns out there are more kosher restaurants in San Fran than I anticipated. Neat-o! My gracious host went out of his way to procure plenty of kosher food for me to eat, too. What a guy! And, at the high end grocer we wandered into downtown, they had kosher-certified plaintain chips - my fav!

Since I didn't sleep on the long flight over, my energy is dwindling fast. But I'm here to stretch myself a little bit not just to be my usual lazy-bones homebody self, so I'm off to go wander around Chinatown. Wish me luck!

Random Notes

  • I'm finally seeing more #webcomponents developers tweeting about the event.
  • There was literally a Google I/O challah cover in the swag bag.
  • On the drive from Mountain View to San Fran, you will see billboards for (in order) - Task Management SaaS, some company's REST API, and high-class weed delivered to your door.

Thanks for reading, and hey if you're at #io19 and want to meet up, drop me a line here, on Twitter, or in the Polymer Community or WeAllJS Slack.

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