Pritam Rohila Travels

Reports of my travels along with some pictures

Feb 17, 2017


 (All pictures except those pertaining to our family were borrowed via the internet)

On February 11, 2017, our granddaughter Sonam‘s boyfriend surprised her with a proposal, at the Palace of Fine Arts (3301 Lyon St.), in San Francisco. My wife, Kundan, and I, along with both sets of parents and other close relatives were there to bless them.

Palace of Fine Arts, San Francisco, CA

To assist them, Sonam’s parents had set up a small table, in the narrow strip of green grass and bushes that fringes the eastern bank of the monument’s lagoon. The table had been adorned with a bouquet of flowers, a bottle of champagne and the couple’s framed picture. Also a decorative runner that led up to the table had been laid out.

Dharmil proposes to Sonam

The Happy Couple




Located in the heart of San Francisco’s Marina District, the Palace of Fine Arts is a magnificent, stately building. Because of its several tall Corinthian columns, this neo-classical edifice reminds one of the classical Roman and Greek monuments.

Area Map

Palace of Fine Arts, San Francisco, CA

It was originally erected in 1915, for the Panama-Pacific exposition. But it was eventually torn down and rebuilt in 1965. The monument’s small, artificial lagoon is inhabited by a variety of waterfowls. A few Australian eucalyptus trees stand by the lagoon. 

The monument’s small, artificial lagoon is inhabited by a variety of waterfowls. A few Australian eucalyptus trees stand by the lagoon

Lagoon at the Palace of Fine Arts, San Francisco, CA

The site is a popular attraction for tourists, a favorite picnic-spot for the locals, and a beautiful meeting place for romantic couples. Also with its lagoon, the building makes a good backdrop for everyone’s photographs. 

The Palace is close to the Presidio and the Golden Gate Bridge and easily accessible by car as well as by public transportation.


Golden Gate Bridge cGolden Gate Bridge

I have been to San Francisco a few times before. Several years ago, I visited here to join a group of protesters outside the Indian Consulate. Later that evening I enjoyed poetic presentations by a few local Urdu language poets. A few other times I came here to view special exhibits at the Asian Arts Museum. 

Asian Art Museum, San Francisco, CA

Asian Art Museum, San Francisco, CA

Also I have visited its Chinatown as well as…..

Chinatown, San Francisco, CA

Chinatown, San Francisco, CA

the Fisherman’s wharf.

Fisherman’s Wharf, San Francisco, CA

Fisherman’s Wharf, San Francisco, CA

But this time it was different. As I was not driving myself, I could take in the sights along the way.

Going up and down the steep streets reminded me of a few roller-coaster rides I had experienced years ago, but without any nausea. 

Steep streets of San Francisco
Steep streets of San Francisco

Upon the return trip later in the day, streets had come alive.

Chestnut Street, which is lined with shops, restaurants, and coffee houses, was bustling with people.  Some people were just wandering around. Others were shopping at boutiques and supermarkets. Many were enjoying drinks and meals at tables, which had been set up on sidewalks by the area restaurants.

Chestnut Street, San Francisco, CA

Chestnut Street, San Francisco, CA

At places, lighted windows of multistory buildings reminded me of paintings of nocturnal urban scenes.

Buildings at night, San Francisco, CA
Buildings at night, San Francisco, CA

San Francisco is the cultural, commercial, and financial capital of Northern California It is also the second most densely populated U.S. city after New York.  

San Francisco Bay area map

Surrounded by the Pacific Ocean and the San Francisco Bay, San Francisco is a beautiful, fascinating city, anytime of the day, and anytime of the year. No wonder that it is called “The Paris of the West.”

Climate in San Francisco fluctuates. It can rain even in the middle of summer. But some of the city's warmest temperatures happen to be between September and November. Spring is usually mild and dry.  And winter is quite chilly.

San Francisco Bay Area Weather Map on Feb 16, 2017

Currently weather here is cool and wet. Highs have been ranging between low 60’s and high 50’s, and lows between low 50’s and high 40’s. In the next few days, we plan to return to our home in northwestern Oregon, where weather is about the same.

Until our trip back home, we are enjoying our visit to the fascinating San Francisco area.

Nov 12, 2016


On October 20, 2016, our son Snehal and his wife Bhavna drove Kundan and me, for an overnight trip to Seaside, Oregon.

Snehal & Bhavna

Going along the U.S. Highway 26 West, we encountered many trees that had put on their yellow, reddish autumn garb.

Trees along Highway 26 West

Trees along Highway 26 West

About 27 miles from Portland, we passed through a tunnel. It took us across the Northern Oregon Coast Range of mountains. The 772 feet tunnel was completed in 1940.


We drove by an unincorporated community. It had Sip Stop marijuana dispensary.

In the United States, Oregon was the first state to decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana. Non-medical cultivation of and uses of marijuana was legalized in Oregon, in 2014. And next year, sale of marijuana to adult recreational users from authorized dispensaries was legalized.

Green Cross: Marijuana Dispensary Sign

Sip Stop Marijuana Dispensary

We reached Seaside late in the afternoon. 

According to Wikipedia, the name Seaside is derived from Seaside House, a summer resort, which had been built in the 1870’s by a railroad magnate.

Located about 85 miles from Portland, Seaside is a popular ocean-side town of about 6,500 people. It is spread out on both sides along US Highway 101.  

Businesses located along US Highway 101

Businesses located along US Highway 101

Thanks to my brother-in-law Rohit, and his wife Rita, at Seaside, we stayed at Worldmark by Windham resort by the sea.

Worldmark by Wyndham Resort, Seaside, OR

At the resort, we had a two bedroom condo. It was equipped with all the usual amenities, including washer, dryer, full kitchen and even spices!

Floor Plan of Two-bedroom Units at Worldmark by Wyndham, Resort

The resort is located at the Turnaround at the western end of Broadway Street. There is the 1.5-mile promenade by the Turnaround,

Turnaround on Broadway Street, Seaside, OR

Some people believe that the Turnaround marks the end of the historic Lewis and Clark trail.

Meriwether Lewis and William Clark had embarked on their expedition from St. Louis, Missouri, in May 1804. A steel arch at St. Louis memorializes them as well as others who had helped westward expansion of the United States.

Gateway Arch, St. Louis, Missouri

  1. William Clark & Meriwether Lewis

Lewis & Clark trek westward

At the center of the Turnaround is a bronze statue of Lewis and Clark. The statue was created by Stanley Wanlass and erected in 1990.

Lewis & Clark Statue 

Lewis & Clark Statue 

On the statue, their Newfoundland Labrador dog, named Seaman, is shown sitting at the feet of Lewis and Clark. The dog is depicted holding a salmon, which it might have fished from the ocean.

Lewis & Clarks' Dog Seaman holding a aalmon

The base of the statue depicts scenes from the trek of Lewis & Clark, along with other motifs.

A scene on the base of the statue

A scene on the base of the statue

A scene on the base of the statue

A scene on the base of the statue

Yards and yards of the wide, sandy beach leads up to the Pacific Ocean. The popular beach is frequented by out-of-towners as well as locals.

People at the beach

We had dinner at Mazatlan Mexican Restaurant.

Mazatlan Mexican Restaurant, Seaside, OR

Back at our condo, we spent some time playing Rummikub. This table game is similar to the card game Rummy, except that it is played with tiles.


Next day we shopped at the local Nike store.

Nike store,, Seaside, OR

Then we went for lunch at Angelina's Pizzeria and Cafe'. It is located on US Highway 101.

After lunch, we headed back home. All in all, it was an enjoyable trip.