My first 18 hours from LA TO SF from Friday to Saturday were the most traumatizing and exhausting hours of traveling in my life. And my trip overall was filled some of the biggest lows and highs. LA’s insane storm on Friday was so awful that the Uber surge pushed my ride from downtown LA to LAX airport to $85 (almost as much as my flight) Then after arriving the airport, my flight time was delayed 10 times, with 4 gate changes across the airport. I was too afraid of falling asleep, moving around, and my phone dying. I was initially scheduled to depart at 9:30 PM, then eventually scheduled to 2:51 A.M. But thankfully an engineer fixed one of the planes to set up a new flight and I made the list of passengers to take that 1:30 AM flight.

By the time I got to SFO at about 3 AM, my friend who I planned to stay with… fell asleep, so I was left wandering around lost and completely drained at 4:30 AM. Thank God- My friend’s boyfriend picked up her phone, called me back and ran out to save me and bring me in. I was so traumatized from my night that I was shaking and couldn’t sleep more than 3 minutes. I thought things would get better after having coffee and breakfast with our solid group, but while we were eating, my friend got his parked car windows slashed, battery died, and we were waiting for over an hour for cops and AAA to help.

I forgot my dress for a wedding in my friend’s closet..and by then I regretted my itinerary. But Andrew picked us up and dropped us off at the nearest BART station so we could make it to the Palace of Fine Arts, really a stunning architectural masterpiece… and thus allowed us to walk over to check out the nearby Wave Organs (these man made PVC pipes that create different sounds of splashes and splashes when the waves hits these instruments)…. really soothing.

On Sunday, after a heavenly 8.5 hours of sleep with Nyquil, I reserved a popup lunch in Russan Hill for Andrew and me and he drove us for Feastly, which includes rotating featured chefs with temporary menus for you to RSVP for. I’d never heard of it, but Feastly’s popup meals extends throughout several states including San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, Portland, Chicago, and Washington D.C. This lunch really lightened my terrifying Friday because I had the chance to meet and talk with the chef, Andrew, photographer, and manager, Monica. Surprisingly, their space doesn’t include vents… can you imagine how hard it must be to cook without a vent…?

The main reason why I came was to attend my Gamble House roommate, Cece’s wedding. She’d tell me at USC that her family only allowed her to marry a guy in the same tribe as her from Nigeria…. and she met him in NYC. Cece is truly, one of the smartest and talented individuals/architects I know – she won so many scholarships that the school asked her to stop applying because she hogged too many… I feel pretty lame next to her.

Anyway, as for the wedding- it was engaging and really cultural to see all her tribal rituals carried out after the ceremony. The ceremony lasted about 30 minutes and ended by 5/5:30. but the ceremony after lasted until at least 11 when I realized…crap, I have to get up at 4 A.M. to catch my flight because yes, I had to work on Memorial Day. Anyway, it feels good to be back in so-cal. Until next time, peace SF!


After wrapping up a Revit presentation of our current mid-rise SF project, I flew up to San Francisco and reunited with one of my best friends from Architecture school. A.L sat next to me on our first day of studio, and although our friendship has extended to this brutal LDF, I’m incredibly thankful to have designers/friends like him in my circle. My last trip to San Francisco was just this past December, but I booked this flight to SF for the purposes to have another getaway from Los Angeles and to reunite with some solid friends while I check out new cafes/potential upcoming collaborative projects. My schedule was slammed back to back and the lack of sleep from the previous week + heat tormented my skin and flared up my eczema. But, thank you so much A.L. for driving me to every destination for me to reunite with architecture colleagues + Japanese friends from Tokyo and Osaka, waiting in lines for me, keeping me cool, and for taking such wonderful care of me. San Francisco was again, so stellar.

1. Song Tea and Ceramics

2120 Sutter St
San Francisco, CA 94115

I found this tea shop with A.L the last time I swung by San Francisco. This time, I didn’t get the chance to see Peter Luong, founder of Song Tea and Ceramics, but I happily picked up some Snow Jasmine tea to bring back to LA.

2. The Elite cafe

2049 Fillmore St
San Francisco, CA 94115

While my eczema was completely tearing my skin apart, A.L found me some shade and a place for us to settle down in a cooler area. It’s been too long since I’ve had southern comfort food, and just one of these buttery biscuits fulfilled every longing.

3. The Mill

736 Divisadero St
San Francisco, CA 94117

The Mill is also a great resting / afternoon spot, with sweet stacks of fresh loaves of bread (coming straight out of the open oven), a selection of Dandelion chocolates and pastries that go perfectly well with your coffee and sketchbook.

4. Tartine Manufactory

595 Alabama St
San Francisco, CA 94110

Tartine Manufactory is this up and coming San Francisco cafe that combines a bakery + restaurant + bar + ice cream parlor + coffee shop into one heavenly space at the corner next to Blue Bottle. I was initially invited to join brunch with my Japanese girlfriends at Bar Tartine, but because of my misreading and clash in dates/schedules, and a friend working in Tartine Manufactory, A.L and I decided to scrap the Bar Tartine brunch idea and instead swing over here for brunch. Although the line is a drag and the circulation – a mess (a bit of a clusterfuck especially on Saturday mornings that mislead customers with a bad sense of direction), the tables were great and the food? … fantastic.

A.L. and I settled on the porchetta sandwich (a stack of assorted meats and vegetables covered in a buttery bun) with a liege waffle. (A.L opted for the house coffee while I chugged my drip of Blue Bottle)

5. SF MOMA (extension design by Snohetta)

151 3rd St
San Francisco, CA 94103

Right after Tartine Manufactory, we quickly drifted to SF MOMA to check out the extension/renovation by Snohetta. Thanks Anish for the SF MOMA tickets + A.L. for capturing the candid portrait of me.

6. Samovar Tea Lounge

Yerba Buena Gardens
730 Howard St
San Francisco, CA 94103

I came here to reunite with another tea enthusiast blogger who I met in Tokyo. This duck jook was so damn tasty and the bottomless pu-reh teas really calmed me down after a restless weekend. I’m really excited to see what upcoming projects both Steph + I can steep up in the near future.