My 17 Miles Walking Trip

I didn’t do sport for a really long time since I move to San Francisco. I gained weight couple of kilograms, gained enough to gives my cheeks an extra massive volume. In my first attempt, accidentally went to Fisherman Wharf by running through Chinatown which is a really bad track to run. I didn’t know Chinatown was super crowded, plus it has a market along the street on the sidewalk. It was really Asian, I didn’t even remember that I was in San Francisco by walking through this neighborhood.

Weekday is really crowded of errands for me. I get up every morning and need to be in office before 9am. Morning in San Francisco is really chilly. It sometimes makes me stick to my lovely bed when I found myself get the light that coming through the window is not sunny enough. It is always foggy in San Francisco in almost every day that I had. The 12-degree celsius temperature always success made my self pull back the blanket. I almost always showing up late at the office in the last couple of days. I’m having a crunch time working on my project until a really late night. I normally get off from office after 5 pm every day and still have to face my 15-inch screen when I’m home. By sitting on the chair for really long hours and starring on screen even until I’m laying off on bed preparing for sleep, I’m done and my body is bored.

I start my first ever running in San Francisco by started it from my apartment which is 2 blocks west of Union Square, headed to north through super crowded Chinatown, Columbus avenue, Lombard street and stopped in Fisherman Wharf. I plan this run mission when I was in my first week in San Francisco but I never make it. My goal is solid, I want to finish this mission by reaching the highest hill in Sausalito so I can get a really nice view right to San Francisco skyline and the bridge in one frame. Until I didn’t realize my phone dead after a couple of minutes I ran. I get lost in the middle of San Francisco city just because I really depend on maps on my phone. I kept walking to the north by assuming I can found north beach on me. After few blocks I found my self ended up in Girardheli Square. “Oh god, you saved me”.

“Number 8 please”, An In N Out crew calling me out from the table asking me to pick up my order. It was an opposite way to lose weight. I ate 220 calories of meals after ran for 45 minutes, burned 168 calories, and get lost with an out of juice phone. What a best example of a burning calories activity! I went to this Fisherman Wharf couple of times before so I know what cable car line shall I take to get my ass back to my apartment and abandon this mission.

It was 2 and half on my watch, I don’t even complete a 50% progress by reaching Fisherman Wharf and now I’m going back to the start point, I move 0 of miles. My phone didn’t even charged enough to get me reach the bridge and get back again to home today. I still really relying on Apple Maps for getting know what bus should I take from one point to another in this foggy city. I don’t want to let my self lost anymore. That was my best lost experience ever and I’m good to not going out without a full of battery of phone. I have a lot shits to do instead of getting lost in the middle of blocks.

The impulsive side of me took the decision. I grab my 1 kilogram 27000 power bank by back to the apartment to run with me after starring on my screen scrolling up my Instagram feed. It was kind of a weird run when you hold a really not portable power source with you while you run. I can’t put them on my pocket so I was hold it with along running. To be honest it is a really big power bank, I normally put it in my backpack while I’m charging my phone.

I stopped in couple of sites. Two of them is National Cemetery of US and The Walt Disney Family Museum. I didn’t even know that Walt Disney was living in San Francisco in some part of his life. It was really cool inside, couple of furnitures that Walt used when he was living near Presidio area is still there. I’m not a really in to Disney. I’m more to a Pixar person, but this $15 museum trip was a great visit that makes me become really believe that behind the big success there is a one big struggle that people can not see in the process. Walt was not born in a rich Family. He grew up in a agrarian family that doesn’t support little Walt to do art. He was selling drawing to his neighbor to make extra money when young Walt try to afford school. Walt makes me realize in one moment that nobody live without struggle and obstacle. It’s always okay to be failed and you keep doing it as an idiot but once you quit there is a different thing of a failure. Then my museum walk stopped on a big white wall with a quote of uncle Walt

“All the adversity I’ve had in my life, all my troubles and obstacles, have strengthened me. You may not realize it when it happens, but a kick in the teeth may be the best thing in the world for you”

I took a long deep breath.

The Golden Gate Bridge view was showing up in one of the window in the museum as a call that I need to leave before the day get too cold to be on the peak. I almost ended my trip by visiting the museum because it looks like a really long bridge and it is literally a really long bridge. The cold pacific ocean wind hit my skin in a super cold way few second before I cross the bridge. It was 12 deg celsius and I just wearing a short pants and a t-shirt under my hoodie jacket. I just felt like I need more layers with me at that time. The wind in the middle of bridge become so lit than I predicted makes it felt like 5 deg. I ran faster to makes my self keep warm up.

I reached the other side of the bridge after being frozen by the breezy wind. It was shorter than as I predicted before I crossed. But I felt a lot of pain on my feet inside my shoes. I can not walk normally after that. The view of San Francisco skyline that I can see from the bridge made me really enjoying the run and forget how long the bridge that I’ve crossed and how. It’s really beautiful. I kept trying to walk to the hill until I stopped and get my shoes off because it was getting much worse. Then I saw some blisters on some spots. some of them have a little bleed. By how far that I was at that time I think I can’t just abandon my goal to reach the peak. More than that, I was almost there.

I kept walking to the peak with these blisters which I know getting much and much horrible. Then I take a real run to hike the hill without a stop because I know, I will feel the pain when I stopped. Then I stopped 20 minutes after I start hiked up for the all of the pain that I accumulate and for the view I just had. It was at 8pm when I reached the Sausalito. The sun almost touched the pacific surface on my right side of view. By all of I got on peak It makes me forget the process that I took by running 17 miles before reach that. It was fascinating. To be honest the longest marathon that I’ve ever had in my life is just a 3 miles. That’s not even long enough to call a marathon. I can stay longer if I want to see sunset from that point but the wind up there is super heavy and cold.

This peak called Bettery Spencer, this area was used in World War I and II by US army to defending Bay Area from attack of enemy troops. The location is super strategic by being a point where we can watch the pacific ocean and San Francisco bay area in one view. I still can see some barrack and old building from World War in the area while I was hiking up to the peak.

Then suddenly at this moment, it recalls me when Steve Jobs had a speech in Stanford in 2005,

“If I had never dropped out, I would have never dropped in on this calligraphy class, and personal computers might not have the wonderful typography that they do. Of course it was impossible to connect the dots looking forward when I was in college. But it was very, very clear looking backward 10 years later.

Again, you can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backward. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something — your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.”

The thing I want to share is not my shitty 17 miles run (which I should not proud for)  but what is behind that I really want to tell you. The process often makes us confuse and we always wondering what will happen next. We will never know when we just need to go back after you draining of power. It might be not bring you moving anywhere but at least you go back to bring up what you really need to makes you move further and take you into your real direction. I will never know that moving 0 miles by doing a lot of effort was part of the process should I took. But as what Steve said, “You have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future” and at that time all of your question about why this and why that will be answered by your self. That’s how I never regret on my fails

San Francisco Skyline and The Golden Gate bridge from Battery Spencer.