After a long day spent at the Visual Studio and SQL Server launch at Moscone West, I had a screaming headache. It was overcast all day in San Francisco, and as I walked back to the St. Francis it was starting to drizzle. I felt like curling up in bed, but it was my only free night in the city so I wanted to get dinner at Brandy Ho's.
No one was willing to go to dinner with me (something about a deodorant malfunction), so I went by myself. It was pissing rain, and I had a foolish plan to eat and then walk up to Coit Tower to take some photos. I packed my fabulous travel tripod and my good lens in my TechEd 03 backpack, and grabbed a cab in the pissing rain to the restaurant.
I sat down at my sad little table by myself, and ordered my favorites - the dumplings with sweet and sour sauce, and the beef with green onions and wine sauce. A few minutes after I got there, a family sat down at the next table. They looked a bit touristy. I got my dumplings, did the best I could with them, and then the waitress came by to ask if I was finished. I told her that I was still working on them.
As I spoke, the woman at the next table turned to me, stared at me for a minute like she was about to say something, and said "JOSH??" After a split second pause to put her face back in context, I fainted.
Well, not quite. But through some weird flow of time and space, I was sitting next to Denise Putnam, who had been the admin for the magazines in the early 1990s. They live in New Jersey, but were in SF because the Giants had played the Niners on Sunday. They go on a road trip every year.
This was the second time this has happened to me. The first was when I felt a tap on my shoulder when I was sitting on a plane. My uncle was sitting behind me, traveling back to his home in St. Louis.
Anyway, we had a lovely visit, and then I took them up to Coit Tower in their car! I didn't have to make the dumb-ass walk after all, they were excited to get to a location they hadn't known about, and as the rain abated I got some dramatic photos from the top of Telegraph Hill. (OK, some of them were from back down in Union Square afterwards.)