San Jose is a pleasant town in the San Francisco Bay Area. It bills itself as the capital of Silicon Valley, and indeed, Amazon, eBay, Cisco, PayPal, Google, Adobe, Facebook and many others have their bases here or nearby.
The downtown area is quite small, but the city spreads quite far around the core. My hosts – my nephew, Éamon, and his wife, Pamela – live with their three children in a leafy neighbourhood called Evergreen Valley.
And very good hosts they are too! They ferried me to and from the train station several times, took me around some of the sights downtown – Santa Clara mission, the Winchester Mystery House – and drove me to the beach at Santa Cruz to fulfil my my ambition to get my arse wet in the Pacific for the first time. But they also made the ultimate sacrifice: instead of giving me the expected mattress in the baby's room, the they bunked in with their youngest and gave me their own room. No greater love hath nephew than to give up his bed for his uncle!
I strongly recommend Maguire's B&B in San Jose!
Tomorrow, Sunday, I take the train from San Francisco to Chicago. Originally, the idea was to leave SF on Tuesday but I had a change of plan. Unfortunately, when I changed the date of my train I didn't take into consideration Sunday schedules on the connecting trains from San Jose. The only option was a bus at 4.20am, which would get me to the main stain three hours before departure time.
So, tonight (Saturday) I'm staying in Berkeley, a ten-minute walk from Emeryville station, the departure point of the California Zephyr.
I don't believe there is WiFi on the train, so the next post will be published when I arrive in Chicago on Tuesday.