To celebrate my blatant unemployment, I spent all of yesterday in Silicon Valley. After dropping the Boyfriend off at work, I took his car and visited my friend D at Google, where we had lunch at Beta Café. I had never visited Google before, and the Boyfriend had commended the quality of the food there. I was disappointed upon arrival—Beta Café consisted of a modest salad bar, some ill-flavored chicken, a near-empty cheese tray with one type of cheese, some gross-looking cake/pie thing no one wanted, a soda dispenser, and watermelon that had probably sat out for a week. I had some spinach mixed with avocado, grapes, Craisins (the best part of the salad, sadly), boiled egg, and only one drumstick (I am a meat addict, and the fact that I consumed less than my weight in meat should say enough about its quality). I then braved the watermelon with the conviction that there is no way to screw up fruit, only to discover that it had been coated in a bitter juice (probably lime) that not even my self-made lemon-and-orange-soda mixture could wash away.
D and I then took a post-prandial walk around the Google campus and looked at the fancy toys that Google employees get to enjoy while at work. We passed by rooms reserved for video games, air hockey, and table tennis. We pestered one of D’s friends at his cubicle. I liked the swimming machines, which are person-sized pools that allow users to swim in place by accelerating water in one direction. I also liked the abundance of free snack stations scattered throughout campus that allowed me graze liberally during my tour.
After Google and at the Boyfriend’s suggestion, I drove to the Westfield Valley Fair Shopping Mall in Santa Clara, which turned out to have pretty much the same stores as the Westfield San Francisco Center. I parked outside Macy’s, promptly forgot where I parked, bought a pair of sandals from Bebe that I could have purchased in San Francisco, and spent half an hour walking the perimeter of the mall trying to find my car. After locating the car, I drove 0.2 miles to the nearest Borders, failed to find parking, and drove back to my original parking spot. I had gotten hungry at this point, so I walked down the street to Pizza Antica on Santana Row, ordered a pizza with pepperoni, Portobello mushrooms, and spinach (which tasted much better than my meal at Google), and blogged until it was time to pick up the Boyfriend from work.
For happy hour, the Boyfriend and I went to a Caltech/MIT alumni event organized by my friend C at Bistro 412 in Palo Alto. (The Boyfriend recognized the place immediately as the club he and I had gone to last year where I had danced, taken my pants and underwear off, and kept dancing.) The crowd was predictably nerdy and boring, so we snuck into an entrepreneurial networking event next door, which turned out to be slightly less nerdy and just as boring. I drank a few glasses of wine and a Glenlivet then the Boyfriend and I went home to eat meatloaf, mashed potatoes, and cupcakes, and pass out.
what I got out of my trip to Silicon Valley