Friday, February 5, 2016

Memorable Moments in Santa Clara

Rabin Man Shakya

In December 2015 right after the Christmas holidays, I along with my spouse Naveena Shakya were in Santa Clara. We stayed with Dr Mahendra Man Shakya, a physicist  and his wife Pratibha, my sister-in-law.  Our visit to Santa Clara was very important to us because we could meet Dr Mahendra and Pratibha after 14 years. Oh boy, that's a long time.

Likewise,  Naveena was overwhelmed to meet her childhood friend Dr Roshani Shakya,  her husband Dr Pradip and her mom at Woodland, Sacramento. So, our nine-day journey to California took us not only to Santa Clara but to San Francisco, Sacramento, Santa Cruz, Stanford University etc. Our  walk-through at the capitol building in Sacramento was also very memorable.


In Sacramento

Well, it was Dr Mahendra who took us to many interesting places in Santa Clara including the Levi's Stadium, the venue of Super Bowl 50. He generously took us to SF, Sacramento, Santa Cruz, Stanford University, Twin Peaks, Shoreline and so on.

Compared to my extensive travels and trips to the cities of the former USSR and Europe, I have not travelled that much across the United States. Never been to big cities like New York and Boston.  Well, I have been living in Portland, Oregon for over a decade and so far have been able to see  Chicago, Seattle, Dallas, San Antonio, Austin, Eugene etc and this time, to see Santa  Clara, SF, Santa Cruz, Sacramento etc.

Santa Clara, no doubt, is a small  city, but it is a fast growing city. One of the distinct things  I noticed in Santa Clara is the preponderance of Indians who according to 2010 US census are 43,889 (37.7 %) of Asians living in Santa Clara. In Santa Clara, you see Indians wherever you go. Also, you see so many Indian restaurants, Indian sweetmeat shops and Indian groceries. And when you go inside these stores, you see they are crowded with the Indians and you feel like you are somewhere  in New Delhi.

Well,  I am pretty  much impressed by my visit to Santa Clara which is located in the center of Silicon valley  and which is home to the headquarters of several high tech juggernauts like Intel and Google. Visiting Santa Clara in the evening especially along the El Camino street and Santana Row reminded me of the bright and sparkling, illuminated streets of European cities.

The unforgettable  moments of our journey was  that of a visit to  Golden Gate bridge  of San Francisco. I have seen the Alcatraz prison building in several movies and documentaries but it was the first time I saw it. Alcatraz  today is a public museum which is one of San Francisco's major tourist attractions.

Anyone going to San Francisco should not miss to visit Fisherman's Wharf  which is also a popular tourist attraction in San Francisco. The Fisherman's Wharf is famous  for being the location of Pier 39, the Canary Shopping Center, Ghirardeli  Square, Wax Museum, Ripley's Believe It or Not Museum etc.

We had an opportunity to be at Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk which is an oceanfront amusement park in Santa Cruz. I must admit that our  visit to Santa Clara and other  cities widened my perception about California.

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