Our little travel group met in my room to go together to the Marguerite station. Jing asked Fei if she had brought her motion sickness pills; we held the Marguerite while she ran back. Two friends on their way to Berkeley that morning, Qi and Jianbo, had asked to join for the train ride.
We waited in CalTrain Station for Nicola. Chris, who lived in Tokyo as a child, played Japanese elementary school games with Jing and Fei. Nicola picked us up and we were on our way. We made a pit-stop at a Food 4 Less in Tracy. Fei got ice cream. Chris got donuts. Later, we stopped in Oakdale. Fei got pants at Big Kmart and we ate teriyaki for lunch.
Approaching the park, we stopped at an overlook. Drove into Valley and Yosemite Village to get advice on trip planning at the Visitors Center.
Our first hike was to the base of Yosemite Falls. From there we followed a bike path past Yosemite Lodge in search of a meadow where, at sunset, animals should appear and from which meadow Half Dome, lit up orange, should be visible. On the way, we crossed Swinging Bridge.
We sat in the meadow a while waiting for animals, but none appeared, and we left when it started getting dark. On the way back to Yosemite Village we took pictures of a group of deer we found grazing.
The drive up to the Yosemite Bug Hostel was made a bit more exciting by the sight of a truck on fire with flames shooting out its windows. We turned around to check on it, but it had been quickly extinguished.
Found the Yosemite Bug and checked in. Got to our room, with its bunk, sofa, full bed and balcony. It was a bit dark and we needed to share a bathroom, but we counted this is part of the adventure.
We argued jokingly for a while about sleeping arrangements then went to dinner at the hostel’s “Recovery Cafe.” Jing and I split a meal, Nicola and Fei split a meal. After dinner, Fei pet a cat that was sleeping on a sofa in the cafe. A lot of youth were also around the cafe and the hostel in general.
We took Pictionary cards and Scrabble back to our room. Split: Fei and Chris (with one minute to guess) against Nicola, Jing and I (with 45 seconds to guess). Played to 6; Chris and Fei won.
After the game, Jing returned to reading, I to writing this record, and the rest to Scrabble.