Monday, June 13, 2011

Suitcase Stories: San Francisco (Alcatraz) & Lady E's Giveaway


This is going to be the last of my Suitcase Stories Series. The rest of the pictures will be posted at my FaceBook page so click here if you want to see it!

"When you break the rules, you go to prison. When you break prison rules, you go to Alcatraz."



I tried my very very very best to remember that quote. I saw it on the walls of Alcatraz when we came to visit.

This is absolutely absolutely my favorite place that we visited in San Francisco. (Aside from the city itself.) The highlight of the trip was the cell-house tour which was AMAZING!

It kind of transported me back to the days when Alcatraz was still a functioning prison.

Anyways, you had to take a ferry to the island and once you got off the ferry, this is what you'll see.

I really don't know what this building is but yeah, it's there.

I don't know what this is either but it's also there.

Alcatraz has the most diverse wildlife especially when it comes to plants! There are actually some volunteers that go on the island to take care of the plants.

There are also sooo many different kinds of birds.
Before they made this island into a prison, there'd be soo many birds living on it.

And it wasn't even an island, technically, it's just a moss-covered giant cluster of rock.

Which is why Alcatraz is sometimes referred to as "the Rock".


Here is the water tower.
Apparently, it's a huge thing in Alcatraz.
I think it's one of the two tallest structures on the island.

Then, we went to the cell-house to take our tour.

We had to get our headsets that will take us on an audio tour.
This is what we saw when we entered.
Cubby holes full of the uniform of the prisoners.

Up on that shelf on the far side are the shoes.

I think those are shaving stuff.
But they look like kabuki brushes to me.

Those in the cubby holes are the pillows of the prisoners.

This is where we now line up.
But then, this place was where they took their showers.

Do you see that bar that goes through the poles in the middle?
The little square things on the bar?
That's where the soap is.
One soap for two people.

This is what a prison cell looks like.
A bedroom and a bathroom all in one.

When I saw this, I couldn't help but think how claustrophobic I'd get if I was confined in a place like this for a long period of time.
I'd go crazy.

For you Potterheads out there, this would be the equivalent of Azkaban.

Grills upon grills of stuff.

Rows and rows of cells.

The pictures above of a cell, that's Block D or Cell D or something.
It's just a room where if you closed the door, you'd be in complete and utter darkness.
Like solitary confinement or something.
That's where you go if you did something wrong.

See the plaque that says visitation?
The green box beside where the man is?
That's where you would see and communicate with your visitors.
If you had any.

There was a story of this man who was imprisoned here and his relatives told the people that he was dead.

He never had any visitors.

And he remembered being called to the visitation area. When he got there, he saw a "pretty lady" then, he realized that it was his sister who thought he was dead.


Here is what the uniform of the guards looked like.
They were called the red ties.

The view from the window of the prison office.

Old buildings.

The ex-prisoners that were interviewed for the audio tour said that the hardest part of being in Alcatraz is that when you looked out the window, you can see the city.

You could even hear people laughing and talking.

And while that's happening, you're stuck in here.
On an island.

It was a classic "so near yet so far" situation.

The prison office.

Even though Alcatraz was a high security prison and all that, there were two escape incidences. This particular one was the one that drew my attention.

There were four (or three, I forgot!) prisoners who wanted to escape. So...
They made these fake heads that they left on their bed that night.
The next morning when role call came and the guards saw this, they kept telling the fake head to get up.
They touched the head and it rolled off so the guard screamed.
(The manly version of the scream.)
From other cells, there were other manly screams.
That's when they knew that some people escaped.

They drilled a hole (using makeshift items they found) on the back of their cell which led to this chamber.
They climbed up to the roof, made a hole in the ceiling and climbed out.
They made a makeshift raft and headed out in the cold, freezing water surrounding the island.
Their bodies were never found.

Soo many cells!

This is the kitchen.

I didn't get to take a picture of this but in the kitchen, where they would hang the knives, on the wall behind where the knife would hang, would be an outline of that knife.

This is so that when a knife went missing, they would know and they would know what to look for.

This is the lunchroom.

There was actually a law or something stating that the food served here should be delicious, presentable and it should have some nutrients in it or something.

My favorite picture that I took.

Just some random tree.

A random car that I saw.

Here is a shot of how packed Alcatraz was when we got there.

Here is what the island looked like.
Small, huh?

So, yeah. That's where the Alcatraz tour ended. It's a must-visit for anyone who goes to San Francisco.

Here's the Disney Cruise!

After going to Alcatraz, before going back to our hotel, we went to Marshall's.
My sister.

My other sister.

Me and my little brother.

What it looks like behind his glasses.

Branded stuff for cheap!!

Can you see the brand? CALVIN KLEIN!

Here we are saying bye!

So, this is where our San Francisco trip ends.

Can't wait to tell you guys about our next leg of the trip!

Hope you like!




Kumiko Mae said...

ano ba natakot akoooo hahaha but wow so interesting!

Michelle said...

Balahibo ko nakataas the whole time!! :-))

Aya said...

Thanks to this post, I felt like I was there na rin :D

Michelle said...

Awww... Thanks Aya!! You're too sweet!! :D

Witoxicity said...

That must have been a very eye-opening visit. I enjoyed reading your post. I agree with Aya. I feel like I've just taken a trip there myself. Thanks! :)

Michelle said...

Thank you sooo much! I tried to take pictures of everything I saw there so you guys would feel that way! Thank you!:-)