Some More Bay Area Quick Thoughts (March 22, 2017)

I’ve got a lot of overseas photos and stories to share with readers! Until I get to that (yup, I’m really behind on my updates, I apologize), here are just a few more thoughts regarding the Bay Area (home sweet home).

Lots of Construction Activity

Similar to the vibe I got in Hong Kong, it just seems like construction and development in the Bay Area continue to operate non-stop, 24/7 around the clock. Since I’ve been gone for nine months, it was a quite a treat for me to come back and get reacquainted with all the development projects.

It looks like the BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) extension down to Milpitas and Berryessa is progressing nicely.

Here are the tracks captured from the Berryessa neighborhood.

The new development project in the Great Mall (luxury shopping + apartments) is still ways behind, and I guess it’ll take another few years to move forward… I think they were just breaking ground around the time I had left in the summer of last year, but for the most part, I expected to see more progress made with this project.

Oh well…

Down the block, it looks like most of the housing that was under development near Trade Zone/Montague is mostly completed. Damn, that’s a lot of new inventory that has been introduced to the market! It’s incredible to think that demand is still outstripping supply (well, maybe it’s not but housing prices are still in a pretty massive bubble, IMHO). Lots, lots, lots of new housing supply and much more of it coming online soon!

Again, the construction projects just never seem to end here in the Bay Area…

Oh, and it looks like Santa Clara now has a Whole Foods market operational at Santa Clara Square. I vividly remember visiting the nearby Speciality’s Coffee a lot (in my past life as a corporate engineer drone), prior to new construction commencing in this region. I haven’t stepped foot in Santa Clara Square just yet, but I did pass by it on my way to the 101 freeway. It looks interesting, to say the least… I’ll make sure to visit soon, maybe even this upcoming weekend!

Consumer Inflation

Inflation is a topic that’s on my mind a lot these days… Since arriving back in the Bay Area, the biggest impact and impression that I’ve gotten is just how much more expensive practically everything is around here…

The other day, I took a stroll inside a Fry’s Electronics and was appalled with the retail prices on some of the latest Apple accessories…

$129 for a trackpad? Are you for real?

$76.50 for a “Magic Mouse”? What’s so magical about it?

OMG, this is nuts…

So Green!

On the brighter side of things, wow, I don’t think that I’ve ever seen the Bay Area look so GREEN before! Thanks to all the heavy rain, if I didn’t know any better, I would have thought that I had landed in the Pacific Northwest, instead…

OK, the Bay Area isn’t quite THAT GREEN, but still, the grass and trees have never looked better!

Good Eats

I’ve enjoyed myself immensely overseas, indulging in some good eats in: Hong Kong, Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto, Kobe, Ho Chi Minh City, Vung Tau, Da Nang, Cebu, etc.

Still, when it comes down to it, I do very much miss the “fine dine cuisine” that runs prevalent throughout the Bay Area… The YAY Area really is an amazing place and melting pot for delicious food!

I had some Hu Tieu (Vietnamese Pork and Seafood Noodle Soup) the other day, and I must admit that it was better than anything that I had while I was in Nam…

Yup, it might sound crazy, but I actually prefer the Vietnamese food found in the Bay Area (and Orange County) to the REAL thing itself…

So, those of you who are living in Cali and LOVE Vietnamese food as much (or more) than I do, you’re really blessed and have it made living here! In this case, the “imitation” stuff is not only just as good, it’s even better IMHO!

Please note: I’m just talking about restaurant quality food here, not AUTHENTIC home cooked meals!

Fixed Laptop!

In a previous post, I mentioned that I busted my laptop screen while I was overseas in Panglao Island (Philippines). That incident totally ruined my day, but what was most frustrating was that it made the task of blogging so much more difficult… Man, it sure ain’t easy trying to post from a smartphone or tablet…

Anyway, once I to back to the Bay Area, one of my first orders of business was to get the trusty ol’ MacBook Pro fixed!

I found We Fix Macs from a basic Google search, and I stopped by their shop in Palo Alto two days ago to address this most pressing issue.

I’m happy to report back that I’m now typing to you all from that very same trust ol’ MacBook Pro… but one that has had a brand new screen installed!

You probably can’t tell from the image above, but man ol’ man, this baby is now back in business and I gotta say, the Retina screen looks better than ever before! Maybe I’m just in a state of euphoria right now or something like that (having a fully functional laptop can do that to a person), but I couldn’t be more pleased with the results.

Shout out to Abbi and the fine folks over at We Fix Macs who did an outstanding job and got my machine back in working order in less than 2 hours! Heck, they even cleaned/polished the base (keyboard and trackpad) FREE OF CHARGE, making it feel as brand new as possible!

The repair (brand new screen replacement) set me back $500, but the customer service was top notch, and one of the staff members even generously offered to meet me in San Jose to deliver the fixed laptop, in the event that the installation needed more time than expected and I had to face the dilemma of driving back home during rush hour traffic. Luckily for me, I was outta there in no time with a fully operational MacBook Pro in hand, and got back on the 101 before 5:30 PM (around the time when the mad rush really starts getting super crazy and every lane is backed up).

So, anyone out there who has a busted Apple product, I would highly recommend you check out We Fix Macs and give Abbi a shout! Abbi is an avid world traveller as well, and coincidentally enough, he just got back from Hong Kong too! No wonder we got along so well…


Anywho, that’s all for now!


Fight On!

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3 years ago

Welcome back, Jay. Would love to hear your recent travel stories and thoughts on mining stocks.

Investment Hunting
3 years ago

Good to have you back in my neck of the woods. I agree with everything you said. rices seem to go up everyday. The San Francisco skyline is changing very fast, lots of new high-rise towers. I hate all the costs, but it’s still such a nice place to live.