Most of the girls had purchased a t-shirt or hat that said something about Alcatraz so they wore them.
I think it's a good thing for kids to see what prison life is really like. Then they know they don't want to end up there when they get older.
They slept on the cold, hard floor and had to go to the bathroom in a hole in the ground.
The beds had to be made daily, the cell clean and tidy. There were a lot of rules that had to be followed and if they weren't the inmates were quickly punished.
There is a light house on the island too. The island was first used by our Military. The prison was first built to hold prisoners at that time. When they closed down the Military location, they kept the prison running to hold them.
Then the State purchased the prison to use to hold what was thought to be the most harden criminals throughout the country.
Once Alcatraz was getting to old and to costly to maintain, they moved the prisoners to other prisons. The Island sat empty.
Indians went over and tried to claim it as their own. It wasn't long before the State came over and kicked them off and shortly thereafter, opened it up to the public to tour.
While it was open as a prison, the guards actually lived on the island. Down below the prison area there were houses built for them. Kids would go on the boat every day to school on the main land.
The houses are no longer standing. Time, weather and lack of care has all but removed them. You can still see a few walls that have crumbled down but not much else.
We got to see the yard where the inmates were allowed to go to get some exercise. I was surprised at how large the yard actually was. I could picture the inmates out there in groups, talking, playing sports, cards or board games. Some plotting getting back at either other inmates or guards for something that was done to make them made.
I have no doubts many fights broke out in this yard. However, while we were there we could actually notice the beauty of the old building and the history of the place.
After Alcatraz we went back to our hotel and got our car. Then the girls wanted to go to China Town. We went to the fortune cookie shop. They actually make their cookies by hand like they have done for years and years.
They let us have a sample and they were sooo good. We ended up buying a bag that had both the normal fortune cookies and also chocolate fortune cookies. YUM!
Once they all bought what they wanted they were in a hurry to head back to the hotel as they all wanted to go swimming.
What? They could go swimming back home. Why would they want to spend their time going swimming on vacation?
It normally is so busy on that street that it goes so slow but we were lucky, no one was in front of us and only a few cars came after us.
They had so much fun. Laughing the whole way down.
The girls were tired from our long day and again asked to go swimming. So, we drove back to our hotel room.
Along the way we all noticed the lovely old buildings. They were all so pretty.
Once back to our hotel, the girls quickly got in their bathing suits and I took them to the pool while Maureen and Michelle walked to get sandwiches for dinner.
The girls were so excited to swim they didn't even want to eat dinner but of course that was part of the deal if they went swimming.
So they ate dinner then got right into the water. Let me tell you, once they started to eat I think they saw they were hungry as they all ate every bite.
These girls had so much fun swimming. I think the fact we were at a hotel, away from home and it was night time that it made it much more fun then swimming at home.
When it was time for the pool to close, we went back to the room. Everyone was super tired. We took showers and got ready for bed. Watched a little tv and packed. We couldn't believe it was going to be time to go home in the morning.
Thankfully we had a late flight and would have time to still have some fun before going home.
Our last day in San Francisco will be told in the next post.