An afternoon in Palo Alto

And we think our generation invented technological nomadism!!

First abacus and old computer chips

Playing Ping!

Left: PET the first Commodore with tape! Top right: the first Apple II. Bottom right: my first computer: a Commodore 64.... Hours and hours of video games with my dad!

The self-driving Google car! So exciting! The only vehicle in which you can actually text and drive! It was even nicer to see one on the road in traffic 5 minutes after we left the museum.

We really enjoyed the Computer History Museum. One of the highlights was playing with the Atari Pong game and seeing the Google self-driving car. There are quite a few of those on the roads around here (they still are prototypes, not sold yet). All the adults enjoyed some nostalgia from seeing devices they grew up with - which brought back fond memories of long gaming sessions with friends and relatives.  When's the last time anyone seen an Atari 2600 or Commodore 64? It was my first computer! I spent countless hours playing games on it with my dad! And who can forget those handheld football games (Coleco!).

There are all sorts of cool displays all the way back from 2,000 BC to the mainframes of the 1960s, Cray supercomputers, to the early Altair 8800, and even an original Apple 1! It clearly is more of an adult museum, but Martin made it quite interesting for the kids by explaining to them some of the exhibits, like the Babbage machine and the ancient calcultators, the punch cards for census.

If you are interested, there is a Groupon deal for 6 tickets (Kids 12 years and younger are free). It is a must see when you are at the heart of the Silicon Valley! Palo Alto is home to Facebook, Pinterest, Google, Intel, Tesla, HP, Skype, Paypal, SurveyMonkey and so many more! That is where it all happens!

Then we went to have dinner at an awesome restaurant called Lyfe Kitchen. This chain has been created by Mike Roberts, the former global president of McDonald's, teamed up with Stephen Sidwell, who helped found the meat substitute Gardein, and Mike Donahue, McDonald's USA's former chief of corporate communications, to launch LYFE Kitchen three years ago. So, as you'd expect, Lyfe aims to bring a fast-food sensibility to healthy fare: you order at the counter, go sit down to a comfortable table in a beautiful zen minimalist atmosphere (unlike McDonald’s) and your food is brought to your table in 3 to 5 minutes. The prices are very reasonable. I got a lime ginger chia water (with fresh mint and strawberries floating in it) for $1.50, a side of baked sweet potato fries with chipotle aioli for $3.50. Everything was delicious, from the Crunchy quinoa salad (with edamame hummus and arugula) to the thai red curry bowl and the fish tacos. Aisha was quite excited to see vegan faux-chicken fingers on the kids menu with the sweet potato fries! It’s a mostly vegan restaurant with lots of gluten-free options. The only meat and fish they serve is organic and grass-fed (and sustainably produced). They also serve great local beer on tap.

The chain now has 18 locations and ambitious plans to open 250 more within the next five years. Every dish on the menu is under 600 calories with less than 1,000 milligrams of sodium, and the average check size is $4 to $14, according to the company. Butter, trans fats, white sugar, high-fructose corn syrup and other food additives are barred from the menu, and locally sourced ingredients are used when available. There are no more excuses to eat at McDonald’s when in a hurry!

Then, we went to walk in downtown Palo Alto and stopped for ice cream at Cream for the kids and then to Scoop, a microcreamery (how cool… just like in microbrewery). Scoop uses liquid nitrogen to create their ice cream which makes for a very smooth treat. We loved everything we sampled: vegan mango and strawberry sorbet (the instant freeze from the liquid nitrogen turn the strawberry piece into a gummy bear texture: awesome!), the sweet potato and pecan one, the macha tea…