In this post, I compile a few of the noteworthy places I visited during my two-week stay in the bay area, particularly within the city.
Some of the pictures in this post were taken during the Hop On, Hop Off tour I took. A few of the ones directly below are of: The Hilton Hotel (setting of Dirty Harry), The Golden Gate Bridge, Hyde Street, Taraval Street, Golden Gate Park, etc.
Despite the pre-fall chill, San Francisco never ran out of warmth. Its crooked roads and steeply-sloped alleys straightened my self-doubts. Its strangers, its art, expanded my narrow mind. Its Painted Ladies painted in me a lady who trusted in herself more than she ever did before.
Taken below: Lombard Street, Financial District, The Presidio, old cable car, etc.
Never had four corners (and its surrounding streets) engraved such a vivid picture on my consciousness before. Colorful encounters with strangers-turned-friends, frequent restroom runs in Westfield (my bladder is a ticking time-bomb), a pleasant $20 ribeye steak, countless trips to Ross and Marshalls (I’m not to blame, they re-stock every 2 days!), Tony Bennett’s artful heart(piece), a once-in-a-lifetime glimpse of the solar eclipse, Michael Jackson street shows, and its high-rises forming for the tourist a protective barrier from the otherwise unbearable chill.
San Francisco had formed a thread in my being.
Civic Center & City Hall
All I can say is: it’s waaaaaaay better than Fisherman’s Wharf. Too bad I don’t have pictures to show for it.
Haight & Ashbury
This is Haight Street, center of the Flower Power movement, which is like a mini walk through the 70s-ecclectic. Smorgasbord of color. Vintage clothing, dragwear, antiques, quirky items. Home of late Jimi Hendrix. Tarot-card readers, gypsies, goths, druggies, free thinkers, artists. Good coffee shops. Fine graphic art. Oh, and Wholefoods.
Golden Gate Park
North Beach District
Pier 41 (Fisherman’s Wharf)
The bay area is home to a variety of talent, where passersby are entertained by numerous street performances. These people break free from comfort to pursue a life they love: where economical, social, and emotional stability are not guaranteed, but a sense of being is. These people are the real heroes.
Yerba Buena Gardens
I recall spending over an hour people-watching in a lovely enclave in the midst of the downtown skyscrapers. A baby boy’s first steps, a couple’s passionate kiss, the heavy buzz about a family touring together. The contrast on my solitude made me embrace it all the more. I enjoyed being the spectator of people’s fine moments in life because for a time, I didn’t have to worry about mine.
16 days (minus my 5-day Silicon Valley Tour) in this gem of a city. Tony Bennett summed it up for me more than anyone can.