Sunday, September 06, 2009

Off the beaten (tourist) path in SF

Today was one of those fairy tale days that I never wanted to end. I finally got to meet Anon F and she was every bit the friend I had known she would be. We met up shortly before noon and spent the next 6 hours seeing the SF sights that are not on the standard tour and talking nonstop.

Our first stop was the Vulcan and Saturn Stairways in the Corona Heights neighborhood of SF. Not only were the houses on either side incredibly varied in color and architecture as we climbed the steep stairs and then descended, but the views of the city were spectacular.

Next we went toward Golden Gate Park. We had delicious white arugula pizza at the Arizmendi Bakery Cooperative, then toured the botanical gardens.

From there we went in search of murals, both wishing Steve were with us. Balmy Street in the Mission off 24th Street is an amazing collection of 30 murals mostly of Hispanic origin. Some date back to the mid 80’s, while others are much more recent. All are emotion-filled and colorful depictions of life’s struggles.

We then made our way up Bernal Hill in the Mission District, which offers spectacular views of the city. Before leaving we silently walked the labyrinth outlined in stones. I felt only gratitude and happiness for the day’s experiences.

We shared a final cup of mint tea and a blueberry pastry at Martha’s before parting ways. We both felt a little like Cinderella after the ball was over. But instead of leaving behind a glass slipper, Anon F simply left behind a promise of continued affection and a hope that we can pick up where we left off the next time our paths cross.

My day didn’t end there, however. I enjoyed a wonderful gourmet dinner with my daughter at Foreign Cinema, an eclectic restaurant in the Mission District that actually shows foreign films on a big white wall, while the guests dine on things like arugula salad with roquefort, seared scallops, and squash blossom risotto.

It was quite a day, but tomorrow promises even more fun as we drive up the coast in search of wineries near Sebastopol and oysters in Tomales Bay. Stay tuned!


Blogger lettuce said...

looks and sounds great - i'm glad you're having such a good time!

3:57 AM  
Blogger Cyndy said...

San Francisco sounds so fabulous! It's one of the few major cities in the US I haven't visited, but it's definitely on my list! It's great that you're having so much fun there.

9:27 AM  
Blogger Terry said...

Oh, sighhhhh. San Francisco is one of my favorite places in the world. One of the greatest cities in the world. It is still itself, while other cities have become clones of one another. Have a wonderful time.

12:27 PM  
Blogger Dsquared said...

All I can say is I wish I was there with you! Enjoy! Tell R I'm next :-)

1:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What a blessing to finally meet you in person, and to have such a magical day together! A wonderful blending of hearts, conversation, feelings, place, sun and air, architecture, gardens, vistas...

And yes, I'd love to meet and show Steve around a bit if he ever comes here. :-)

Until next time, indeed!



8:09 PM  
Blogger Kristin said...

What a gorgeous trip. It sounds like it's all the better for the anticipation and delayed gratification.

5:04 PM  

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