We knew we had a few days in the Bay area with folks and things we wanted to see, so we thought an AirBnB might be just the thing. I’ve never used the service before but It seems like a perfect opportunity. I signed in not really knowing what to expect or what would be available. I didn’t have much luck until I noticed some of the other filters you could use to search for the kind of stay you wanted. I saw ‘Boat’. “Hmmmm”…I said to myself. I dived in and within seconds, saw something available…not only for when we wanted it but for a stupid-great price…in Alameda. It turned out to be perfect. We were close to everything, the boat (while never actually out on the water…just mored to the berth) was small and neat and comfortable…just right for two people used to car and tent camping. I took Jyo into the city on the lovely Bay ferry, which we were able to catch just a mile or so from our BoatBnB. A great lunch, a fabulous walk along the pier and a sunset return ferry to Alameda made the day for us and let me show Jyo some of the many reasons I love San Francisco so much. We were actually a little sorry to say goodbye but are pretty certain we’ll find a way to do it again. Oh and before you ask…yes. The Captain’s Hat and Pipe were included. Onto a quick stop in Fresno next before heading out into our desert adventure…..
We needed to drop off the pugs we’ve been babysitting and Jyo has a dear friend in LA, so we made a quick weekend gettaway to Venice Beach. Its one of my favorite places to people watch and the weather could not have been more perfect.
San Francisco. It’s really my favorite American city. Always has been. I spent some formative time there in my youth so Im sure that has something to do with it. And I’ve heard all the complaints…too noisy…too dirty…too political…too something or not enough of another. I don’t care…the energy…the air…the history…the incredible grab-bag of humanity…the architecture…those goddamned hills…I love all of it. ‘cept for the traffic…yeah yeah…I get that part. That part suuuuucks.
Jyo had only been to the bay area many years ago as a child, so I knew I would look forward to showing her some of my favorite places. But Jyo had a surprise for me…she had arranged, with her Dad, a tour of the San Francisco Integral Yoga Institute, where he had been married back in the 70’s. He is a carpenter by trade and has been hired to come back and oversee renovation on the building which has been there on Dolores St. for over 50 years.
If you don’t know, the Institute was started by the same Swami known for opening the Woodstock Music Festival, Sri Swami Satchidananda. Its a beautiful building, well on its way to being lovingly restored by a man who knows it well. He toured us top to bottom and included a view from the roof of the mission district that is my new favorite place to see the City.
After, I took her to Golden Gate Park and to a couple of other places I love so much. And thanks to my lovey friend Casey and her husband Dave for putting us up (AGAIN!!!) for the night…oh and for the margaritas. Always for the margaritas.
A quick trip up to Anacortes for an afternoon on the bay with Captain Ken. Just being out on the water was thrill enough but then to be so close to these incredible animals in their own habitat was a thrill of a lifetime. We had perfect weather and a very smooth ride on Spirit of Orca.
When I was a kid, I saw a set of antique post cards from Zion and Bryce. They were old prints that had been hand painted. The colors in them were impossible to me…I thought maybe the color artist had gotten a little carried away. I thought then I’d love to see if those color are real. Thats the real reason I decided to come here. Those damn post cards. They’ve always stayed in my mind.
From Las Vegas, to get to Bryce, you gotta go through Zion and oh thank god you do. I didn’t make any stops there other than to shoot from the road but its for sure on my list of places to come back to and explore.