SF - Bruch in North Beach and an evening in Haight

Trip Start Nov 08, 2007
Trip End Jan 03, 2008

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Flag of United States  , California
Sunday, November 11, 2007

The weather on Sunday completely made up for the all day rain on Saturday.  We went and had brunch with Tracy and Paul.  I've known Tracy for almost 10 years now, but hadn't seen her since the last time we were in San Francisco 3 years prior.  We met up in North Beach for brunch sitting at a table on the sidewalk in the sun.  Then we headed back to see their condo just a short walk away.  You wouldn't have believed the views from their roof patio unless I took pictures, so I did. Unbelievable.  The bay, Alcatraz, you can see it all from there.  Their condo is absolutely gorgeous as well, but you'll have to take my word for it - I didn't walk around snapping pictures...

After saying our goodbyes we wandered back up the street to City Lights bookstore.  It's a very famous, historic bookstore that, when you come right down to it, basically sells books. So we went in, Becky looked at me at one point and asked, "What am I missing?"  Neither of us really understood why you HAVE to go there when you're in San Fran, but we've now checked it off our list, nonetheless.

Next we met up with Rick.  He had been working for most of the time we were in town, but thankfully we got to spend the rest of our time in town with him.  And where do you think a hippie would want to take you?  Haight St.  It was wild - tons of freaks and hippies.  At first, Rick was a little concerned that we had walked so far without being offered any illicit substances.  Finally someone walked by us chanting, "mushrooms, acid...".  Phew...

Golden Gate Park was very cool.  We didn't go to far in, but Becky got a chance to see her first drum circle.  It was a pretty big one - probably about 20-30 people drumming and another 200 or so just hanging around listening, dancing, throwing frisbee, etc.  Like a little mini Dead show parking lot in the park.  While we were there we heard a car accident, and soon the police showed up. A short distance away from the scene I saw a group of guys smoking joints.  I mentioned how it was funny that they were smoking pot so close to the police without worrying when Rick reminded me, "It's not illegal."  So weird.  Get this - you can't smoke cigarettes in the park but you can smoke weed if you have a medical permit.
We walked back up Haight St and found a Thai restaurant that Rick recommended to get dinner.  The food was great, it was cheap, and we knew we had done something right when the place was absolutely jammed by the time we left.   Jamie Love, a friend of mine from LA whom we were planning on seeing down there further along in our trip, happended to be in SF that evening and he met up with us to eat.  Afterwards we walked to a bar to have a couple beers and relax for a bit.

Soon it was time for us to begin wrapping things up in SF.  We needed to get back to Berkeley, get our stuff, and then get back over to SF to the Greyhound station to catch our 11pm bus.  Rick, Becky and I took the bus to the Bart station, and then the Bart train back across the bay, and Rick very kindly drove us back over and dropped us off at that bus station.

I like San Francisco a lot.  I will admit that at times, it was a little much.  Almost every concievable piece of land has been developed on, and since it's all hills around, you get the feeling of being in a bowl of houses, buildings, streets, and highways.  However, it reminds me a lot of Boston for some reason, and Boston is my favorite city so far (might change on this trip, who knows).  At the same time, I didn't realize until being out here this time how many people we know in the area, and it was great seeing all of them.

Total expenses for the day: $207.74

brunch: $42
slice of pumpkin cheesecake: $2.50
2 sesame buns: $1
2 bart tickets: $6.20
gelato: $3.20
bus to Haight St: $3.00
book: $1.39
bus fare back back to Bart from Haight: $4.50
Thai food for 3: $52
pitcher of beer: $17
2 bart tickets back to Berkeley: $6.20
bridge toll back over to catch the bus: $4.00
2 Greyhound tickets from SF to LA: $64.75
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