The City by the Bay!

Monday, Dec. 13, 2010
This morning I put some flowers in my hair and left San Geronimo for San Francisco.

Just north of the city on the west side of the Bay is a string of $wanky communities that all look alike and run together: Fairfax, San Anselmo, Ross, Kentfield, Larkspur, Corte Madera, Mill Valley, Marin City, Sausalito. Here're a few photos from along this stretch:

There's a nice bike path that runs alongside Hwy 101 from Mill Valley into Sausalito. I shot this video somewhere between Mill Valley and Marin City:

And then!:

This really felt like the second big destination. (The first being the 'Welcome to California' sign.) Here I am looking pleased (Or proud? Maybe smug? Relieved?):

I mounted my camera to the rack on the front of my bike and recorded the ride across the 'Gate. Problem is, every little bump, crack and vibration is amplified in the camera. It's not as bumpy as it looks:

It's one thing to drive across the Golden Gate, but if you ever get a chance to walk or ride across it, I highly recommend it––it's quite amazing. (And you can't beat the price!) Here're a couple of photos taken on the walk/bikeway:

Once on the opposite (south) side, I shot these photos:

I had an offer from Steve's dad (Steve is my sister Amy's "squeeze."), Angelo, in Vallejo for accommodations, so from downtown I was to catch the ferry to Vallejo which is at the north-northeast end of the bay. The Bay is so large that the ferry, a high-speed catamaran, takes an hour to get there! Here's what the ferry looks like:

From the Presidio at the south end of the Golden Gate, I meandered through the city, staying near the water so as to avoid the city's notorious hills, working my way toward the Ferry Plaza to catch the 5:15 to Vallejo.

I had decided that while in San Francisco I would photograph the SF stereotypes, so on my way to the ferry I captured a few:

The Marina District:

The Ghirardelli sign:


A cable car:

The Ferry Building:

Inside the Ferry Building is the Marketplace:

Snapped these as the ferry was departing:

Angelo isn't really in Vallejo proper but up in the hills northeast of Vallejo in a newer development called Hiddenbrook. It took me a while to get from the ferry to his house, but Angelo was very gracious and had a wonderful pasta dinner waiting for me when I arrived.

The problem with doing a trip like this is how much food one can/needs to consume after bicycling all day. When invited into someone's home for dinner it's embarrassing and/or potentially obnoxious when asking for third, fourth, even fifth servings. Sometimes I'll have rations stored in my panniers that I can eat later in private if dinner––for whatever reason––proves unfulfilling. Fortunately I haven't yet had to resort to clandestine calorie consumption.

Angelo has a grand piano as well as a very nice electronic piano and I asked him if he wouldn't mind playing. I recorded him playing music from West Side Story, edited down here:

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