Where I’m calling from.

Some housekeeping notes, as the summer moves into a higher gear:

I’ll be traveling a bit this month, so posting may be spotty. Wednesday it’s wheels-up for the Lou (as native son Nelly calls it), city of my birth, gateway to the west. I’m only sleeping there, however; on Thursday, I’m renting a car and driving a few hours into central Illinois, where I’m leading a workshop on blogging for the Prairie Writing School, part of the 2008 Cornerstone Festival. And what is the Cornerstone Festival, you ask? I’m told it’s the “Christian Burning Man.” Yes, I’m as intrigued as you are.

The week of July 14 will be off-and-on, too, as NN.C departs for a real family vacation. I keep hoping we can afford Turkey one of these days, but alas, the U.S. dollar is now the new Russian ruble, and it’s just too expensive. But we had a great time in NYC last year, so we told Kate to pick an American city she’s always wanted to visit, trusting she wouldn’t choose someplace like Colorado Springs. She thought for only a minute, and said, “San Francisco.” That’s my girl. So that’s where we’ll be (there, and Monterey). Intermittent blogging that week.

And with that, I realize I’ve left an important event off my morning calendar, so best skedaddle. What must we absolutely, positively do when we’re in SF? I mean, besides visit City Lights Books. That’s a given.

Back in a bit.

Posted at 9:34 am in Housekeeping |
 

49 responses to “Where I’m calling from.”

  1. Lex said on July 1, 2008 at 10:06 am

    What must you do in SF? Rent a car, take a night or two and head about an hour and a half north to stay at the Grape Leaf Inn in Healdsburg, up in Sonoma County. Visit the many surrounding wineries. I realize that’s technically not in SF, but it’ll be worth the trip. Not so much for Kate, maybe, but Healdsburg does have a movie theater, or did when I was there.

  2. The Subtle Rudder said on July 1, 2008 at 10:08 am

    As a longtime resident, my favorite things to do in SF were always neighborhood-based. I like exploring closer to the ground, and seeing how people live. As a traveler (and guide), I usually skip the cathedrals and colosseums in favor of grocery stores and cafes and endless wanderings.

    With that in mind, visit my old neighborhood on the border of the Castro and the Mission. Go to Dolores Park (between 18th and 20th streets, and Dolores and Church Streets), for a view of the city as sparkling Oz, then wander down 18th street for some ice cream at the Bi-Rite Creamery, French pastry/boulangerie goodness at Tartine, or a do-it-yourself picnic at the Bi-Rite Grocery: a food valhalla that I still dream about here in Lincoln, Nebraska, as I shop the aisles of Super Target. Lovely dinners can be had at Delfina, Range, and Bar Tartine–all within strolling distance.

    You can also wander over to Market Street–the big diagonal avenue bisecting the city–and catch an F Market Train down to the Ferry Building. Do it on a Saturday morning, and you’ll hit the farmer’s market, but there are great shops and eateries there anytime, and you can walk the embarcadero along the bay, as well. I miss those views ferociously–magical!

    The F Trains run above ground, BTW, and they’re all classic streetcars from cities around the world. It’s like riding in a piece of Philadelphia 1935 or Madrid 1959.

    Oh, and bring sweatshirts! And long pants! Temps can vary from neighborhood to neighborhood, and the SF sweatshirts you buy at the Golden Gate Bridge (because it can get polar there, especially in the summer) are priced high to sell to a captive (and chilly) tourist population.

    Enjoy your visit!!! And email me if you have any more questions…I know the area very well, and love to help people have the perfect SF experience.

  3. John said on July 1, 2008 at 10:16 am

    If you go to Healdsburg, don’t forget your cousins.

  4. brian stouder said on July 1, 2008 at 10:25 am

    If I was in SF, I would seek out Nimitz’s gravesite at the Golden Gate national cemetery

  5. MichaelG said on July 1, 2008 at 10:27 am

    Do tourist stuff. Ride a cable car. Have an Irish Coffee at the Buena Vista. Eat a great lunch at Tadich Grill or Sam’s. Have Dim Sum at that great place on Stockton and Pacific. Visit the Exploratorium. Walk and walk and follow your nose. Union Street, Chinatown, the Marina. There’s something neat on each block. Surprise yourself. Ride the 40 Stockton, also known as the Orient Express. What I do in a strange city is look at some kind of guide book and then just walk. I also like to take a bus or streetcar or whatever to the end of the line and back. Just to see what’s there. Did I mention that SF is a great walking town? Also a bizillion great places to eat. Bring something warm to wear.

  6. LAMary said on July 1, 2008 at 10:56 am

    Good art in SF this summer, so check that out. There’s a Chihuly exhibit.

    http://www.chihuly.com/

  7. coozledad said on July 1, 2008 at 11:07 am

    The only thing I know about SF is I had an elementary school teacher who lived there awhile, and frequently talked about how she wanted to get back there.
    OT, but you guys may not have seen this. And you must.
    http://www.newsfromme.com/archives/2008_06_20.html#015428

  8. Danny said on July 1, 2008 at 11:10 am

    I highly recommend you staying at the Mountain Home Inn, right over the Golden Gate Bridge in Mill Valley. It is basically surrounded by hiking trails through Muir Woods that take you down to the Pacific Ocean and has great night views of Sausalito and San Francisco. The food is great and it is quick to get to the city too.

    Berkley would be worth visiting on the BART.

    Of course, when you are in Monterey, the selections become easier. Stay on the beach, eat a lot pf seafood. 17-Mile drive is a given. It is dissimilar to 8-Mile.

  9. Connie said on July 1, 2008 at 11:57 am

    We’ve had several great trips to SF. Alcatraz tour is highly recommended. As is the greyline tour to Muir Woods, we took the option of signing off the tour in Sausalito and taking the ferry back across the bay.

    Scoma’s on Pier 47 for great seafood. And China Town is fun, get out of the touristy part into the side streets to see the amazing grocery stores. What is that stuff?

    And every kid should get that Alcatraz t-shirt that says: You are entitled to food, shelter, and medical care. Everything else is a privilege.

    A few days after your departure I will be heading up to Glen Lake/Sleeping Bear for a week. Aaah.

  10. beb said on July 1, 2008 at 12:04 pm

    Are they still doingthe Dashiel Hammett walking tours? That would be interesting.

  11. colleen said on July 1, 2008 at 12:07 pm

    My sister lives there, and is a foodie, so if you want any recommendations from her, let me know.

  12. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on July 1, 2008 at 12:11 pm

    At Cornerstone, make sure to say “hi” to Michael Spencer, aka “Internet Monk,” whose site http://www.internetmonk.com is turning this summer into http://jesusshaped.wordpress.com/ (he’s still posting on both, at least for the summer); he’s the convener of the group blog “Boar’s Head Tavern” http://www.boarsheadtavern.com and all are on my bookmark bar for Firefox right next to this link, so in my head you’re all neighbors. Michael is doing some kind of set of programs (not just sermons) at Cornernstone this next week.

    I’m delighted to hear you’re going to punch up the writing quality of the Christian blogosphere — it could use a bit more bite and humor. Never been to Cornerstone, but often thought about it . . . as a regular church and Scout camp leader, it’s hard to fit that into a summer.

  13. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on July 1, 2008 at 12:19 pm

    Whoa. Nancy, i went to see when Michael was there (he’s this Thursday, Friday, and Saturday), and found this — http://www.cornerstonefestival.com/cstoneXchange/2008/speakers.html

    You are listed right next to Shane Claiborne. Do you realize how evangelically cool that makes you? Yes, you sizzle when touched with an index finger.

    Coulda been there, but no — i’m off to spend the week with a herd of 3-4-5th graders in the great outdoors making smudgie pies over a fire. Shane would at least appreciate that we’re forming intentional Christian community, even if it’s only for a week.

  14. leslie said on July 1, 2008 at 12:21 pm

    Frida Kahlo is at SF MOMA.
    California Cool at the Oakland Museum.
    Rosenblum Cellars in Alameda for the best zin ever.
    Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk for an old-fashioned roller coaster ride.

  15. Julie Robinson said on July 1, 2008 at 12:43 pm

    Oooh! Chihuly!! Please do that one and take lots of pix to post. His works are creative, wondrous and whimsical. He had an exhibit a few years ago at the Chicago Botannical Gardens that still makes me smile in remembrance. It was a bit Seussical without trying too hard.

    Our vacation this year went away with my job, which I had to give up to care for my sister. We’re hoping to manage a weekend in Chicago.

  16. velvet goldmine said on July 1, 2008 at 12:53 pm

    When my husband and I went there about 20 years ago, we went to a spectacular breakfast place high on a cliff, with seals frolicking down below. The only trouble was, the restaurant’s gimmick turned out to be an omelette-only menu. My husband is an extreme egg-phobe, so we left. He’s still kicking himself. “I could’ve just had toast!” 20 years of this.

  17. john c said on July 1, 2008 at 1:00 pm

    Muir Woods is a must. I would also try and rent bikes and ride across the Golden Gate Bridge.
    I always recommend Alcatraz, because it’s great and it’s also the kind of thing lots of folks would dismiss out of hand as too touristy. The boat ride alone is worth it. And the tour itself is excellent. Plus, if you’re lucky, maybe you’ll have a tour guide like Phil Hartman:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FmFVeeLL01c
    If that link doesn’t work, go to You Tube and search for “Phil Hartman, Alcatraz tour guide.” You won’t be disappointed. The only problem is the clip misses the moment a bit before this speech where he intruduces himself with a deadpan: “Hello everyone. My names is John Johnson, but most of my friends call me Vickie.”

  18. Tim S. said on July 1, 2008 at 1:01 pm

    What to do in SF: Walk, and eat. As some of the other commenters mentioned, it’s a great walking town. It’s a great eating town, too. There are great places all over–see our restaurant review site for some SF/Silicon Valley locations we like, or check out Jatbar for hidden gems. Take in a ballgame at AT&T Park–beautiful place to see baseball.

    And if you’re there over July 20, come by Golden Gate Park and wave to us in the AIDS Walk SF.

  19. Peter said on July 1, 2008 at 1:25 pm

    We did the Route 1 thing last year, and what I would recommend, in addition to the above fine posts:

    1. I don’t know the name, but there’s a bike rental place that will let you bike over the bridge and then take a ferry back from Sausalito – uber cool!

    2. If your daughter really likes the cable cars, the central machine building is open to the public (and is on the cable car route, so it’s not out of the way) and has cool displays about cable cars, although I think I wound up knowing less about the cable cars after I went through that place.

    3. The old ferry terminal is now a really cool market (it was featured in the Times).

    4. In Monterey, make sure you get to the Aquarium early. We got there right after it opened and had to wait 30 minutes to get in, and when we left the line went to the horizon. It’s a great place, but it’s not worth waiting more than 30 minutes to get in.

    5. Sure, it’s touristy, but it’s worth going to Alcatraz. You have to order tickets way in advance, however. When it was time for our boat to go it was really raining, but I think that only added to the atmosphere.

  20. kayak woman said on July 1, 2008 at 1:50 pm

    I am so envious! I have been to San Francisco exactly once, for five days, and my favorite thing to do out there is spend time with my daughter, who grew up way too fast, graduated from college and moved out there. But that doesn’t help you much.

    I’m not much of a tourist but I am a walker and I will second those who suggest just walking around the neighborhoods, that’s what I enjoyed the most, along with a trip to the Pt. Reyes National Seashore (also a lot of walking). But Kate will probably want to do more than walk around and you’ve gotten a lot of great suggestions. Have a wonderful time!

    This summer, I’m limited to maybe a week of slugging around on my family’s L. Superior beach. Not that I can complain.

  21. A Riley said on July 1, 2008 at 2:08 pm

    I second the vote for the ferryboat ride & lunch at the ferry terminal. We started across the bay in Marin, looked at the Frank Lloyd Wright designed Marin County Civic Center building (fascinating!) and took the ferry from Larkspur into the city for lunch on the water-side terrace of the ferry terminal – and then a drink on the city-side terrace of the ferry terminal. It was *wonderful!*

  22. Liz said on July 1, 2008 at 2:13 pm

    My mom posted just above (kayak woman) – for a kid, and if the weather is only so-so, check out the Exploratorium or Zeum. The SF MoMA also has great programs for kids and there is a Frida Kahlo exhibit there right now. Also, the Presidio is nice for nature-in-the-city. Burritos in the Mission are always a good bet… that’s my neighborhood, it’s full of beautiful murals if you just want to walk around. Don’t count out the East Bay either, it’s fun to take a ferry from Embarcadero to Jack London Square in Oakland and see that side of the Bay. You can also do the same to Sausalito.

  23. caliban said on July 1, 2008 at 2:19 pm

    City Lights Bookstore? Yeah, sort of. Lawrernce Ferlinghetti? Bukowski with a wryly arched pinkie avoiding the shift key. Aquarius Records? Absolutely. I’ve been to San Franciscoand actually rode the elevator in the Francis with Edward G. Robinson. A gentleman, and a true star.

    http://www.aquariusrecords.org/

    And Kayak Woman. At least nobody dumped jet fuel in your lake. We live in fear that something like that might happen in Port Royal Sound, what with the marines at Parris Island. We invade their shores occasionally by kayak, and always get off with stern warnings.

  24. Dorothy said on July 1, 2008 at 2:25 pm

    My oldest sister used to travel a good bit in her job many moons ago, and she said SF will always be her very favorite city. Not sure why, but with recommendations like that, and the ones above, you’re sure to have a memorable trip! Have fun.

    My good news that I’d like to share with y’all is that we FINALLY sold our house! It went on the market on 5/17/07 and this past weekend it sold. And best of all, it’s a cash offer. We’re proceeding with plans to build a place on a lovely piece of land here in Knox County, Ohio. I’ll pray for patience but I think it will come to me easily. We have an excellent builder (my friend Mary’s husband) and I’ve already started picking out fixtures and cabinets for the kitchen. And we haven’t even purchased the land yet…

  25. brian stouder said on July 1, 2008 at 2:38 pm

    Congratulations, Dorothy!

    That must be a tremendous relief.

  26. John said on July 1, 2008 at 2:42 pm

    Did you resort to the upside down St. Joseph statue?

  27. Connie said on July 1, 2008 at 2:49 pm

    Best night view: The rooftop restaurant at the Hyatt just off Union Square. Once the dinner hour is over you can get great seats with a great view, and have a drink.

  28. kayak woman said on July 1, 2008 at 2:49 pm

    Hmm, jet fuel in L. Superior? Probably not, at least not a whole lot. But all the years of B52s and other assorted jets out of Kincheloe flying low over our woods probably led to my many years of plane crash in the bay nightmares. Eventually a real estate developer came along and grabbed some of our land (long story) and now condos and McMansions invade my sleep instead.

  29. caliban said on July 1, 2008 at 3:22 pm

    Lombard Street isn’t supposed to be, but for the non-jaded tourist, it is pretty amazing. In a day and age when people drive Rovers half a mile an hour over speed bumps, like those Olive Oil muscles will take out the tranny, the ultimate is worth driving, or biking, down. And the landscaping is exceptional.

    I think it’s extremely funny that the Wikipedia entry for Lombard Street describes it as ‘east-west’. Mostly, it is, but sorry, its most famous stretch throws passes to itself like Crazy Legs Hirsch, who shoulda played for the Niners. Or at least Vince Lombard-i.

  30. moe99 said on July 1, 2008 at 3:28 pm

    I watched a jet dump its fuel over Puget Sound when I was a staff attorney for the Seattle Regional office of the Securities and Exchange Commission. It mostly evaporates, iirc. The jet was in trouble and coming in for a serious landing and they didn’t want the fuel on board for obvious reasons. So might want to recheck your sources there for the concern.

  31. alex said on July 1, 2008 at 3:33 pm

    Not sure of all the best places to go — haven’t been there since 1994 — but you sure picked the best time of year to go, at least according to my parents, who’ll be there at the same time as they are every year. They stay with some old friends in Marin County and take day trips all over the place.

    If you visit the Lesser Lights bookstore (or whatever the hell the gay one is called) be sure to say hey to my old friend and failed presidential candidate Joan Jett Blakk if she’s still working there.

  32. caliban said on July 1, 2008 at 3:41 pm

    I’ve got no problem at all with dumping fuel if it saves passengers lives. I’d imagine the ecological damage of the plane’s crashing for having the fuel burden would be a whole lot worse. I suppose, at any given moment, somebody is performing excretory functions in most of the bodies of water on the face of the earth. Doesn’t mean I have to like the idea.

  33. moe99 said on July 1, 2008 at 4:11 pm

    If jet fuel evaporates in the air, it doesn’t get into the water–at best 2%

    http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/chi-ohare-emergency-landingjul01,0,5187004.story?track=rss

  34. Dexter said on July 1, 2008 at 4:19 pm

    So there you have it. All the things I would have mentioned already have been, so I will rank them as I would in making a countdown must-do-must see list.
    1) This is a package, Alcatraz, Muir Woods, Sausalito

    2) Chinatown, and the Powell & Market cable car that runs down to Fisherman’s Wharf (Ghiradelli Square is really expensive now…a mini-mall)

    3) Japanese Tea Gardens and San Francisco Institute of Art, in and near Golden Gate Park. Be careful if you stroll around in the wilds of Golden Gate Park…a friend says the wise avoid that these days…crime, doncha know….and it’s easy to get to the Pacific Ocean beach from Golden Gate Park. Every time I was there it was nasty, rainy, cold…and a bleak beach , not an attraction at all…avoid it.

    4) Coit Tower and of course as Caliban wrote, Lombard Street…it’s beautiful, the gardeners keep it that way…outstanding!

    5) And of course, you simply MUST acquire a bicycle and ride across that damn famous bridge and give us a full report!

    I lived in Monterey as a young man and it’s pretty lame…just follow the guide books. Cannery Row is just an expensive collection of boutiques these days…but a walk-through of the place is cool, especially if you know Steinbeck, and the story of Doc and all that went on there in Steinbeck’s day…then of course, if you love Steinbeck, a quick trip along the roadways through the lettuce fields over to Salinas for the Steinbeck Museum.

    OK…pick and choose, and after you are aquarium’d out, be sure and spend at least two hours at my favorite location in that area, Carmel Beach, down the hill from Carmel. There is also Carmel Valley, but you probably will have no interest in going there.

    Warning: Since you are going to have your daughter along, it might be wise to Google for nudist beaches along the Cal-coast…there are many of them, and you wouldn’t want to deal with all that with a kid along…I accidentally wandered into a large group of nudists at Garrapato Beach once or three times…this was years ago and they are still there…but OMG what a BEAUTIFUL little beach!

  35. colleen said on July 1, 2008 at 4:54 pm

    Ooo. If you can, drive thru The Presidio.

  36. alex said on July 1, 2008 at 4:56 pm

    I remember happening upon my first nude beach — on the Monterey Peninsula in 1976 when I was 13. Not sure whether it was officially nude, but the people frolicking there obviously didn’t seem to care.

    Also remember a hippie restaurant called the Two-Ball Inn, memorable for the women with leg and armpit hair like I’d never seen before. (Again, this was 1976). This was in a hippie town in Marin County — forgetting the name, but I understand these days the locals keep taking down road signs to prevent tourists from finding it.

    Kate’ll get an eyeful no matter where you take her. 1976 was also my first exposure to drag queens and other provocateurs on the streets. For all I know maybe SF’s been all Disneyfied like Chicago and New York over then last ten to fifteen years and the shock-value merrymakers have moved on to more affordable environs, but I sure hope not.

  37. KarenNM said on July 1, 2008 at 5:18 pm

    I lived in the Bay Area for 10 years (moved away two years ago to Portland) and playing tour guide was my absolute favorite thing! Let me offer some more details on some of the suggestions above:
    1. Get your Monterey Bay Aquarium tickets on-line, and then you can get in the door very quickly. You’ll still want to arrive early, because it gets crowded.
    2. From the Aquarium, head south and travel down 17-mile drive (the entrance is truly just down the street from the Aquarium). The views of the coast and the homes are breathtaking, and you can finish up with some window-shopping on Ocean Avenue in Carmel, where the street ends into a beach that runs along the shore below Pebble Beach.
    3. The Dim Sum place that was mentioned on Stockton and Pacific is probably New Asia. YUM – my favorite place for dim sum in SF. Another good spot is Yank Sing, near the Ferry Building. Walking through Chinatown is a wonderful experience.
    4. If you can go to the Ferry Building on Market on a Saturday morning, do it for all the amazing fresh produce and food stands. If you can’t get there on a Saturday it’s still worth going – the permanent food stalls inside are fun, and you can sit on the back dock, have a drink and watch the boats go by.
    5. The Alcatraz tour is great, but again, get your tickets on-line in advance. I can’t tell you how many bummed-out tourists I saw that went to the day-of window only to learn that ALL that day’s tours were sold out.
    6. If you want to do something between SF and Monterey, stop at the Stanford campus in Palo Alto (my former home, even if it was just renting an apartment on-campus). The campus is gorgeous and they do great student-led walking tours.
    7. If the Giants are home, go to a ballgame! The team’s not so good this year, so tickets may be easier to come by, and the park is worth the visit. Be sure to have the Garlic Fries from Gordon Bierch, and a Cha-Cha bowl at the vendor in center field.
    That’s probably more than enough, but if you want more details feel free to drop me an email. After all the enjoyment I’ve had reading your work here, offering some information in return is the least I can do!

  38. Jenine said on July 1, 2008 at 5:30 pm

    I hope you’ll enjoy all the NoCal goodness on your trip. I lived in SF and then Oakland for about ten years. I would recommend the SF Moma and the Yerba Buena park in front of it, downtown. Definitely spend some time looking at the Bay, either over by the Ferry Bldg or from the ballpark.

    I love The Subtle Rudder’s suggestions. Dolores Park and its Muni train stop have a wonderful view.

    Have you folks who recommended bike riding across the GG bridge actually done it? It seems like it would be awfully windy and noisy. And I think it would inflame my fear of heights. But maybe I’m being a wet blanket.

  39. caliban said on July 1, 2008 at 6:58 pm

    Watching the Dodgers beat the Giants would be good, but they don’t play at Candlestick anymore, and juan Marichal would be incarcerated.

    I rode a bike over the bridge, Jennie. I don’t often admit it, but heights spook me, mostly when people in movies are threatened. In real life, and what seems a former existence, I was a competitive diver and threw ridiculous tricks off 10 meter platforms, occasionally with very bad results in training. Pressure blisters and welts.

    Water is hard as concrete when you’re traveling per second, per second. Suicide by bridge is undoubtedly possible, but don’t you have to have the talent to hit just right? Scariest bridge is over the Savannah River. (I love Boston, and I think bridges amd not meaningless McDonalds arches are architecture’s crowning achiements, but why did they just copy the design?)

    The GW is spectacularly windy, all the time, and when they put up ‘windy’ signs, have to think they mean business. Drove over in a Wagoneer towing an 18-foot trailer with a Suzuki 750 strapped in. HAIR-RAISING. The most beautiful bridge ever built is the Tappan Zee (and the Brooklyn a close second.)

    Of all the despicable horsecrap foisted on gullible Americans by W, the guy that was going to burn down th Brooklyn Bridge in plain sight with an acetylene torch is probably the most ludicrous. The cables are 16 inches thick and each contains 19 strands, containing 2381 wires at a total of 21,432 wires in each cable. Good luck wacko trucker from Toledo. There are actually people in the Nunined States (That’s actually how the Ninny in Chief pronounces it) that believe this sort of stupidity, and they believe W served and John Kerry shot himself to get a Purple Heart.

    Gates of Eden, y’all.

  40. Connie said on July 1, 2008 at 8:22 pm

    Oh yes, Yank Sing, most I’ve ever spent on Dim Sum, and well worth it. There are a couple of locations. Ghiradelli Square, the Ghiradelli Ice Cream Shop is a nice place to take a break. And my mistake, the hotel with the great view bar is the Hilton.

    On a trip for my conference some years ago…..my husband got up one morning, from our hotel near Union Sq. he walked through Chinatown, up and over Nob Hill and on down to the Golden Gate bridge. He walked across the bridge, then continued five miles on down the road to Sausalito, where he took the ferry back, walked over Nob Hill the other way, and arrived back at our hotel shortly after I did, around 5.

    Congratulations on the house sale Dorothy. Which reminds me. There is a 4 stories high end fabric shop right at Union Square which is to die for. Just looking, nothing here I can afford. And take the Bart to downtown Berkeley. Stone Mountain and Daughter – natural fabrics only in a ware house setting – is barely a block from the stop. And Chez Panisse is easy walking distance in the other direction.

  41. merrill said on July 1, 2008 at 10:41 pm

    Two wonderful restaurants we found on a trip to SF last year:

    Tommaso’s Pizza in North Beach. Fabulous, cheap and a wonderful atmosphere. Near City Lights, as I recall.

    Taylor Street Coffee Shop in the Tenderloin. Great, cheap breakfasts with lots of fresh fruit.

    And all kids, young and old, must go to the Exploratorium.

    Have fun!

  42. caliban said on July 1, 2008 at 10:48 pm

    San Framcisco in the movies:

    http://www.slate.com/id/2193951?wpisrc=newsletter

    I think Clint is brilliant. I think he’s often spoken truth to power he doesn’t trust as far as Shane could throw ’em. Joey Wales would spit tobacco juice on W’s faux cowboy boots. I also figure he’d know a Swift Boat LT from some fullofshit Republican operative.

    I don’t think he believes people of color are evil or that bona fide wack jobs like Elmer Fudd Scalia should be walking around with assault weapons. I think he’s made some great movies. “A Perfect World” was among them.

  43. basset said on July 1, 2008 at 10:56 pm

    Never been there, and don’t care to go. I have a real low tolerance for condescension, and in my experience San Francisco residents are second only to New Yorkers in their conviction that their city is the center of the civilized world… and their willingness to share that with you whether you want to hear it or not.

  44. Catherine said on July 1, 2008 at 11:30 pm

    Mostly seconding here, but: The pilgrimmage to Chez Panisse… and interesting for Kate to see Berkeley & environs. SF MOMA for the architecture as well as the art. Last but not least, sunset on the beach in Carmel. The light, the light! (trying not to sound like Thomas Kinkade)

  45. Catherine said on July 2, 2008 at 12:25 am

    Oh, and a good book for Kate: There’s an American Girl set in SF. The 70s girl… can’t think of her name… her best friend is of Chinese descent.

  46. Dexter said on July 2, 2008 at 1:32 am

    A video…crossing over to Marin County on two wheels

  47. Terry WAlter said on July 2, 2008 at 2:10 am

    Cornerstone- a Detroit housewife-what in the name of feminism is going on? Still have time to cancel your trip? And aren’t they aware that your blog frequently contains words that, as Simon & Garfunkel would say, are never heard in the Bible.

  48. Connie said on July 2, 2008 at 6:05 am

    I once got to go to a private party at the SF MOMA. Like the NYC MOMA, I got to see my kitchen chairs on display.

    Eames molded fiberglass, rescued after 30 plus years in my father’s waiting room.

  49. Cathy D. said on July 3, 2008 at 10:13 am

    Nancy, are you a Ray Carver fan too?