Just a quick pop-in to say hi. We’re having ourselves a fine time. We have (spotty, imperfect) internet access. We have not gone native. We are tourists, out ‘n’ proud:

Photo op

This trip — rent a bike, cross the bridge, lunch in Sausalito, ferry home — is highly, highly recommended, especially on a day that starts cloudy and ends in blazing sun. Even though I was faked out by the heavy morning overcast, failed to apply sunscreen and got my first burn in years. Even though riding the bridge means navigating with the squadrons of hard-charging native cyclists, none of whom are amused by our slow-moving, head-swiveling, camera-toting presence. I call all these people, male or female, “Danny.” I never got an open sneer from a Danny, but I did cross against the light in front of one, forcing him to slow and probably making the microscopic difference in his lung capacity that will tank his time in his upcoming triathalon.

Sorry, Danny. Shit happens.

Yesterday was Golden Gate Park, the seashore, a little shopping. Today, lunch at Ferry Marketplace:

Ferry building marketplace

Ah, I have found my people.

(Actually, that’s a complicated question. For every happy surprise — walk into an ordinary-looking pizza joint and find it stocked with tradesmen enjoying pizza with [angel choirs] fresh tomatoes and diced fresh basil on top — there’s more than a hint of foodier-than-thou, which can get real tired, real fast. However, it still tastes very very good, and my palate is enjoying this trip very, very much.)

Breakfast, then lunch awaits. Gotta run.

Posted at 11:28 am in Holiday photos |

35 responses to “Postcard.”

  1. brian stouder said on July 15, 2008 at 11:37 am

    The pictures look electrifying – but also a little terrifying! Half way across the bridge, watching your daughter pedaling in the wind, didn’t it make your grip tighten and your jaw set, a little bit?

    Aside from the fears that they stirred within me, the pictures bespeak a GREAT vacation!

    293 chars

  2. Dorothy said on July 15, 2008 at 11:43 am

    I can’t believe you posted while on vacay! Thanks for the update and the pictures look great. Continue to have a wonderful time!

    BTW to anyone who cares – the house deal went through and we made an offer on a 3 acre piece of land last night. We’re building here, or hope to, and by Christmas I ought to be in a house at long last.

    336 chars

  3. brian stouder said on July 15, 2008 at 11:47 am

    Dorothy – that is great news. Today, our long-delayed re-roofing project is finally happening….it has been a source of low-level stress for weeks now, so I can only imagine the intense stress that must have come from transacting your entire residence!

    253 chars

  4. Julie Robinson said on July 15, 2008 at 11:51 am

    Congratulations, Dorothy! What a relief. We had a house that went two years without selling and by the end we didn’t care how much money we lost, we were just happy it sold. Happy building!

    And where are the pix from the Stouder family trip?

    247 chars

  5. Danny said on July 15, 2008 at 12:00 pm


    Actually, I am very tolerant of recreational bicylists (and pedestrians and equestrian). We all have to share the road and I am very happy that people are getting out and getting some excercise.

    The ones that truly bug me are those who are all decked out in the latest garb from Lance Armstrong’s closet and yet do stupid things like ride two and three abreast around blind corners (and other things that are going to get someone hurt).

    Glad you’re enjoying the vacation, Nance. Don’t forget Muir Woods if you get a chance.

    539 chars

  6. LAMary said on July 15, 2008 at 12:44 pm

    Danny, I’m not even a serious cyclist and those guys bother me. I’ve come around turns and had to swerve. What are they thinking?

    129 chars

  7. brian stouder said on July 15, 2008 at 12:50 pm

    Julie – if you go to, you will see a half dozen shots that Pam posted on her website, plus her commentary

    139 chars

  8. juliestephen said on July 15, 2008 at 1:08 pm

    We rented the same bikes a couple of years ago. 3 boys and my husband and I… I had to walk the bike up the hill before the bridge….We also enjoyed a catamaran cruise from Fishermans’ Wharf Pier 39.. check out: much more fun than the standard ferry boat!

    289 chars

  9. alex said on July 15, 2008 at 1:16 pm

    So how’s Golden Gate Park these days?

    Last time I was there, in 1994, the ground was covered with mattresses, the shrubbery was draped in dirty clothing and the homeless outnumbered the visitors.

    198 chars

  10. del said on July 15, 2008 at 1:33 pm

    Happy Day Dorothy!

    18 chars

  11. Danny said on July 15, 2008 at 1:33 pm

    Yeah, I’ve wondered that too, Mary. In fact, just a few weeks ago I came across a group of three riders coming to a blind corner going in the same direction as me. I tucked in behind them and waited until we were through the curve and then I got up beside them to address the issue.

    I merely said, “Hey, man, I am sure you guys are better bike handlers than I am, but you should know that a lot of near-misses happen at that spot with pedestrians, even mothers with double-strollers. So you may want to ride single-file.”

    They looked at me, thought about it and one guy said, “Yeah, you’re probably right.”

    I think they were really a little pissed about me calling it into question, but I tried to say it nicely.

    724 chars

  12. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on July 15, 2008 at 2:07 pm

    I just think of the Italian team in “Breaking Away” . . . and i hope Jim McMahon calls up Brett and says “Mr. Favre, this is how it works now, and you can enjoy it, if you aren’t a moron about it, sir, with all due respect.” Or Mike Tomczak could explain it to him . . .

    271 chars

  13. Dexter said on July 15, 2008 at 2:28 pm

    As I repose and think of my many trips to San Francisco, one vision always pops up as number one, and I am with Danny here…Muir Woods is memorable above all else. You don’t have to go to Yosemite or Sequoia to see giant trees and witness Heaven-on-earth beauty.

    788 chars

  14. brian stouder said on July 15, 2008 at 2:29 pm

    Here’s a nice old-timer baseball story, with the last surviving teammate of Babe Ruth

    an excerpt:

    “When the train began to roll out of Chicago for St. Louis,” Werber said, “Babe would holler, ‘Cut the cards,’ and we’d play cards on the Green Diamond Express until Babe would give Lou [Gehrig] false bids, and Gehrig was no dummy, he’d recognize what was going on, and he’d throw the cards in the middle of the table and say, ‘Add it up, let us know what we owe ya,” and they’d owe us $3, $3.50, not much.”

    585 chars

  15. Julie Robinson said on July 15, 2008 at 2:37 pm

    Brian–looks like fun. At the Dells we stayed at an old time family style hotel, wrapped around the swimming pool. It looked to have been decorated in the 50’s but was clean and its charm extended to watching your sheets dry on the clothesline. Very low key, and one of our best vacations ever.

    297 chars

  16. moe99 said on July 15, 2008 at 3:01 pm

    Good news on this thread.

    Me, I’m waiting to take my 18 yr old to Group Health to see if he has a broken jaw from playing icehocky last night. Arrived at Urgent Care at 12:30 am and didn’t get home til after 3. Of course the xray was not operative then (though he did get 6 or so stitches in his chin), so have taken the day off from work to shepherd him there when he wakes up. If I didn’t have two briefs due, it would be wonderful hookey.

    449 chars

  17. Dexter said on July 15, 2008 at 3:48 pm

    Everett Scott was a teammate of Babe Ruth. He was from Bluffton. For years he had the bowling alley and billiards parlor just south of the downtown district of Fort Wayne. I used to shoot billiards there 40 years ago . Scott had been dead 8 years by the time I ever walked into the place…one had to ascend a long staircase to get to the bowling alley and tables.

    459 chars

  18. brian stouder said on July 15, 2008 at 4:05 pm

    Dexter – what street was that on?

    I used to go to lake Gage with a friend (about 35 years ago!), and one of their neighbors there was the Hoys who own(ed?) the Brass Rail (on Broadway?)

    The place you refer to is probably now becoming a baseball field

    257 chars

  19. Dexter said on July 15, 2008 at 6:02 pm

    It was on South Clinton , east side of the street, south of Washington and north of the railroad underpass. Scott’s bio says he owned a cigar store and bowling alley in Bluffton , also, when he was playing for Boston Red Sox & the Yankees.
    The new stadium, imho, should be called Dale McMillen Stadium and the field should be dubbed Red Carrington Field.
    McMillen was a philanthropist who said his greatest achievement was when, at age 80, he created Wildcat Baseball in Fort Wayne. This league was for the kids who were cut from the competitive Little League teams. The kids got a hat and a tee shirt and played in jeans , gym shoes, or whatever they had. It was a rousing success.
    Carrington is a FW legend in amateur baseball history in the Fort.
    I am out of touch with Fort Wayne, so go ahead and tell me…it’s gonna be “Lincoln Bank Field”, right?

    869 chars

  20. brian stouder said on July 15, 2008 at 9:09 pm

    Lincoln Bank?! Hahahahahahaha!!! The Lincoln National Bank has been out of existence for more than 20 years, but the iconic Lincoln Tower is now the home of Tower Bank, which is a now-rare locally owned bank.

    The new ballfield is called Harrison Square, but indeed they should sell the naming rights (maybe the Vera Bradley Field or the Biomet Ballpark).

    I had several brothers who were athletically inclined, and ALWAYS “made the team” in Little League. I hated tryouts, and never made the team – but I DID always play Wildcat, and it was fun stuff. McMillan Park was only a block from home, and Windup Day (now Mr Mac Day) was always tremendous. Back in those days, they also shot the fireworks in McMillan Park (nowadays if you hear lots of pops in that park, you better hit the dirt because it’s probably a drive-by!) – and after Christmas they would build a huge pile of Christmas trees there, and then have a huge bonfire.

    By way of saying – yes – Dale McMillan was a local treasure, and his positive legacy continues all around (our daughter Shelby is about 40 miles away at Girl Scout camp this week, and a spacious new Girl Scout pavillion is up there, with the McMillan name on it)

    In fairness, Lincoln Financial Group (which I suspect you meant, instead of Lincoln Bank) remains our greatest corporate citizen, even despite the grievous loss of the Lincoln Museum, which still troubles me greatly.

    1422 chars

  21. Julie Robinson said on July 15, 2008 at 9:15 pm

    Dexter, both our kids played Wildcat and it was terrific. The coaches (many in college) were always gentle, patient, and encouraging. No athletic ability–no problem; you still learned a lot of valuable life lessons and had fun. The teams were divided to make them as equal as possible and if one got ahead too far the other got extra outs. They were all about the teaching moments and frequently stopped games to review techniques. My kids had barrels of fun.

    465 chars

  22. Hattie said on July 15, 2008 at 10:36 pm

    I’m very happy that you are enjoying my home town. I’ll probably get there in September.

    88 chars

  23. alex said on July 15, 2008 at 11:37 pm

    Hey, Brian, dunno if you saw the news but the other McMillen Girl Scout Camp had a couple thousand pot plants growing on it. Such a big raid that staff at the State Police building where it’s housed are passing out at their desks. (For anybody not from Fort Wayne, I shit you not.)

    And congrats, Dorothy. One of my best friends finally managed to sell a house after more than a year and is getting hosed on his equity in addition to paying double mortgages all this time after transferring to another city. I also know of a long marriage that recently went up in flames where two mortgages were involved. (Might have been two women involved, too, but I’m sure that didn’t cause half as much stress as the finances.)

    718 chars

  24. jcburns said on July 15, 2008 at 11:58 pm

    If only blogging paid enough that you, Alan, and Kate could wander the country endlessly, posting as you go. That would be internet entertainment indeed.

    Maybe if you sold the naming rights for your daughter to Saturn.

    221 chars

  25. Danny said on July 16, 2008 at 12:23 am

    That. Killlled!

    Excellent, JC!

    33 chars

  26. James Moehrke said on July 16, 2008 at 12:54 am

    Hey! I was in S.F. today, too! My son is playing in the 80th San Francisco Junior Golf Tournament (we could see the G.G. Bridge from the 17th hole), and posted the opening day low round. He’ll get his name on the big trophy and his own momento. He’s so excited, but now has to go back and beat 3 other players to be the big winner. Now, if he can only sleep tonight…

    368 chars

  27. Dexter said on July 16, 2008 at 2:46 am

    Jezuss, brian! Kick me inna ass and call me Rumpelstiltskin!
    Lincoln National Bank was my bank for years, my first car loan, my dad’s bank for decades before me…if I knew it was gone I had forgotten it. And the tower is my fave building in the country, tied with the AT&T Building in downtown Cleveland (which is the blueprint for Perry White’s “Daily Planet-Superman Building”., and then there’s the Empire State Building.

    523 chars

  28. brian stouder said on July 16, 2008 at 8:38 am

    Alex – that’s the camp where Shelby is! The Camp Director says that none of her staff were involved, and we believe her, since the police have already arrested a bunch of people

    177 chars

  29. MichaelG said on July 16, 2008 at 8:55 am

    I was in the Bay Area yesterday as well. I was in Berkeley. I could see the GG Bridge but it was too far away to see who was riding bikes on it. There is a big old public health lab in Berkeley. It has been replaced by a new facility in Richmond (which claims to be the largest public health lab in the country and is, indeed, huge) and will be razed. I have to survey it to see that there is no residual radioactive shit and to abate whatever is found and get the radioactive materials license surrendered. I had a job site meeting last week attended by no less than five PhD physicists. Talk about trees obscuring forests. Interesting project. Incidentally, there were never any isotopes of any harmful nature employed in this building. All very low level stuff, lower than one would see in an average hospital. The labs up the hill or out at Livermore are a different story.

    888 chars

  30. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on July 16, 2008 at 11:04 am

    Read the latest Harper’s article on the Daniel Boone Forest about the challenges of being a Forest Service employee in eastern Kentucky, where the public lands are widely known to be the ideal location to plant your cannabis seedlings, since tracing the full grown plants back to you is pretty hard. The author does an amazing job of communicating to the average reader how dangerous and challenging this work is (law enforcement rangers in the National Park Service are our point of contact with this world, but it all sounds identical), and clearly spent major time right alongside them. All concerned have major qualms about the war on drugs and a) who we’re at war with and b) who’s winning (answers – a) ourselves, and b) they are, whoever they are, which is probably us anyhow).

    In Ohio, this all applies to the Wayne National Forest, as in WV the Monongahela — but the back edges of a Scout camp would work just as well. Someone else’s wide ranging, rarely visited property, where your cultivation is unlikely to be spotted, poached, or surveilled, giving you a chance to bring in your merry harvest and dry and bag and sell your stupid product.

    1159 chars

  31. nancy said on July 16, 2008 at 11:35 am

    Michael, I was in Berkeley, too. We should have had dinner. It was a spur-of-the-moment late-afternoon trip via BART. All we did was walk around campus and up and down Telegraph. Berkeley’s homeless problem is nearly as bad as SF’s, only the homeless don’t consider themselves to be a problem. It’s a lifestyle choice!

    318 chars

  32. Julie Robinson said on July 16, 2008 at 11:46 am

    Here in south Florida there are panhandlers standing in almost every intersection. Typically they hold a crude sign that says they are homeless, or vets, or lost their job, and often they say God bless. I’ve yet to see anyone give to anyone and I’m horrified by the safety dangers, much less slowing of traffic. My sister says that for many this is their full time job.

    372 chars

  33. Sue said on July 16, 2008 at 12:05 pm

    I was in Chicago a couple of years back and noticed several along Michigan Avenue. All polite and unobtrusive. The only one I responded to had a dog with him. We had a nice conversation and I gave him $5. It was the dog that did it, of course.

    247 chars

  34. MichaelG said on July 16, 2008 at 2:28 pm

    Telegraph has always been a little edgy. Our building is on the other side of the campus at Shattuck and Hearst, an old eight story bldg.

    137 chars

  35. moe99 said on July 17, 2008 at 10:58 am

    Jeff, Kentucky has long been home to those making moonshine and growing pot. In fact, one of the finest in that regard was a graduate of my law school class: former paratrooper, narcotics police officer in Lexington and finally big cocaine runner:

    We might as well give it up, legalize, and tax the hell out of marijuana. We need the revenue for sure.

    436 chars