Thursday, April 17, 2008

The City

The usual sweaty palms scene at the airport this morning. We couldn't take off at seven like we were supposed to because they were doing some kind of inspection -- of the suspension I think. It's seldom going to go as scheduled, mostly we won't be able to fly any more without experiencing some kind of mysterious complication that makes the airline employees all twitchy.

But in the end it was no big deal, since we only took off an hour late. But then, coming into The City, I thought we were gonna collide with another plane. We got closer and closer and closer, until I could pretty easily read the numbers on his tail. But it was only like being next to somebody on the freeway. He touched down two seconds before us, on next runway over to the right.

San Francisco is The City. There is no other to compare to it. The only one I've ever been in that even comes close is Boston, which is very cool and urban, but Boston can't compare to this place.

They have real public transportation here. Walked from the baggage claim to the automated airport train, and took it to the BART station. Took the BART train from the airport to downtown for five bucks. Got off under Market Street, took the escalator up one floor to where the Muni street trains run, and caught one for the neighborhood. Got off two blocks from Rachel's place, walked down the hill with my rolling bag, let myself in (she's not here right now).

You can live in this beautiful city and forget the prodigality of owning a car. You can't do that in Southern California, and that's why SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA IS DOOMED! (Sorry, I didn't mean to shout). I'm gonna move here. I'll have to get a roommate, but I'll be able to take the bus or train, and walk where I want to go. Mostly walk.

Wake up, America. This is the future.

Mostly I walked today. It's beautiful and sunny and temps in the 60's -- perfect day for it. Walked to the store and the bank. Walked up the hill to Walgreen's for "essential supplies," since she left me only the last square, and she eschews all other paper products. And I also walked to the apothecary shop, for other "essential supplies." First time I've ever had that experience.

Yes, this is a lovely city, full of fascinating people. It also has real architecture, and, last but certainly not least, real bread. Try buying THAT anywhere else except New York City!


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Joe said...

Dave, I like your plan pretty much except that I need my space really seriously. i also think we all should drive something like the Tata Tiny electric powered car and have freedom of independent mobility.

i go to the produce market once every two to four weeks and pack my regular car now. That is basically it for my grocery shopping. it is so much more efficient than going to the store very often. i have more time for things I like to do this way.

San Francisco has a climate almost perfect for human habitation. People should live only in such locations, meaning that the present population of 7,000,000,000 is about 100 times bigger than we should have on the planet.