Please enjoy the song while reading.
(all photos taken by me, my friend Kathe, or are from my private family collection)
Growing up in the east bay area of California and having relatives in San Francisco, I spent many days in the famous city.
My grandmother and two uncles, 1915 San Francisco.
I now live a little more than an hour's drive away. I think sometimes I take San Francisco for granted. It's a city filled with a diverse population, radical thinkers, gorgeous architecture, spectacular views of the bay, great dining, fun neighborhood joints, and a walker's paradise.
My father, playing in the school yard across from his home on Russia Street.
Yesterday I spent the day in the city with 5 wonderful friends.
We walked, and ate, and drank, and laughed, and even cried a little as we caught up on each others lives and shared the day.
As we moved from neighborhood to neighborhood I felt a bit like a tourist in this city I'd spent so much time in while growing up.
There are so many neighborhoods to explore and some favorites to revisit. The Dogpatch area is a nine square block neighborhood east of Potrero Hill that originally consisted of working class families and escaped the perils of the 1906 earthquake. Today it is an area in transition. Definitely worth a visit.
Artisan chocolatiers handcraft high quality sweets in their store located in the Dogpatch neighborhood.
Chocolate molds decorate their storefront.
One of our young 'uns works in the store as a chocolate enrober. Connor was a bit embarassed, perhaps, by the onslaught of gregarious women in the somewhat quiet store. But we did bring him lunch from Bakesale Bettys-a fab. lunch place in Berkeley.
San Francisco has long been a place where families share the beauty of the city.
My grandparents at the Legion of Honor in the early 1900's with my father and uncle.
As we made our way through the city I felt incredibly lucky to have this time with my friends on such a lovely, warm day in January.
I remember my father driving us up to Coit Tower on the 4th of July to watch fireworks being shot over the bay.
Even Christmas lingers a little longer in the city.
It is a cocktail lover's paradise. That Lemon Drop Martini went down waaaaay too easily.
And famous for Irish Coffees at The Buena Vista.
People from all over the world visit Boudin for the famous sourdough bread. During the 1906 earthquake heroic efforts were made to save the sourdough starter that first began in 1849.
My friend pointed out that "bread line" has a completely different connotation here.
While my friends waited in line to purchase their breadly delights, I clicked photos. My husband's newly diagnosed diabetes requires limits on carbs. No Boudin for my house.
The hand crafted breads reminded me of Grandma Lena and how she made everything by hand.This top photo of her with my father was taken in her terraced backyard. It was my favorite place as a child where I dug up potatoes from the fragrant black earth, picked tomatoes from the vine, and watched her as she made wine in the cellar.
This city by the bay was the starting point for my family after immigrating from Italy. They worked hard, scrimped and saved to make their dreams come true.
I have to remind myself of that with each visit.
This holiday vacation was memorable in so many ways.
Thanks for sharing them with me.