A very inspired trip to San Francisco

I love San Francisco.  Possibly one of my favourite cities to visit that I’ve been to so far.  I probably say that about everywhere I go, but I really do mean it about SF.  I took a couple extra days for an extended Easter long weekend, and made it a great little spring holiday!  I feel like the time goes so fast, so I plan on doing a series of photo posts from my trip over the next week.

First, though, a brief synopsis of the trip and my experience of it.  It’s my second time to San Francisco.  The first time I went a few years ago with some girlfriends.  This was the first time there for Marty*, so we did a lot of the tourist attractions.  We visited Alcatraz, Fisherman’s wharf, the Golden Gate Bridge…

* Marty and I recently had the conversation that went, “What do I call you on my blog?”  I was working with M., but full name disclosure from now on!

Hannah and Marty at the Golden Gate Bridge

I have a tough time with tourist attractions.  I don’t really like crowds, I usually prefer to spend some time getting a feel for a city somewhere other than the main tourist attractions.  Fisherman’s wharf was practically the bane of my trip…  So crowded, so expensive, hard to find authenticity when you have that many people in one place to see the sights…  I guess it is an integral piece of the city, but I honestly would rather find a local neighbourhood and a cafe.  Maybe I just don’t like identifying myself as a tourist.  Or maybe just not one of those tourists.

Regardless, I did enjoy the carousel at Pier 39.  I find circus and amusement park themed places really fun and interesting.  I’m inspired by the shapes and colours, and especially by the whimsy, of those places.  I took a couple pictures, but my favourite by far was this one:

I love the crazy mer-horse!  The orange and turquoise is fantastic, and I love the wide-eyed, startled expression.  It’s a working fixture on a merry-go-round, so the paint is meant to last, not be a work of art, but I love that someone has gone to meticulous detail to paint in all the teeth.  I managed to snap this photo just before a small child jumped on board.  I’ll admit, I was a little jealous…

We also went to Haight-Ashbury and wandered around for a while.  We took the bus, maybe like regular city-dwellers might do, and got to feel a bit like locals on our random public-transit route.  I didn’t get to Haight-Ashbury the last time I was in the city, so I quite enjoyed poking around a bit.  I snapped a picture of this brightly coloured building on the corner of Haight and Masonic:

I find it a bit strange to see a Money Mart in the ground floor of this colourful Victorian house (I dig the spire!), but I suppose that’s part of the modernization and evolution of a city and a neighbourhood.

I really enjoyed the buildings in San Francisco.  I kept thinking to myself that they all look so well maintained, with their pretty painted colours and incredible details.  Even in the not-so-ornate parts of town, the houses looked great.  I think it’s a big part of the city’s identity – all the row houses with their crazy garage doors on tilted angles, and their cheerful colours (maybe to ward against the fog, although it was clear and sunny for the whole weekend we were there!)

I really love San Fran.  I feel like it’s a funky city with a lot to see and do, and a very west coast attitude at the same time.  It probably won’t be soon, but I definitely plan on going back in the future!

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