Prompt: My Favorite City: San Francisco


We lived in San Francisco for almost 4 years, in an apartment one block down from the entrance to Golden Gate Park.  On Sundays we would get a copy of the San Francisco Chronicle, pick up muffins from Just Desserts and take all that with a thermos of coffee to the Arboretum.  If early and lucky, we would settle onto our favorite bench by the duck pond.  We would converse with the mallards and wood ducks that would float by, noting which ones slipped through the tall grass to the smaller pond, the “love pond” as we called it.  Yes, we had caught a pair or two cavorting in the small pond.  We tried to give them privacy, but they splash quite a bit when they are … engaged in amorous behavior.

We loved to walk up to Stowe Lake and further up to Strawberry Hill.  Our favorite Mexican restaurant was on the other side of the park and we thought nothing of walking 45 minutes to the restaurant and then 45 minutes back home, drunk on margaritas, looking for crayfish in the fountain in front of the DeYoung Museum.  Our favorite Japanese restaurant was two doors down from our apartment.  Our favorite pizzeria was across the street.  Four bookstores were within two blocks of our home.

When we did take the bus or train, we would often find ourselves sandwiched between Financial District CPAs and residents of the Tenderloin.

This was 1986-1990.  It’s not the same anymore, but it’s still where my heart is.

About 1WriteWay

Writer, blogger, knitter, and cat lover.

26 comments on “Prompt: My Favorite City: San Francisco

  1. You had a great location. Always love to be in walking distance of bookstores and restaurants. Too bad the place isn’t the same.

    • It’s much more gentrified. The dot com business is pushing the working people out. It used to be much more racially and ethnically diverse when we lived there. No so much now. A lot of those bookstores are gone, and restaurant prices have skyrocketed. Good news is Tommy’s (Mexican restaurant) and Ebisu (Japanese restaurant) are still there (at least, as of last June). It’s changed but I’d move back there in a heartbeat if I could afford it 🙂

      • Sounds like a lot of areas. Around here, the bookstores are gone outside of Barnes & Noble. A lot of empty stores too. It’s rather depressing.

      • Yes, where I live now is pretty sad, too. We still have a couple of chains but the independents have gone belly-up for the most part. Some of it is the economy, but some is also the population where I live. Two universities and a community college: you’d think the city would be full of independent bookstores, but it never has been. All anyone cares about here is … football. And guns.

      • We have a community college and a big university too. Not sure what caused the decline of bookstores. Even the big one is having trouble, so I think a lot of people are simply shopping on-line.

      • Good point. With Amazon, you can save on shipping and sale tax for the most part. I’ll admit that the spending I do at B&N (beyond the weekly coffee and cookie) is always with 20% off coupon. My husband thinks they may be losing money off us 😉 What I really miss about having access to multiple bookstores (especially ones in walking distance) is the browsing. We just love to browse and could do it for hours in SF.

      • The coupons are there for a reason, so I think you’re good. 😉 Better than what one person I know used to do. She bought a book, read it quickly, and then returned it for store credit to get the next in the series and repeat. She was proud that she made the purchase of one last for so long. All she had to do was make sure she didn’t get the same cashier in a row, but I think she used multiple locations.

      • Did she never hear of a library?

      • She did, but they didn’t have all the books she wanted. Also, she didn’t like waiting for someone to return stuff.

      • Nicer than what I said to her.

  2. I have been here! It was fun! Got kicked off a city bus! Well, we volunteered to leave, bus driver flipped out and wouldn’t take any more people so my family just got off and walked back to the hotel, it wasn’t that far, lol.

    Oo, ducks! I love ducks! (I’m weird okay) it sounds like a really good place to live, I’ve heard it is pretty expensive though…

  3. It sounds like you had a lovely life there!

  4. San Francisco sounds like a city with small town charm. I would like that.

    • It was the neighborhoods. Every neighborhood was like a small town. I actually felt more connected with people there than I feel in my current home, and I’ve lived here for 20+ years.

  5. I’m there as often as possible – just there, at the park…or walking The Haight sighing and longing for the 60’s. On a good freeway day, we could have been neighbors!

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