The "original" Original Joe's restaurant was located in the Tenderloin District of San Francisco and was a favorite old time restaurant of me when I first moved to San Francisco. After a fire a few years ago, the owners finally re-opened in North Beach on a corner facing Washington Square. Some of the artifacts of the old restaurant were saved and now grace the exterior and interior of the new restaurant. It seems the "same" only better!
This desolate corner buffeted by an elevated freeway, littered with trash and and the hopeless smell of the homeless is soon to be transformed into an urban "oasis". Taking advantage of the surge in popularity of food trucks and outdoor eating, it will provide a central space in the SOMA area for outdoor tasting. They plan to be open 7 days a week. Check out their website.
This dragon float has been sitting in San Francisco's Civic Center Plaza for the past week waiting to fly through the firecrackers in the New Year's parade. At dusk it is lit from inside and glows with positive cheer. There are 12 animals in the Chinese zodiac. If you know someone's sign, then you can guess someone's age. Happy Birthday, Alex!
When replacing the old doorbell with a new intercom on our 1880's era Stick Victorian in San Francisco, we revealed the redwood paneling typically used for construction at that time. A naive 19th century view of there being a seemingly endless supply of natural resources led them to use redwood everywhere. Today, redwood is increasingly rare, expensive, and used sparingly.
In the future we will probably also seem naive about some things. I wonder what?
Tree leaves fall revealing the architecture of branches -- the air clear and brisk. I stroll purposefully towards the Embarcadero admiring the view of the Bay, grateful for the demise of the elevated freeway that once blocked this magnificent view.
Every December the Civic Center is lit up in festive lights of red and green. This time I caught City Hall bathed entirely in red lights.
I was sitting on a bench in Golden Gate Parks Botanical Garden where the squirrels are so tame this one came right up and touched my camera. Cute little critters.
This mural above the entrance to the Marines Firemens Union is at 240 Second Street in San Francisco. It was probably created over 60 years ago and recalls a time in when San Francisco Labor Unions were at its peak. Art such as this celebrated the contribution of working people.
Today San Francisco is a much different place. Blue collar workers in warehouses and factories are now almost extinct, their places of work converted to chic boutiques, restaurants, and internet start-up companies. San Francisco blue collar workers now are regulated to lower level service jobs where you smile and stay in the background. There are no murals celebrating the contribution of these people. San Francisco would be a better place if the contribution of all people were recognized.
Seeing a fire engine roll to a stop makes me think something not so good is happeinging. Is there a fire? Walking up to Vega Cafe on Folsom Street I saw the big red fire engine roll up in front of the cafe. No problem -- It's reasurring to know that our San Francisco's finest fire fighters appreciate a good cup of Blue Bottle coffee!
Park Chow in the Inner Sunset looks as though it might have been there forever. Close to UCSF and Golden Gate Park, it has a laid back nostalgic air as though it were a survivor of 1960's.
The food is mostly straight forward American food with several Asian offerings. It's been a family favorite for years. On "warmer" days you can sit comfortably in the front entrance patio or on the roof-top deck. Both have heaters to fend off the chill. Prices are modest. Food is good.
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