<< San Fran Part II


March '05

Ooohgeee dooohgee dooo. We're somewhere, but not here. Maybe there. Where oh where? It's hard to keep up with ourselves. 

Okay, here's what happened. We led you to believe that we were in Carmel finishing Cole Haan back in January. Actually ~ Greg built the storefront. Then the Family did the construction cleanup. Then we went to San Fran to help with H2O downtown (while living in the Candlestick ghetto). Then we came back to Carmel and the Family helped with the final cleanup... 



THEN ~ we went back to San Francisco to help with the H2O again. But this time, we went car-less as the front end of the VW almost fell out. We left it in the shop in Monterey and brought just our home to San Fran. Being on the smarter side ~ as in learn from your mistakes ~ we decided to stay in Marin County instead of the Candlestick park. The park was a little more expensive, but not ghetto. We figured we'd do public transportation since it worked out so well last time.

Candlestick is south of San Francisco, from Monterey we never had to drive the RV into town. This time, we decided to come through town on PCH 1 which turns into a city street through Frisco. It does run in West Frisco toward the Golden Gate where there are fewer hills. Marin County is on the other side of the GG and is home to towns such as Sausalito, Marin, and San Rafael.

Driving over the GG for the first time ever ~ in our home. Freaky.

and way cool.

Larkspur is where we found the nearest RV park to San Francisco and it's near a ferry terminal, just off the highway near bus terminals, and in a flood zone.

It had been raining here weeks before and the residents said they would come out of their trailers into knee deep water. The laundromat on site was shut down due to the flooding and rain was in the forecast. We found our high ground on the abandoned railroad tracks. The dilapidated bridge in the background goes over a channel and is very dangerous to cross according to the kids... Where's Kes?

The area was actually pretty cool. The wetlands are such that San Francisco bay water floods into them at extreme high tides and rainwater from the neighboring mountains can add to the flooding. That's Mt. Tamalpais where mountain biking was invented just beyond where Austin's pissing.

We're looking into the normalcy of a 12yo with brown, oily, urine.

Timon found what appeared to be some sort of resort across the wetlands a little into the bay.

Upon closer observation, it appeared to be a really old fortified resort...

with gothic architecture and guard towers...

So we walked over to see if they had hot tubs or a heated pool we could jump in, maybe a tour? ~ there was supposed to be a museum but it had closed down due to lack of interest. Days after this pic, Scott Peterson drove by this sign for life. Damn.

This was the walk towards the ferry ride. Turned out commuting into San Fran from Marin is way more expensive than doing it from within the city limits (as in ghetto Candlestick park). When we were within the city limits, we were able to purchase unlimited passes for the MUNI transport which includes buses, street cars, and cable cars. For Marin, we had options for the GG Transit buses and ferries which are priced per ride and available in books of 20 rides for a slight discount. Because of the price, we walked A LOT! We walked to groceries about 2-3 miles one way and hauled them back on our wheeled cart and backpacks. Our laundry just stacked up.

...as did our love.

...and our appreciation of our time together. We were really bumming the way Greg had to spend so many hours in downtown alone. The kids and Jenn were limited in their visits because of the cost. On our first day off together, we rode the ferry into town to enjoy San Fran once again.

Our RV was parked about a quarter mile behind these homes that are all built on stilts in the wetlands. There are boardwalks that go to the homes from a parking lot off the street. They must carry everything in. There are sooo many of these communities in the area and there is something about them owning the buildings, but unable to own the land. We were also told this is some of the original 'beat' houses that preceded the 'hippies'.

The Larkspur ferry terminal was a real commuters terminal. One of the morning ferries holds probably 250 people and sells out every morning. On the weekends, kids ride free. 

There are two high speed ferries that service this terminal ~ they have massive water jets that compress the water and spew it out the back with ginormous force causing the catamaran design to hydroplane ~ about 30mph which is impressive for a boat this size.

First you gotta put out of the harbor area past San Quentin.

oooohhhh. that'd hurt.

Most weekday mornings when Greg rode by the prison, the prisoners would wave and holler at the ferry. Kinda creepy but nice to see the high spirits in such a negative place. Charles Manson lives here!

Coming across with the kids and Jenn on this weekend, we had lots of fog. That's the Richmond Bridge.

And the Golden Gate.

Alcatraz (the island that doesn't really float according to the govt conspiracy cover up)

Coming into San Fran in heavy fog was creepy. There were foghorns going off everywhere and the deckhands kept pointing randomly for the captain towards where they thought the various foghorns were coming from. Then out of nowhere, buildings started appearing. We were going like 3mph and it was scary.

And kinda cool.

Gandhi freed his people.

Went on the front lines himself, infinite courage. Non violence. He won his war.

'Bush is a punk ass chump' (bumper sticker originating in Austin)

While in downtown San Francisco on Mar 6, we decided to celebrate Sunny's b-day party at Greg's job site.

Sunny told us she wanted to have her b-day party with her friends in San Fran. She called her Grandma back in Texas and told her that she was celebrating with her friends, Mike and Joe.

That's Mike and Joe Anastacia with us. Betting Grandma thought they were a couple of punk ass chumps!

Sunny has never been registered in public school. She never made agreements that her friends should be her age or anywhere near. She knows that 'friend' means somebody that she trusts and gets along with, someone that respects her and listens to her, someone she can play with. She could care less if they are middle age guys. Friends are friends regardless of any discrimination. It took Greg and Jenn years of re-conditioning to learn that age is a retarded way to base a friendship.

Also for Sunny's b-day this same evening, we joined Jack Johnson for a free concert at the Virgin Megastore around the corner!

Sunny got front row with the other kids (that's her in the AC/DC hat :-) More about jack on the next page.

Just around the corner from the Virgin store is the jobsite Greg was working (behind the plywood construction barrier). Just up the street one block is Union Square and behind the pic is where they turn the Cable cars around on Powell and Market.

We spent a lot of time hanging out on the back of the truck watching people.

Greg's work as superintendent was to make sure that the plans for the job were being followed properly, coordinating sub-contractors, licenses/permits/insurance issues, architecture and drawings, and coordinating with the General Contractor's office back in SoCal. It's funner being a Dad. Kesley misses Greg.

Also had to deal with the picketers mixin' with the pimps one day. The union was striking because there were non-union framers/rockers.

Looking towards Market St where the Cable Cars turn around ~ chick with a mohawk and electric guitar roaming the streets ~ way more normal than some we saw.

The homeless and panhandlers used to be taken care of in San Fran with paychecks for being homeless?!? They are everywhere and very aggressive. When we first got there, we were fairly sympathetic and noticed the locals would just ignore them altogether. After some time they do wear on you. One younger guy fully capable of work would wander through the streets screaming some cry story and making believe that he needed just one quarter, PLEASE, just one quarter for a sandwich!! Making believe that he usually doesn't panhandle ~ but we would see him every day for weeks with the same shtick. Another was walking the cold streets at night shirtless and in shorts shivering and not even asking for money. After seeing him several times one evening, Greg offered him some Reese's and a jacket ~ guy went off on him angrily replying I want money! Most were disappointed when Greg did finally purchase Reese's in quantity to give something other than cash. The majority do just want cash, and want to panhandle.

When Greg arrived at this store, the demolition had just been wrapped up and he helped frame the interior...

Giving kids lift rides to check measurements...

Rock and flooring...

Tile and painting.

The kids came home with mucho blue tiles that have become doubloons among other 'free toys'. Imagine.

After our last stint in Frisco, we headed back to Monterey with no plan on our next gig. We had some cash from our construction jobs, but no other bids available to keep working with the same company. Jenn was sad ~ and we celebrated Easter!

Where Jimi Hendrix lit Pete Townsend's guitar on fire!

'Jimi Hendrix 1967' carved in stage he lit Pete Townshend's guitar on fire

On this stage in 1967.

Kesley also got the idea to haul the dog around on the bike.

Wasn't a bad plan. But Greg ruled 'no distance'. I'm not carrying that dog and those parts for any distance.

And voila.

Jenny has a b-day instead.

And as it always happens ~ we meet the right person at the right time. Karen(?) was at a book store we frequented for internet access. We were stressing at the coffee counter about what's next? latte or drip? gotta slow down spending; what work? where do we go? California or Texas or Washington or Canada? Europe? Australia? Fiji? Mexico? We actually had lost sight of some of the barenakedfamily initiatives around this time, we needed to keep making some cash, now. 

Karen stepped up with her beautiful self and bought us strangers Latte's. She saw the stress. She calmed it with a simple gesture. We talked with her that night for hours. She has a great story about being in college, not knowing what direction to go, doing research for sex education, landing a job as an intern for the State, identifying a problem, creating a solution, getting the job, and on this trip to Monterey she was in a conference accepting a position to be the leader in her field. She was on top of her game. She was pursuing what she was passionate. She really got us dreaming again. God closed some doors on us so more would open.

March 23, 2005 (from bnf now)



There ~ a naked family bare to the bone

 all of these places they call there... home

they see life on the road and wide open spaces

no matter where they roam

looking at there ~ faces

its easy to see dirty sneakers

and all there

the barenaked family  

-Author unknown (but thanks)

We just took the liberty to title and emphasize the above poem that was shared with us in the day-tripper. The more we read it, the more it connected ~ their/there ~ the intimate connection with all people and all places...



jack >>