Monday, September 5, 2022

San Francisco Simply --- Days 11/205, 206, 207

Walks/Lopes:  Hood, Presidio

Distances: 4.5 miles avg, small yogas

So, of course Ciwt's readers have heard about San Francisco's street people.  But probably you didn't know of some who share our streets in ways that put Ciwt in mind of the city that stole her heart in the 60's and where she's spent most of her life since.

It was a simple place.  People wore colorful, relaxed clothes and many sat in parks or sidewalk benches strumming guitars.  Others on their ways to Stinson Beach or Big Sur were usually kids of some sort - hippies, college students or grads - standing on the side of the roads hitchhiking.  It was peaceful, musical, (when not murderous or plain evil - think Patty Hearst, the Hillside Strangler).  There weren't many jobs of consequence.  East Coast investment houses and banks hadn't begun to take San Francisco seriously so the top executive positions were often held by scions who came in late, left for early martinis and dominoes at their clubs and stayed for the duration.  There was an optimistic good-hearted freedom to it all in the midst of lovely architecture and some of the most specular natural scenery in the world. Innocense.  Live and let live.  

Some of that is on display here and there these days of homeless and post(?) covid democratizing.  Take the guy who parks his motor coach containing and what appears to be all his possessions near the Trader Joe's Ciwt frequents.  In fact, his coach is a 1973 Millenium Falcon.  Ciwt knows this because he has printed the information on his rear bumper.  

Sadly, his beloved dog, Buddy or Baby Butt, died earlier this year which you learn by reading the sign on his front windshield.

And, you know what he did after he lost his "Bestest Baby Ever" on a Friday morning in April?  He started a sidewalk Community Garden.  He has named it Guerrilla Garden, dedicated it to the memory of all his departed dogs including Baby Butt,  supplied it with tools, dirt, water and an invitaion to all who are inclined to "get your hands dirty and dig in."  

When he first showed up several years ago, Ciwt was a bit uncomfortable, then came to pay little or no attention and more or less whisk by.  Then when he kept parking close to the same location and Ciwt saw him nearly every day, she began to notice that he actually kept his area neat as a pin; if there was ever any sidewalk sprawl, it was stuff he was reorganizing and cleaning. She also saw his beloved Baby Butt.  Now she enjoys seeing the potatoes, onions and other edibles grow in the community garden he has created.  And today, she saw him sitting on his bench in Guerilla Gardens and rhythmically beating drumsticks to a tune coming through his ear phones.  It seemed innocent, open-hearted and musical like those guitar players in the San Francisco parks years ago.

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