The following program blog post is dedicated to the city and people of San
Francisco, who may not know it but they are beautiful, and so is their city.
This is a very personal song blog post, so if the viewer cannot understand it,
particularly those of you who are European residents, save up all your bread
and fly Translove Airways to San Francisco, USA. Then maybe you’ll
understand the song post. It will be worth it. If not for the sake of this
song post, but for the sake of your own peace of mind.
-San Franciscan Nights, The Animals
I shouldn’t say anything else about my return and final departure from that perfect city, but when I’m old and rereading this blog while drooling into whatever weird food they feed old people in the future, that intro by Eric Burdon won’t mean shit to me, so I’ll go on.
Chelsea and I decided to ditch our fancy hotel room for the last night so that she could spend more time having a San Francisco experience. Except then she just stayed in and packed while I escorted my host Daniel and his uber bro roommate to a show at The Bottom of the Hill. After spending a week with my loving, wonderful sister, I needed some time thrashing around at a punk show. I rarely dance on the East Coast unless I really like the band, but I was busting out some ‘dancing alone in my bedroom’ style moves at this show and it felt great. Or it felt great until I looked around and realized that I was one of the oldest people at the show and certainly the oldest one dancing. I then remembered going to punk shows as an 18 year old and thinking ‘aww look at that older lady dancing,’ well fuck it, it still felt great.
The next day we drove to the Golden Gate Bridge, this is me at the Golden Gate Bridge! Wow, what a magnificent structure. It was very exciting to SEE the Golden Gate Bridge! 😦 whatevs.
My last two days in San Francisco were insanely busy and mostly a total blur but they were wonderful. The highlights: a hive party and a sensory deprivation tank.
They call the sensory deprivation tank “floating” so it sounds less like a medieval torture instrument and more like a place you’d want to drop $60 (thanks Daniel, xo) I’m going to preface this by saying I’m extremely claustrophobic, ever since the time Chelsea and I were playing hide and seek and she thought it would be more fun to lock me in my hiding spot (the closet) than actually play the game. But hey, this trip is all about testing myself, yeah?
I was definitely freaking out a little as we were getting a tour of the place but then hopped right in. There’s less than a foot of water in the tank, which is big enough for me to just about go into Vitruvian man-pose but not much larger. The water has 1,000 pounds of salt dissolved in it so your body floats, if you let it, and eventually I did let my head fall back to be supported by the water (that was definitely the hardest part!) Unfortunately my ears are stupid. You have to wear earplugs and mine kept popping out, that familiar annoyance from the brief period where I was still regularly going to punk concerts but had already begun worrying about the eventual decline of my body. So anyway, my meditative experience was totally spoiled by having to get up and try to reinsert new earplugs every five minutes. I went through about ten, the top of my tank looked like a little earplug graveyard. Still, I can vouch that doing Pilates while floating is pretty awesome.
When we got back to the hive we found out there was a “going away to Portland” party planned for that night. How sweet! Sure, one of the hive residents happened to be moving to Portland that week as well, but I went ahead and pretended that the elaborate affair was to commemorate my departure from San Francisco. I had a 7am flight to Portland the next day (don’t get me started on the carbon footprint thing, I was forced into this decision by the incompetence of Amtrak), so I made the excellent decision to not go to sleep. This hive party more than made up for the fact that I was all but in a coma during their bash on the 4th: a band trying desperately to do decent Beatles covers, puking twenty-year-old tech moguls, a particularly exciting power outage, and a man named Andy with bleached blonde stiff hair and a gold jacket who was trying far too hard to look like Warhol and my god, why would you? When my cab rolled up at 5 I was totally not mentally prepared to leave.
Sometimes my roommate gets desperately intoxicated and blasts the Journey song about his city by the bay, (his third home after Ethiopia and Rome). He sits there with a drink and a joint and sings along or hums and cries. I’ve never been able to take Journey seriously, nor can I take my roommate seriously when he does this but I have a suspicion that next time he pulls that in my presence I’m going to pour myself some Jack and have a good cry with him.