I Ferry the Bay. I Walk the City.

I love hiking the Headlands. I miss walking the city.

The Ferry Building is brilliantly lit behind me, as the Bay Bridge marks an even more brilliant light behind it. Market Street is alive with tourists who’ve been here for the day looking wide-eyed and open-eared, office workers getting ready for happy hour, street vendors and street hustlers trying to make a buck and vagrants extending their hands for donations. Birds poop on the sidewalks while eating every morsel of waste left by the giants they walk among. Construction has me veering from this way to that way, as I feel a little bit of this and a little bit of that. All the while, the city lights mark my way through neverland.

In my head, Bruce Springsteen’s lovely and epic nine-minute, 55-second “New York City Serenade” plays a loop in my head, replacing the Big Apple with the City by the Bay as my thoughts sync with my walk.

I love my idyllic life hiking and writing and painting among the hills of Sausalito as well as the varied landscapes of Marin County. But I love the city too, its bustle of frenetic energy like anything could and would and should happen, always ready and willing to expect the most unexpected. And if it doesn’t happen, I would be a bit disappointed. I just realized that as I am writing this, my hands grip my phone tighter than normal, half expecting someone to take it and run. I’m not as fast as I once was in the sixth grade when I wore in my young mind special shoes that allowed me to run faster than anyone ever (so much so that an older bully once forced me to race one of his friends and as the finish line approached sensing I would win, violently tripped me, ripping my corduroy pants at my bloodied knees, the scars and the recurring pain years later still a part of my life. But I digress).

San Francisco is a beautiful city with its rolling hills, the colourful facades of its residential homes, the waters of the bay around it, the bridges through it, and the uniquely brilliant and vibrant sunrises and sunsets, but parts of it is also a wonderfully dirty city as well, with all the stark stankiness you’d expect from a city, the dirtiness I am happily experiencing this very moment in between looking at my phone screen writing and looking up at the sky and skyscrapers.

I decided to take the Sausalito ferry mesmerized by the sunset behind Alcatraz, the Golden Gate, and Sausalito on this particular Friday night, dropping me off at the Ferry Building, walking another mile because tonight was a magnificent night for a walk to the Park Central Hotel, where my friends were visiting.

And that’s when my night began.

Go Adventure. Go Travel. Go Live.

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