San Francisco Part 2
It took a few days, and I really shouldn’t have been surprised, but it is San Francisco the original home of the hippie culture so it came as a shock when we woke up one morning to a man pounding on our door. He refused to tell us his name, calling himself “The Resident” and demanded that we leave the area, because our presence made “people like us come around this area and think they can stay”. Zoe cursed him up one way and down the other at that statement, and he retaliated by calling the cops who left us a ticket (we had gone to Haight st by the time they arrived) claiming that we were illegally parked by being larger than the size restriction for vehicle parking in the area- which we had specifically measured to be certain wasn’t the case. We are contesting it, but it does go to show how unwelcome travelers are, even in a place notorious for their culture.
We moved to another street, had the cops called on us there again, and were able to stay after Aaron showed off some of his knives and artwork to the very understanding officer who was just happy we weren’t actually causing trouble, and after that the residents of the area seemed to be just fine. But nevertheless, as we noticed more travelers showing up, preparing for the 4-20 fest and a bunch of big hippie bands coming into the area for shows, we decided that we’d best just head to the woods rather than dealing with all the potential fallout of being in a big city for that kind of potentially chaotic event. Also, despite all our time in the park and streets, we were unable to make any money vending, seems to be just too much going on in general. For our last night in town we went out to the Blue Front Cafe’, a little sandwich and gyro deli that was absolutely the best food I’ve had at a restaurant in quite a while. If you are on Haight st, this is the place to go- meat, vegetarian and vegan options, most around $10-13 and large enough to split. I got an eggplant pesto sandwich, perfectly made, that was also a massively filling lunch the next day. We stayed out late, drank, hung out with all the new friends, and a surprisingly number of people we already knew from New Mexico( there are a lot of Nm people escaping to Cali, and vice versa), generally enjoying the outgoing nightlife of Haight st and drinking in the last views of shops filled with tie-dye, festival wear, pipes, and anarchist books among many other things.
But it was time to head north, to start on the main purpose of the trip anyway: finding land to build an off the grid homestead. So the first night we didn’t go far (we are stopping generally town to town from here out to explore more throughly for local culture to see if we want to purchase in the area) and stayed in Ukiah, which is an adorable little hippie town, and also a great place to get gas if you are doing a tip up the coast. The locals has already shown themselves to be very open and welcoming, and there is very little corporate influence, instead there are dozens of little vegetarian, vegan and raw restaurants and boutique handmade shops all along the main street through town. They even have a Saturday morning Farmer’s Market community program that matches the first $15 dollars of food stamps spent dollar for dollar, so you can get $30 worth of food for $15 on your food stamps. Good for the local farmers and the hungry, what a great idea! Frankly, I think it has more of the liberal and alternative hippie culture flavor than San Fran now has with it’s burgeoning yuppie influence, though San Fran still takes the cake for style in a thousand different ways. Next, the Redwoods!!
Since we didn’t have a camera to take pictures ourselves, here are some links to the best films about the beautiful San Francisco:
Or if you’re as much a bookworm as I am:
And if you want some background about this impressively historical place: