Tuesday, July 12, 2011

dueling oyster (photos)

Yesterday's trip to San Francisco was nothing short of spectacular. I love going into that city. I am energized by everything I see; the hustle and bustle of buses, trolley's, people rushing up and down the streets, intent on business or mischief. I think often about living in a big city, about all it's treasures and pleasures but I may have lived in a small town too long to make the adjustment to such excitement! I checked the weather; cold. So I exchanged my Valley-appropriate linens for wool pants, two sweaters, a jacket and scarf. I needed it all. I got on the train at 8:45, got my coffee and a seat and settled in for a nice ride. The sun was shining, the sky was blue, the fields were abloom with sunflowers taking their early morning hit. Whoa! What happened here, around Suisun?

And Vallejo?

Oh yes, I forgot. It's mid-summer in coastal Northern California. The train rolled into the gloom and fog, leaving the sunshine behind. In Emeryville I transferred to the Amtrak bus that took me into the city and right to the Ferry Building where I was to meet up with Mary Ann and Ginger. I was a bit early so I checked out the designer food shops and various cafes. Such choices! Pretty soon the other two arrived and we adjourned to The Slanted Door, a Vietnamese restaurant, for lunch. We got a front row booth with a great view of the water and the Bay Bridge. Around noon a bit of blue sky appeared; a good omen.

First course for MA and me was raw oysters. Heaven.

This is NOT a good photo.

She took some that are much better. (I have it on my list to buy a new camera; this one is five years old and was probably out of date when I bought it.) Next dishes were a tasty, crunchy shredded cabbage and jicama salad and a platter of sweet corn, off the cob. Big kernels. Very tender. Lastly came a puffy crepe filled with tiny shrimp and something crunchy, too. Maybe bean sprouts. The three of us polished off every bite. Lots of catching up, sharing news of folks we knew back when. After a couple of hours of doing this we strolled around the Marketplace a bit and then the two of them left, via Bart, MA to her Casa Verde in Bernal Heights and Ginger back to Pleasanton. My bus wasn't due for awhile ~ you have to get back on the return bus at the same spot you got off ~ so I did a bit of shopping. Bought two gorgeous loaves of bread at the Acme Bakery, some goodies at Sur La Table, and then, while browsing, stumbled on this Mother Lode of oilcloth bags. If I can find some heavy webbing to use for handles, one or two will join my collection of shopping bags.

Then I sat for awhile and watched the passing parade. These two young women in their Eiffel Tower heels stood around chatting. Just looking at their feet made mine cramp up. As I contemplated my comfy Fisherman sandals I reminded myself that, at one time in my life, I, too, risked lethal foot problems by wearing spike heels.

Soon it was time to get back on the bus to the East Bay, then onto the train for the ride home. By now the sun was shining but it was still quite cold; I think it got up to 59ยบ in SF yeterday. Easy ride home, reading all the way. Mr. C was at the station to pick me up. It was a lovely day. I hope we can do it again.


Alexandra said...

Wonderful! You sound so in your element and Oh the oysters and Oh the oilcloth, fab from start to finish!

mary ann said...

it was a delight ~ thanks for coming to our cold city...