Posts Tagged ‘The Embarcadero’

We Were Talking

August 10, 2017

About you tonight.

Oh you were?

“Yeah, we were saying that you’re doing too much,” my friend said and gave me a hug.


Of course I’m doing too fucking much.

And I’m ok with it.

I am a busy woman.

But pockets of time present themselves to me and I get stuff done.

I managed to sneak in making a pot of soup in between a phone call, work, and covering my Wednesday night commitment.

I am good like that.

I also, wait for it, dropped off my paperwork to the school practicum office!

Killed two birds with one stone.

I had the mom ask me to take the oldest boy out on a solo adventure with me.

We went to the Exploratorium today down on the Embarcadero at Pier 15.

On the way, we swung into my school campus, rode, “the slowest elevator in the world,” according to my 7-year-old companion, and dropped off my evaluation to the woman who runs the practicum office.

We chatted a bit and it was nice to down load a little about my experiences and how it feels to be running with clients.

I have seven now.

My charge was as patient as a 7-year-old could be and after three minutes of chat I corralled him and we made our merry way to the FMarket trolley.

We also stopped in at the Peets Coffee across the street from my campus and I got a large nonfat latte and he got a steamed milk with whipped cream.

He was so cute.

It was adorable hanging out with him all afternoon.

When it’s just he and we have the best times.

We played all over the Exploratorium, the museum of science, art and human perception and had marvelous experiments and adventure and looked at all the things and played with all sorts of miraculous contraptions.

It really was great.

We ate lunch there and he ate most of my lunch because it was tastier and I happily shared and he cuddled with me hard and fell into a bit of a food coma and collapsed on my lap and hugged me and said, “scratch my back,” and I did and it was fabulous.

There’s nothing like a seven-year old boy snuggling on my lap to make me happy, he just loves me so much and it makes my heart super full.

He can be a total handful when he’s around his siblings, but one on one, oh my god, melt my heart.

He literally sat in my lap the entire way back.

We took the FMarket all the way into the Castro then hopped on the 24 bus and rode it to Church and 30th.

He’s a big fan of the Beatles and walking up the hill we sang Beatles songs and held hands.

Mostly “I Say Hello and You Say Goodbye,” over and over again.

I’m not much of a vocalist, I mean, I can sing, everyone can sing, but my little guy can really sing.

I was happy to hold my own and actually harmonize a bit with him.

And when I couldn’t hit the high notes, well, he did.

I feel pretty in love with the little guy and it was so nice to have the day with him.

We got back to the house a tiny bit before mom and his siblings and I got dinner going while he played Legos.

Dinner was pretty simple, I made his favorite dish, organic ground beef pan sautéed in good olive oil with garlic and onion, sea salt, rosemary, black pepper, and a bechamel sauce that I make right as the beef has browned up and then I put it over brown rice fusilli or whatever non-gluten pasta I wrangle up out of the pantry.

The boy loves it.

It’s amazing to watch him inhale it.

I love cooking.

It’s a nice perk to my job.

I know some nannies who would be horrified to have to cook, but I do really like it.

I love my family and I love making them dinner.

In fact, the mom told me that they, the kids, were excited to come back from their big trip and eat my food.

That was nice to hear.

The mom let me go a few minutes early and since I had dropped off the paperwork to my school I was able to slip home, do some practical stuff, eat a quick dinner, make a pot of soup and take a phone call before heading back out the door to my next gig.

I know I am busy and it was sweet to hear my friend and I looked at him and said, I get it, I do, I am busy and it’s a lot and yeah, I’m probably doing too much, but I don’t feel like I have much of a choice.

Although, that’s not necessarily true.

I could quit school and have oodles of free time.


I would just be a nanny.

And I want more.

I am too smart and too driven to just stop here.

I want this.

I have been groomed for it, or so it feels.

And yeah.

This last year of school is probably going to be full tilt boogie.


I know.

I know without any doubt.

That I will get through it.

I haven’t felt anxious at all about my schedule and the things I need to do.

It feels like it’s all falling right into place.

I can’t fuck it up.

I can’t manipulate it into happening.

If it’s supposed to happen it will.

I just get to show up today in the best way I know how and do whatever work is in front of me.

And yes.

When I can.

Well, yes, a girl will like to play.

And I shall.

No worries.

It’s all happening.

All the things.

All the.





Oh, yes, they are.

Thank God.


Dinner And

December 7, 2015

A movie?

A game of dominoes?



Hiding under my bed.


My birthday is coming up and I don’t want to think about.

Too many other things to think about.


Two weeks from today I will be in the air somewhere over the Atlantic flying towards Paris.

Like that.


And my up coming last weekend of school for this semester.

I am quite happy to report that I have done the majority of the work for my final project presentation.

I honed the presentation and the hand out that I am supposed to have for the class, as well as writing out my references in a bibliography APA style.


That was fun.

Which reminds me, I’m going to have to print this sucker out.


One more tiny detail to think about.

Maybe I can ask at work.


That’s happening next weekend and then the weekend following is off to Paris and Merry Christmas to me.

Standing in the way of that experience is the papers I will have to finish before heading out.


Better than the six it was after the last weekend of being school.

The other thing?

My birthday.

Friday, December 18th.

I will be working.

I will be at work until 8p.m.

Then what the hell do I do?

The things I would like to do aren’t open–Free Gold Watch closes at 7pm, so no pinball for me.

And the other place that does have some pinball that I wouldn’t mind playing is at a bar, and I am so not spending my birthday in a bar.

No thank you.

I have been ice skating on my birthday at the Embarcadero Center that was fun, not interested in Union Square at all, too crowded and the rink is much smaller.

But I’m not sure that I am going to feel up to ice skating after a full day at work, which will have been a full week a work, in addition to a full week of getting the papers done before I have to leave.

My papers are due the 22nd, but I won’t be here and I want to have them all wrapped up before I leave.

I figure the time that I normally take for reading in the morning will be devoted to doing the papers and I should be able to have them both done by the end of the week.

What will I feel like doing after a week like that?





Coffee, dinner, and movie.


Dinner and movie.

It’s the weekend that Star Wars opens and I am sure the theaters are going to be swamped.

And obviously Star Wars is already sold out everywhere.


There are other movies.


I am exploring theater options while I blog/think and I am not liking the looks of it.

Star Wars everywhere.

Not that I’m not interested in the movie, I am, but I am not certain I want to be in any theater that is playing it opening weekend.

Too many crowds.

I love a movie and have no problem going to one on my own, I used to love to do that when I was living in Nob Hill.

I would walk down to the AMC on Van Ness or I would go the other way, down through China Town and over to the Embarcadero Theater.

It was always a lovely walk there and back.

I took myself on many a date to the theaters while I lived there.


So maybe just dinner with friends.

I don’t have to make a big deal of it.

Or fuck.


I keep thinking it might be silly to just meet at Ritual on Valencia Street–bonus, it’s right next to where I work–and get coffees or lattes and just hang out.


Maybe dinner somewhere.

There certainly are no lack of places to dine in the Mission.

I’m a little torn.

Then again.

I could also just say screw doing something on my birthday and rather celebrate it with friends the next day.


I could do pinball at Free Gold Watch that Saturday, late afternoon, early evening.

Of course I may be wicked pre-occupied trying to get ready for the Paris trip, but it may be something silly and fun to do.

I am a bit flummoxed.

I called my best girl friend today and chatted and admitted I was feeling isolated.

“Grad school does that to you!” She said emphatically assuaging my feelings, “I know how you are feeling.”

And then she brought up my birthday, which just made me break into tears.

I have been assiduously avoiding the topic in my brain.

Now I’m back to thinking dinner after work on Friday.

I’m waffling.

I’m embarrassed to not know what I want.

Or to write what I want.

I didn’t enjoy my dinner out last year on my birthday.

I would like to do something different.

It might be fun to get a bunch of folks together and do sushi.

My brain hurts.

There are certain things I can spend lots of time thinking about, but my birthday is not one of them.

I really don’t want to do anything.


I really do.

Ah, the rub.

There’s not much I want to do right now.

I could use a foot rub.

How about that?

Or a hug.

A snuggle.

A shoulder to lean on.

I am, I admit, feeling lonely.

Though, not alone.

And the feeling didn’t devolve too badly this weekend, granted, yes, there were tears, the tears they do like to fall, but I did not get washed out by them, I did not fall to pieces, I did not.

I resolutely went for a walk around the neighborhood on a study break and made phone calls and connected.


Of course.

Is how I got on the topic of said birthday.

I just want to see some friendly faces and drink some coffee and hang out at a restaurant.

I think that’s it.

Pretty simple.

Pretty easy.

Now where the hell should I go?



Brown Paper Packages

December 22, 2014

Tied up with string.

These are a few of my favorite things.

“Upcycled” is how I like to think about it when I wrap my Christmas packages in brown paper deconstructed from SafeWay grocery bags and brown paper sacks from CVS Pharmacy.

I cut the bag up, pull the handles off, flip it inside out and wrap whatever present I have at hand that needs a spiffy new look to it.

I put a name tag or holiday tag on the package.

Then the piece de resistance, green jute string.

I also occasionally use fabric and ribbon remnants.

I have a little Christmas box and it was unearthed today.

I got my Christmas tree.

It’s definitely a Charlie Brown type of fella, but he’s got some style and panache and some adorable blue lights adorning him.





A Few of My Favorite Things

Tied up with String

Blue Christmas

Blue Christmas

And despite the fact that my Christmas tree has blue lights, it’s not a blue holiday for me this year.

I have someone to share it with and that’s first in some years.

I quite enjoyed wrapping up his presents while he lay napping on my bed this afternoon–poor bunny’s been sick.

He did rally like a trooper and helped me go to the Sloat Garden Center and get my tree.

I warned him that I was about to dork out.

I closely inspected all the trees, the pickings were far slimmer than I recalled from last year.  Then I realized that last year I had gotten my Christmas tree far earlier than this year.

That whole weekend trip to Alaska threw my schedule off.

And despite the decorations and the lights and the Christmas carol’s being sung, the stockings all hung by the chimney with care, it hasn’t felt like Christmas until about today.

I feel settled and at ease with what is happening with my father.

I got through my birthday, which, yes, though a day of celebration was such a surreal experience as it was the day I got the news about my father, plus it’s just a loaded day.

“Don’t have any expectations about anything,” I told myself.

Which is the best suggestion I can give myself at any time.

Expectations lead to resentments for me and the last thing I need on top of my already merry-go-round mind is some resentments about the expectations I have around the holidays.

And with a few years of having done this deal and been an orphan as such, although not really an orphan, I have done a few things for myself that speaks to good self-care and holiday joviality.

Last year I worked at half day on Christmas eve, then I rode the F-Market train down from the heart of the Castro to the Embarcadero and caught the last ferry from the terminal to Sausalito and then hopped off, walked a few yards, snapped some photographs, and hopped back on the ferry to San Francisco.

The year before I was in Paris and that was both monumentally mundane, as I helped a visiting friend locate a store open in Paris on Christmas Eve that could fax some paper work to her job, and unbearably magical–walking into Sacre Couer for midnight mass and the entire church is signing the first Noel in Latin.

Yeah, that’s not really a bad way to spend Christmas Eve.

The year prior I took myself out to the San Francisco Ballet and saw the Nutcracker for the first time.

I got all dressed up and took a cab.

I was unbearably homeless and lonely.

I was house sitting for a friend.

One of the sweetest gifts I got that year was a tiny black framed print in aquamarine that says: “Happy is a home that shelters a friend.”

I was pretty much a wreck that year, but tried to muster through it.

Of course in hindsight I can look back and see that I was being stripped down of all the things that I needed to let go of so that when the opportunity arose to go to Paris I was pretty much able to up and go.

The year prior to that I was living in Nob Hill.

And that was the first year that I allowed myself a Christmas tree.

I had a small studio and it overlooked the cable car line on Washington Street at Taylor.

The cable car guys would rumble by and certain operators would wave or flirt, or ask me what I was eating, my window really was just at eye level with the cable cars.

That year I was struck dumb with love and light and joy when I turned off the lights in my little studio and the Christmas lights on my tree twinkled and winked at me and the bulbs lit up the ornaments which cast Christmas colored shadows on the walls and ceilings.


Oh then.

A full cable car rattled by and all the passengers on the car were signing Christmas carols.

I felt my heart swell and the magic of Christmas kissed my forehead as I settled down for a long winter’s nap.

I can and do get a tiny bit sentimental and I think that’s ok.

There’s love and joy all year round in my life, but it doesn’t mean that I don’t want to celebrate and decorate and do up my own tiny little scene.

I have some Christmas goodies in the fridge to make a Christmas Eve dinner: warm spinach salad with bacon and Roquefort Blue Cheese, cherry tomatoes, and chopped apples; mini-rouladen–thin sliced black forest ham, slathered with a cream cheese and rolled around a dill pickle spear; asparagus with prosciutto, (I am now seeing a proliferation of pork products in my dinner I was not aware of until just now, ha), roasted Japanese sweet potato, and filet with some of that Blue Cheese reduced down and mixed with softened butter and fresh pressed garlic sautéed with baby Portobello mushrooms.


I like to cook.

Then  Christmas night dinner–caesar salad with grilled chicken and bacon, berries–strawberries and blackberries– and mixed cheeses, which I am going to do a little swing through ye olde BiRite tomorrow while on the way to the park with the boys, I’ll probably get my man a small Acme batard or sweet roll, a relish plate with marinated baby artichoke hearts, black olives, cornichons, deviled eggs with organic paprika, and yes, Virginia (ham is not on this menu), a duck.

I have not ever made duck before, but I am going to give it a go.

As I said, I like to cook, if you haven’t noticed from previous blogs and I am quietly thrilled to be able to make a few things for the man.

And have a tree.

And someone to hold my hand and snuggle with while I watch the lights twinkle in the dark.


Happy home for the holidays.

Happy indeed.

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