Pips on Washington Square, Francisco Street

Pips on Washington Square
I’m quickly becoming a regular at this print shop. It’s got an amazing view of Columbus and Filbert, next to St. Peter and Paul church. For some reason I’m always at the print shop right before the post office closes, and the crossing guard is on full duty. That is a very challenging corner: Lots of buses, rush hour, kids, grown-ups doing the walk-commute, tourists in posses standing in the middle of sidewalks oblivious to traffic signals. Probably most interesting and less desireable corner for crossing-guards.

The other day about 500 copies of a funeral pamphlet for a Chinese woman were getting printed and collated (color!). The guy who was working there, the chatty one, was impressed that I could translate the headline: “Our Grandmother”. Awwwww…

Francisco Street on Russian Hill
I went for a night walk and turned down Francisco street, from the North Beach side of Russian Hill (south?) because it smelled good. How often do we lead with our nose? All of North Beach smells great, by the way. Garlic, to me, is a great smell. Mildew and sea water, the smell of Seattle, was never so hot. Sushi just doesn’t smell (if it’s good) and that was the predominant cuisine there. Yes, I compare Seattle and SF constantly in my head.

Anyways, back to Francisco. You turn up by the side of Bimbo’s- that’s where the box office is for sure– and climb a not so steep grade for about two blocks. I think it’s Mock Orange (“you’re not an orange, na na na na na”) that has that amazing smell, like a not so sweet night blooming jasmine. Actually, since I realized it’s not the time of the year for Mock Orange to blossom, maybe it was night blooming jessamine (or jasmine, not sure). So much for a sense of authority in blog writing. I could tell from the top of the 2nd block that there was a guy on the stair — a warning to all women walking alone– and yet he left, so I walked up there. There’s funny graffiti scrawled there but I can’t remember it. It’s a little set of steps, not major, and when I got to the top, there were two couples up there admiring the view of Coit Tower and Telegraph Hill. A house on the left, thanks to the author of Stairwalks of San Francisco, was built entirely of ship timbers. More nice jasmine along the garden wall up on the right. Funny, houses on the hills don’t keep to the security standards of those in low lying valleys in San Francisco. A friend who lives on the hill told me about this, that criminals and ne’er do wells just don’t climb hills. So you are relatively at peace (except for the graffiti, I guess) with having cute little garden gates and low walls. Random note: woman moving boxes into a Subaru station wagon with big markings on them that said “Do Not Take From Asylum” and a name on it like “KRAMER.”

Walked down to Hyde, turned a right at the freaky covered water department reservoir. How could such prime real estate be underutilized? Build a better cover! Put a rec area or basketball court on top! Turn it into a dog run! Geesh.

Friend co-owns a burrito shop on North Point that is never open. Also he said there was some crime near there. It’s next to the official Galileo High bus stop, with the most brightly lit and well-stocked AM/PM in San Francisco.