Everybody needs a day that’s just about them. Birthdays don’t count – people see that coming. You need one of those great, unexpected my days, one that is delicious because you spring it on people.
OK, mine wasn’t all that spontaneous. I spent my Sunday afternoon two Sundays ago, and almost all of last weekend, helping Jodi with her public lecture at Sonoma State University last Monday. I like helping Jodi with things like that, but for anyone who has ever had to work on a public lecture the process is extremely draining.It was draining for Jodi and draining for me, who tried to help her out by listening to practice talks – three of them in 48 hours. Jodi promised that she’d give me back a weekend this weekend, that it could be all mine to do whatever I wanted.
I think she’d thought I’d just want to lie around and do nothing. Nah. Too easy. Instead, I did something I’ve wanted to do for years – I crossed every bridge spanning the San Francisco Bay.
While the day was about the space between the lines, the poem itself did have lines. We started out going to IKEA for Swedish meatballs. I know – that sounds insane. But I am a sucker for Swedish meatballs. As you can tell, I also enjoyed a delicious cup of coffee. Oh coffee. Can you do any wrong?
Afterward, we set off on 84 east across the Dumbarton Bridge, and exited into the Coyote Hills. These hills are a park on the eastern side of the bay, affording to those happy to climb them an unmatched view of all points on the South Bay and all the way up to San Francisco and Oakland. The day was blue and cool and sunny, with just the right amount of wind. We hiked about three of the hills, took a ton of pictures, and looped back on the main road past ruddy-colored ducks and Canadian geese.
We set off north on 880 and then cut west on 92 across the San Mateo bridge. This took us to the Hillsdale Mall, where I enjoyed a leisurely stroll through the Apple store (and Jodi decided the iPod shuffle was about the dumbest thing she’d ever seen).
After a quick snack at the food court (and a lot of lemonade), we set off north on 101 to 80 east, across the Bay Bridge. Braving stop-and-go traffic in Berkeley, we diverted off onto 580 west across the Richmond bridge. We passed a tangle of refineries and storage tanks, crossed the bridge (right past the exit for San Quentin!), and got onto 101N.
After dinner in Petaluma, we headed back south on 101, cross the Golden Gate bridge, and then headed home. It was a great day, with great weather and a lot of different activities. Enjoy these shots of the bridges, and a panorama from the top of the Coyote Hills.