Saturday, October 1, 2011

Hardly Strictly North Beach

One thing I like about living in North Beach is I can get anywhere in San Francisco pretty easily from here, as long as I'm not driving a car. Buses pass by Washington Square every five minutes--the 30-Stockton, the 45-Union, the 8x-Bayshore Express--and if we walk down to Broadway or beyond that to Market, we can hop on virtually every bus in town.

That means when my friend calls to say her son is playing cello in a Russian band at an art show opening in the Mission district, we can spontaneously decide to go. Ace and I walked down to Broadway and caught the 12-Folsom to see this fun performance at the Bethany Senior Center on Capp Street after work Friday night.

Leo's Russian band playing at the Bethany Senior Center.

Then today, we walked down to Market and caught the 5-Fulton to meet friends at the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass festival in Golden Gate Park. This was my first time. On the bus over, which was crammed with people on their way to the free festival, I learned that one mega-rich man pays for the whole thing--Warren Hellman. Here's a clip of his band: the Wronglers. As you can see, in the morning there was room to move around.

The Wronglers playing on Rooster Stage, one of six set up in Golden Gate Park for Hardly Strictly Bluegrass.

But by the time Merle Haggard and Kris Kristofferson started playing in the afternoon on Star Stage, the crowd was packed in tight.

Merle Haggard on the Star Stage in the afternoon. Someone compliments my hat part way through this clip. :)

Much as I liked the music, I bailed out early to escape the crowd. I got off the bus on Market Street just in time to see this small group shouting "Occupy Wall Street" march past.

A small band of "Occupy Wall Street" protestors marches down Market Street.

Back in North Beach, the hustle bustle of my new neighborhood seemed peaceful and calm in comparison to the festival.

Buskers playing in the neighborhood.

And back in the flat, I was glad to take my shoes off and put my feet up. It was a good day.

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