When Ace suggested moving back to San Francisco after 20 years plus in the suburbs, I was afraid. And the first night I spent in our rented flat in North Beach, I cried. I felt disconnected from my children, from the comfortable home where they grew up. I could hear the people in the flat next door, walking up and down their hallway. I wasn't sure of my boundaries. Who was I supposed to become?
But just a few days later, the fog lifted: No one knew me. No one watched me. No one judged me in the City. That awful crush of conformity that permeated my life in suburbia was gone. I was free to be anything--everything--I wanted. I was free!
Now we're coming up on our fourth year in San Francisco, and I don't ever want to go back. I want to claim San Francisco as my own, to take her in my arms and devour her, in all her lush and sere and dark deliciousness. She is mine, this city where we met and married, where my grandmother, my mother, and my three children were born. She is mine for the taking.
~At an Easter bonnet contest in Golden Gate Park.