31 October 2007


Tonight I experienced my first earthquake! I was sitting at my computer desk in my room, about to get up and get some food from a restaurant around the corner when I started to feel a rumble. At first I was thinking to myself that someone had their bass up way too loud, but then I realized that there was no music. I got a little scared and stood up, looked out my window, and everything on my street was shaking. The shaking got a little more violent and the house started creaking and the windows rattled. After about 10 seconds, everything stopped shaking and people started running out of their houses into the street, some yelling, a few crying, and almost everyone saying "was that an earthquake?".

My cell phone didn't work for about 10 minutes after the quake, but I was able to get online and instant message Daniel. The news says it was a 5.6 magnitude quake and no major damage has been reported, so all is good. All in all, an interesting and thankfully not too scary introduction to California earthquakes.

28 October 2007


I went to the sports bar in town that I've been watching all of the South Florida Bulls games in, but long story short, the game was not playing on ABC in San Francisco... it was regional coverage for Florida and New England only. And to top it off, they lost the game! It's a good thing I'm not into sports that much. (I keep telling myself that :)

After my non-watching of the game was over, I was walking past City Hall where the end of a anti-war protest was happening and snapped this photo. There were some musicians playing some songs, so I stood around for a few and listened. The protest atmosphere also seemed to bring out a lot of crazies, too. There were 9/11 conspiracy theorists, PETA vegan proselytizers (complete with photos of dead mutilated animals), and general far-far-far-left-wing demonstrators. At least it was entertaining!

26 October 2007

Bruce Lee Versus the Superheroes

On Saturday I was hanging out in North Beach (the Italian area of town) with some Scandinavian (each to varying degrees) friends. (Man, that's a lot of parentheses!) Anyway, as we are looking for a nice cafe to eat at, we pass by Washington Square Park and encounter a huge game of capture the flag happening, but with the twist that the two sides are each dressed up as, respectively, Bruce Lee and superheroes. This is the kind of crazy thing that seems to almost be common place in San Francisco. Why not?

24 October 2007

Pictures of My House

Okay, here are some pictures of the inside of my place that I've been promising everybody. As you can see, my room is pretty empty right now. I'm still looking for a desk and a chest of drawers, then I need a TV and DVD player... I think I'm going to try to get most of those things this weekend.


Living Room:

View out my window:

My room:

Also my room:

21 October 2007

IKEA, Goodbye Hat, City Hall

Yesterday my friend Melissa and I took a trip to IKEA, the Swedish furniture store, to go shopping for stuff for both of our apartments, since we both are moving into our places this weekend. She got tons of stuff, including tables, chairs, dishes, utensils, etc., but I didn't find much stuff that seemed to really fit in my new place. IKEA is more aimed at the ultra-modern look, but my whole apartment has a very classic Victorian feel to it, so I think that look wouldn't fit very well. I did get a few things like a comforter, hangers, and a desk chair, though.

Unfortunately, somewhere in the multi-level maze of the store, I also lost my San Francisco Giants hat that I bought when I was visiting the city last month. Here is the last picture I took with the hat-- me standing in front of San Francisco's amazing City Hall, which is actually taller than the United States Capitol Building:

18 October 2007

My New Place

Today I went to the DMV and got my new California drivers license... next step will be signing up for either City CarShare or ZipCar. Both are services that allow you to rent a car for hours at a time, instead of the days at a time of traditional car rental companies. This seems to be the solution most people without a car in the city use. My cousin uses City CarShare and my friend Melissa uses ZipCar, so I'm not really sure which one to get, but it looks like City CarShare has a no cost trial period to start, so I might go with that.

In other news, I snapped this photo of my new place, the beige building in the center. My room is the bay window on the second floor, partially obscured by the tree.

Home At Last

It looks like I have a place to live. I will be living in an old Victorian flat in the Haight-Ashbury district (the formerly hippie area of the city; see picture of area above) with two roommates. I was kind of looking forward to having my own place, but I like the idea of saving a little cash at first. Plus, it is a month-to-month lease, so even if I don't like it, I won't be stuck there for a long time. Maybe once I have a better idea of what part of the city I want to live in, I will get a place of my own.

15 October 2007

Golden Gate Park

I visited the de Young Museum in Golden Gate Park yesterday. I took this shot from the observation deck, overlooking the northern part of the bay. Yesterday and today have been sunny and cool (high in the 60s), so they were great days for strolling around the wild outdoors of the park. Golden Gate Park is basically the same rectangular shape as Central Park in New York, but turned on its side. Besides a few museums, the Conservatory of Flowers is there-- a Victorian age greenhouse. They were showing an exhibit on carnivorous plants there, and I got this pic of some venus flytraps:

12 October 2007

Narrowing Down the Search

My cousin and I went through postings on Craigslist (online classifieds) this morning. She helped me narrow down the areas that are good to live in. There are so many postings for rooms throughout the city that it can be overwhelming to go through them all. By choosing between a few areas to look through, I can focus on the best ones and live in an area with an interesting neighborhood.

Yesterday I took a walk through downtown and snapped this shot at the famous TransAmerica pyramid. It's the tallest building in the city and pretty much defines the skyline here.

11 October 2007

The View

Everywhere you walk in the city you end up seeing some amazing view. This picture is a block from my cousin Mary's place where I've been staying. This is pretty much a typical view. I can't imagine these kind of sights ever getting boring.

I think I have decided on finding a temporary place for right now and then finding a roommate. It is so much cheaper to get a roommate and that way I have time to really find out where in the city I want to live. My days so far have consisted mainly of me sitting around in cafes sipping tea, cappuccinos, or hot apple cider while surfing Craigslist to find somewhere to live.

In the early mornings (6am) my cousin and I walk for an hour or so through the streets and up hills. You don't even have to run to get a good workout if you are walking in a hilly part of town.

09 October 2007

Flight Over

I flew from Atlanta to San Francisco on Tuesday. It was a long flight, but on the way over we crossed right over the Grand Canyon, so I got an amazing view.

When I arrived, my cousin Mary picked me up at the airport. We had not seen each other in 12 years, but we get along really well. I am really grateful that she is letting me stay at her place for a few days until I find something more permanent. I have started the apartment search, but right now I am pondering between getting my own place and paying a lot of money or getting a roommate and paying... well, still a lot of money, but less.