Friday, February 1, 2013

San Francisco 2013

We had a wonderful trip to San Francisco despite having some kind of crud most of the time we were there.  Lots of Afrin and Advil got us through.   We left home at 3 am to catch a 6 am flight out of PWM and arrived in San Francisco around noontime.  Took a van to the hotel, dropped off our bags and went walking around Fisherman's Wharf until our room was ready.  Stopped for some delicious spicy shrimp and ate outside in our shirtsleeves listening to some live music across the street and drinking in all the local flavor.  Freshened up in the room briefly and then took a town car over to Sweetwater Music Hall (owned by Bob Weir) in Mill Valley for a night of beat poetry.  And what a night it was!  Jerry Nicosia hosted the night with poets and story tellers from near and far including Al Hinkle (aka Ed Dunkel from On The Road), Ramblin Jack Elliot, Joanna McClure, Wavy Gravy, and many, many more.

Wavy Gravy getting down 

Al Hinkle telling great Kerouac and Dean Cassady stories.

Joanna McClure reading her poetry

Jerry Nicosia reading poetry
Jerry Nicosia

We stayed the night at Jerry's house and he took us back to the city around noontime on Wednesday.  We took quick showers and met up with Jason and Adri and went walking.  Unfortunately, having been up about 24 hours the previous day kind of caught up to us and we ended up back in our room by 5, and asleep by 7.  I woke up about 3 am drenched in feverish sweat and I felt like a new woman when I woke up at 9 am.  We had a leisurely breakfast at the hotel with Jason and then took showers and headed down Columbus Street to the North Beach area.  Stopped en route at a sweet little Italian coffee shop and split a cannoli and iced mocha with Rick and then continued until we reached The Beat Museum.  Rick introduced himself to the owner, Jerry Cimino, who knew Rick from his book and blog, and he gave us all free tickets.  We took photos of ourselves in the 49 Hudson that was used in filming the recent On The Road movie.

After an hour touring the museum and talking with Jerry we headed across the street to Vesuvio's for a beverage.  

Janet, the bartender and one of the owners of Vesuvio's recommended Coppola's for lunch so that's where we headed.  

Owned by Francis Ford Coppola, the place is loaded with great movie photos and the pizza was quite delicious.  

We hailed a cab for a quick trip back to the hotel to get ready for the big event - Rick's participation on a panel at the San Francisco Public Library to talk about the beats in anticipation of the San Francisco release of the On The Road movie.  Unfortunately, the powers that be decided not to fully release the movie yet but that didn't put a damper on things.  Every seat in the house was taken and there were crowds standing in the back.

Actor Peter Coyote, a dapper dresser, and poet Joanna McClure. 
About 275 people in attendance

..., Actor Peter Coyote, Joanna McClure, Jerry Nicosia, Brad Parker, and Rick Dale.
Dinner at The First Italian or something like that: Adri, Penney, Brad, Jerry, Rick, Me, Allie, and Jason.

Friday morning we walked down Columbus a little way and found a sweet little place for breakfast before catching buses over to Haight Ashbury.  We browsed the stores, watched the local flavor, and had a delicious lunch at Cha Cha Cha's.  Nice people all around.  And some rather unique ones, as you'd expect at the Haight.

We were up early the next morning to share a taxi to the airport with Jason and Adri for the long trip home.  Flights were stuffy and crowded but all on time and without incident.  Overall a fabulous time.   Hope for an opportunity to return soon.