Monday, December 19, 2011

San Francisco, Here We Are...Again!

Home Again!

We have moved into our temporary furnished flat in Noe Valley.  And it is so good to be home!

We decided to abandon our plan to live in New York for a couple of years.  This is for a number of reasons, one of which is that if we stay here, then we foresee one more moving day in the future.  I will still do research in New York, Boston, and Washington, but in multiple trips over the next couple of years.  The first one will be to New York for four weeks beginning in late April.  It will cost more, but after sixteen months as quasi-nomads, we are ready to settle down again.  We got very lucky in our apartment search.  We rented a flat in Noe Valley not far from where we are now.  If you are not familiar with the terminology here, "flat" doesn't mean "apartment" as such.  Here, a flat is a dwelling consisting of an entire floor of a residence building.  So we have a 3 bedroom, 2 bath floor which is above another flat and a combined garage at street level.  We get two parking spaces in that garage, lined up in tandem.  We move in on January 2.  Home!
Our new neighborhood is in this view from Twin Peaks toward the bay.

And of course, this marks the end of Walkabout 2010-2011.  We will write a closing entry to this blog after we settle down and distill our thoughts.  But an off-the-cuff thought of the moment, because we are often asked what was the best part of it?  Antarctica was in a class by itself.   I most enjoyed Cape Cod, Santiago de Chile, and our second stay in New York.  In a way, I am sorry that we won't be living in New York for those two years.  I hasten to add that overall, I still prefer Boston to New York and that I prefer San Francisco to either one, and to Paris and all the rest.  Looking back on it, I wish we had spent more time in Buenos Aires than we did.

It has been a fun year and a half in our lives, but we know that we will have as much fun in our future as we have just had.   Penny and I are lucky that way.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Home for the Holidays

Where did the time go?  Before we knew it, it was time for us once again to pack up and move along.  This time back to California, right back where we started from.  I got some more work done in the National Archives and the New York Public Library collections.

We went out to JFK airport using the car service that we have used before, giving ourselves plenty of time to get there.  A good idea in New York!  Of course, because we did that, there was practically no traffic and we had a long time at the terminal before boarding the flight to San Francisco.  Had we been on a tight schedule...well, you know what would have happened.

The flight was on time and Charlie met us at the airport with our car.  We went to get his car and then to stay in Oakland with Shawna, our niece.  On to Medford, Oregon, the next day.  David flew in from New York on Wednesday evening.

Priscilla and the family outdid themselves with the Thanksgiving banquet.  Twenty-nine adults and five children!

On Thursday, Penny and I go back to San Francisco for six weeks.  In a temporary apartment, in Noe Valley.  We no longer have our rented house in the Sunset.  Just our storage unit.  Since our plans have evolved and we are headed back to New York in late January, we will be spending a lot of time reorganizing our storage unit and getting out the things we want to take with us for the five weeks that we have given ourselves to find an apartment.  Think warm clothes.  We arranged the walkabout thus far, to be in places where it was warm. So my San Francisco sweater collection is mostly stored.  You get the idea. So much for endless summer!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

The City That Never Sleeps

We have very much enjoyed our time in New York so far.  It is hard to believe that it has already been three weeks.  The weather was quite warm when we got here, and then it turned cold.  There was even a snowstorm! But now it is warm again!

Halloween was a fun day.  We traipsed around Manhattans's Upper West Side.  Kids were out trick-or-treating and the businesses along Broadway and Amsterdam Avenue all had candy for them.  As it got later, the costumed children then went to houses.  Penny and I went to David and Louis's to help hand out candy.

This started out as a research visit to the New York Public Library.  But as I worked through archive and library catalogs on line, I realized that the sources in the Eastern United States for what started as a California history project are very extensive.  So Penny and I decided to move back east for a year and most likely two.  New York was the logical choice because the sources are in New York, Boston, and Washington.

So our five weeks here also became a prelude to the apartment search.  Penny has done a great deal of research on line, and so we arrived with a good base of knowledge.  It should work out well when we come back in late January.

I have been to the National Archives facility in New York, and also to the special collections of the New York Public Library.  Some success, and it helps to know where things are, what are the required protocols, and so on.

On November 11, we watched the Veterans Day Parade up Fifth Avenue.

And some pictures from our wanderings checking out neighborhoods: