November 22 was a day to play tourist in our own back yard. We had reservations to see the Diego Rivera exhibit at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. We also included a visit to Salesforce Park, an amazing park situated 70 feet in the air and spanning four blocks.
Our outing started with a short drive to the El Cerrito Plaza BART Station. We were concerned about parking, but when we got to the station at 11 a.m., there was an abundance of empty parking slots. We rode the train into the city and got off at Montgomery Station. It was noon when we exited the BART station. Downtown San Francisco was like a ghost town. There were very few people and many of the restaurants were closed. We walked the short distance to SFMOMA and headed to Café 5 on the fifth floor.
We both ordered the Chicken and Cilantro soup and then found a table outside in the Jean and James Douglas Family Sculpture Garden. One of the gingko trees was in full fall display and the “Love” sculpture seemed to be calling me. I’m hearing “can’t buy me love,” by the Beatles.
The soup was delicious, although it was a bit tepid by the time it reached us. Our tickets for the Diego Rivera exhibit were for 2 p.m. so we had some time to explore the museum. The Oculus Tunnel by Olafur Eliasson was fun.
Then it was time to explore the Diego Rivera exhibit. I was able to pull up the audio tour on my iPhone and listen to the discussion about Rivera’s work. My hearing aids act as wireless earbud, which makes for easy listening. While I was aware of some of Rivera’s work, I had forgotten about his involvement with communism and the influence he had on the art world. It is quite an extensive display and well worth a visit.
One of the pieces on display is the Pan American Unity mural which is huge. I thought it would be interesting to see if I could photograph it in sections and stitch the sections together. My effort worked better than I had imagined, although I ended up losing some of the top and bottom of the work.
From SFMOMA we walked to the Salesforce Transit Center where we found our way up to the park, home to 600 trees and 16,000 plants arranged in 13 different ecological zones. I was intrigued with the “Bus Fountain” that dances to the movement of the busses on the lower level.
Playing tourist in our own back yard was fun. Sometimes we forget how much there is to see and enjoy here. We’re making a list of more things to do locally so stay tuned. In the meantime, feel free to view more photos online.
On the afternoon of July 13 we arrived in Mancos, where we spent the night camping in Kayla’s driveway. We stopped at a liquor store in Mancos to get a bottle of wine to share with dinner. I had to capture a photo of this mural on the side of the liquor store. Kaya is a professional cook and dinner was scrumptious. Here’s a photo of Kayla harvesting some greens for dinner. You can see our camper in the background. Then it was on to Angel Fire. Our drive took us through Durango, Pagosa Springs, Chama and on to Angel Fire. Check out the Stick Library for dog lovers in Pagosa Springs.
In Angel Fire we spent three nights at the Enchanted Circle Campground. The campsite was on a secluded knoll at a private ranch. Joann found this camp through Hipcamp. Given the wide-open space I decided to put the drone in the air to capture a view of our campsite. The site was perfect for our needs, quiet, secluded, and with open skies. One evening a few of the ranch horses decided to check out what was cooking.
Of course, our reason for being in Angel Fire was to attend the Sundt Family Reunion. Reunion activities included a picnic dinner on the C & S Cattle Company Ranch, a 130,000-acre spread, and browsing through family scrap books. The family is divided up into 12 “tribes” with each tribe having its own scrapbook. The tribes represent the children of MM Sundt. We had 110 people including 3 family members from Norway. As you can see, the scrapbooks are huge and chock full of photos and memorabilia. So much fun to browse through.
Many of the family members are ranchers and, being cowboys, they know how to spin a yarn. The family dinner was not shy for storytellers, with various brothers, uncles, and nephews correcting each other and embellishing the stories. There’s even a bear story where it took 40 years for the campers that were spooked by a bear to learn that it wasn’t a real bear. You can see more photos in an online gallery.
A few days ago I found myself in downtown Oakland. I haven’t been in downtown Oakland since the pandemic had us sheltering in place. I was surprised at all the murals on the sides of buildings. It took me a minute to realize that the murals were all on boarded up store fronts. Where there were once glass store fronts there were now murals.
Many of the store fronts in Oakland were boarded up during the unrest in the spring of 2020. Walking up and down a few blocks of Franklin Street seemed like being in an outdoor museum, with a lesson on current events mixed with the creativity and the will of people to adapt.
Here are six images I captured in the few minutes I had to walk a few blocks. You can view additional images here.