Saturday, 18 September 2010

More San Fran....

And now ladies and gents, I present ... the famously crooked section of Lombard Street! Amazing eh? And very pretty too, I hope you will agree. You may well recognise the location from a good few movies and shows, including What's Up Doc (a favourite of mine and Matty's). In the aforementioned film, there's a high speed car chase street down the ziggy zaggy street, however, in real life drivers are only permitted to drive down it at 5mph max! Much more sensible really... while we were there, the place was very popular with the tourists with people constantly snapping photos up and down the street. This led me to think what a pain in the a*se it must be to actually live in one of the houses there! A sight worth seeing, nevertheless.

Who's the blonde diva trying to get in on the action on the right? Honestly!

I love the bougainvillea growing on the side of this house on Lombard. SO pretty! It's very common in California and we also saw lots of it growing in the Hollywood hills. More on that later.

View from the top of the crooked street. That's San Francisco bay in the distance.

Just to prove I was actually there.

Me and my man, happy we made it to the top.

Now another well-known SF attraction: the Painted Ladies! Actually, to be precise the term "painted ladies" applies more generally to "Victorian and Edwardian houses and buildings painted in three or more colors that embellish or enhance their architectural details", but the most famous of these in SF is the row of six abodes you can see in the pic above, close to Alamo Square. Gorgeous, aren't they? Again they've featured in a lot of media, I recall Glenn Close jogging past the houses with her backpack in "Maxie" for instance (nice location in an otherwise pretty dire movie).

Up close and personal... again the place was overrun with sightseers, some of whom this time were even bolder. I spotted a group of German girls who went up to the doors and windows of the houses, even opening up letterboxes, trying to peer inside to see what was there! Ever so slightly invasive and rude. Similar to Lombard St, if I lived there I'd probably get wholeheartedly sick of the tourists and vacate to some back room in the house where I was invisible to all and sundry! Either that or go out all day.

Nice shot of us, once again proving we were there! Oddly enough I think there's a bit of a weird photoshop effect to this pic though which makes it look like the houses were stuck onto the background! We did go there, honest!

And here's us with lovely Matty and boyfriend Byron!

Yay for us! So good to visit all these places with residents Matty and Byron ... and great of them to drive us round!

And moving on: here comes Haight Ashbury! If you've never heard of it, it's a district of SF famous for "its role as a center of the 1960s hippie movement, a post-runner and closely associated offshoot of the Beat generation or beat movement" - now you know! Janis Joplin and Jimi Hendrix once resided there, at one point ... These days it's more gentrified but the counter-cultural influences are still in evidence ...
Loving the the aforementioned musicians...

It figures that wacky baccy would be available in the neighbourhood...

Here's me and Matty again ... you can't see it from the photo but we're sitting in a fabulous creperie called Squat and Gobble (!! interesting name - who masterminded that one?!) which he took us to. Good choice Mr Stanfield!

Peace man! Now let's get nicely stoned...okay perhaps I'm stereotyping slightly here...

More great street art.

Whilst in the Haight, we did quite a bit of clothes shopping ... I was impressed.

Feeling up the footwear or should that be sizing up the shoes...sorry, I mean sizing up the sneakers (get the US lingo right...)

Legs akimbo! Don't you just love this pair of gams?! All done in the best possible taste, of course.

Some musical, erm, raisins, livening up a shop!


And that is that ... hope you enjoyed and now fancy visiting even more ....


  1. Brilliant pics. Did you know there's a new Armistead Maupin novel out in November?

  2. Thanks so much for sharing these lovely photos, takes me right back. I have a friend in Wellington who named his hairdressing salon Haight Ashbury, after that area of SF.

  3. Nora - Yes I did and I shall be purchasing it! I actually bought "Michael Tolliver Lives" while in SF and despite some bad reviews I'd read, it was much better than I'd hoped...

    Amanda - You're welcome. Ah what a great name for a salon!

  4. Looks like you had a good time, Simon, judging by the terrific set of pics.

    Love to go and see where they shot so many Quinn Martin productions! "Charmed" too!!