[ San Fran, Sausalito. ]
Here was noon, with lazy seagulls trotting the length of the pier and the visitor horde slowly traipsing in. A ferry comes by every hour or so from San Francisco. We took the public Golden Gate ferry from Market Street.
Sausalito is, as the guidebooks promised, brighter and warmer, but perhaps only because it wasn’t at all a sky-scraper building town and far less drafty than the long streets of San Fran City. Made a beeline (and it really is simply a turn right down Bridgeway, the main street off the pier) for the famed Hamburgers- I have probably never had organic, grass-fed beef, let alone never-frozen patties.
I’d feared it might be easy to miss (like Pasta Bene tucked down a dark alley) but it stood out in a kind of reverse fashion. Small, a little worn, very casual, among the row of high-end shops and snazzy cafes. Plus, it’s tough to miss the rotating grill of hefty patties in the front window, or the tourists (and miscellany locals and other cafe workers!) forming the lunch queue.
There’s hardly any seats deep on the inside, but the bay across the street is pretty good.
We were ravenous, and it looked so fresh and vibrant from bun to patty, this is the only shot we took before sinking our teeth in. It was around this point i began to properly understand what a world of difference fresh food makes to a meal.
Bellies filled, another twenty minutes wait for the windy (as in spirally) bus-ride to Muir Woods.
There’s no marker, other than the cross of the popular streets signed under the blue sky, the cardboard display completely missable in the corner shop.
Sausalito was en route to Muir Woods.
I was curious about the man who championed nature preservation at a time when the logging industry, engine of settlement America, churned forests for greenbacks. When we drove through the redwoods in 05, i was awed speechless, to use a humblingly awkward phrase. The trees were literally from another time. I felt truly like the small visitor i was, who would measure only a blink in its lifetime, but whose fellow beings had desecrated its kind.
Around this time last year, i’d read The Golden Spruce, by John Vaillant. Each page was an education of another world, another time, another mind.
Muir Woods was an inaccessible strip of Redwood Canyon bought by a congressman and his wife, the subject of a redevelopment lawsuit, and then declared a national monument in 1908.
Theodore Roosevelt to William Kent:
My dear Mr Kent,
By George! you are right. (responding to some photographs of Muir Woods that Mr. Kent had sent him) Those are awfully good photos.