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September 30, 2010

Nowhere To Go
Thursday. A bit like yesterday, the mind floating along in its own little bubble, smiling at one and all, but without a whit of thought or ambition. Let's see, that sounds more on the brain dead side than I wanted. Floating along, observing the world with an inner smile, our broad brimmed white Scalzi hat with the black ribbon pulled down low, feeling just fine, thank you, but not ready to cross the street, let alone run, to photograph a train.

Which means what? To bed relatively early, up relatively late. Breakfast and the papers at the usual place, the sun coming through the clouds early in the morning, but the temperatures predicted to be some ten degrees cooler than they were yesterday. It took a bit to get me out of the apartment, but I found myself waiting on a bus before eleven, thinking what to do now? Not much of a breakfast, so maybe a strawberry shortcake at Bakesale Betty's? They're open at eleven.

Then the thought: I was two days overdue for another blood test, a matter of getting off at Broadway and catching another bus to the hospital, something I try to avoid (blood tests), but we were right here at the moment, nearby. A bus then to the corner of Broadway and Grand (yes, there was little or no line in front of a newly opened Bakesale Betty's), another bus to the hospital, a blood test and then a small cup of coffee and a bag of sea salt potato chips outside on the sidewalk patio of a small lunch place across the street.

Why a bag of potato chips? That's a lunch? Well, I was hungry, but in looking over their offerings, I couldn't find anything I was willing to attempt, even the coffee left me ambivalent. But I did want to sit for a while in the cool and the shade on their patio, so it was potato chips.

Another bus then caught beside the used Honda lot, a couple of Elements for sale, both of them younger than mine, but both of them with more miles. Well, actually the 2007 had me beat. A look at the both of them (they look like mine), a glance at their sales stickers listing mileage and age and such, a walk back twenty paces to the bus. Nice car, the Element, I'm happy to have mine (for the rest of time).

This time a transfer to the free (painted bright green) Jack London shuttle that goes up and down Broadway from Jack London Square to Grand, a walk through Jack London, which was pretty much empty, not unusual in the middle of the week with one or two of their major tenants out of business, a picture of a container ship loading (or unloading), an ice cream cone at a sidewalk table outside Ben & Jerry's. You see a pattern here, do you not? Sidewalk tables? I seem to pick my restaurants by their sidewalk tables. I'm not altogether sure why.

A younger woman passed with a reasonably nice digital camera over her shoulder, looking for something, doubling back after she'd passed to ask me if there was anywhere to eat (other than, say, a more expensive white table cloth place such as Scotts)? Well, there was a Subway around the corner, a coffee shop a block down the way, but nothing else really. I'd settled on an ice cream cone for lunch, thinking Subway, thinking the coffee shop, neither of which called out. A bag of potato chips and now an ice cream cone. Not sure either are recommended by the serious meals set.

What kind of pictures did I shoot? Candid portraits of people. She'd just gotten back from a year in Europe and was, she guessed, looking to make a living shooting pictures. A travel photographer? I hear people do that. A year here, a year there, a year everywhere, camera in hand. She opted for Subway, I opted for the bus.

Back to the apartment changing buses at 20th, a walk then past Bakesale Betty's, not much of a line, but the diners filling all the outside ironing boards. (Yes, ironing boards with benches.) Another bus to a near the apartment coffee shop for a cookie and a small coffee (out at one of their sidewalk tables in the shade) before a short jaunt back to the apartment. It's now after two, the sun still bright, but with a cool enough breeze, the fan set up nearby on the carpet helping out.

Another day in Oakland. Mr. S's band has a gig in the area tomorrow evening, so something to shoot coming up. A couple of head's up on Facebook yesterday of coming events. I'll have to look at them, we obviously haven't run out of weekend festivals yet. I believe there's another first Friday of the month Art Walk tomorrow in the early evening on Telegraph, tomorrow night. Maybe I can slip it in before attending Mr. S's gig later at The Starry Plough. Why not?

Because attending the one will poop you out.

Maybe, but I seem to recall The Starry Plough is a short way down Telegraph with a small dogleg to the left. Drive and park for the Art Walk, pop in the car for a short ride to the Plough, pay the cover charge, say hello to the usual crew and order a Guinness. If they have Guinness. I once lived near The Starry Plough, although I've only been there once, some years back, when Mr. S's band played there for the first time.

Has it been that long? Have they been playing that long? Our old bands reliably fell apart every few years, this one, from what little I've heard containing the usual internal turmoil, seems solid. Or set in their ways. Or, more likely, with nowhere to go.

You're drifting.

I am.

The photograph was taken on a street leaving the Solano Stroll in Albany with a Nikon D3s mounted with a 70 - 200mm f 2.8 Nikkor VR II lens.