Wednesday, June 20, 2012

China Town: Finding Fu

China Town
Sherron had fond memories of a trip she took to San Francisco’s China Town several years ago with her father, Gordon (not present this trip.) Originally from Hawaii, Gordon is of Chinese descent, and more acquainted with the China Town of Vancouver, British Columbia. We missed Gordon this time, but as my husband pointed out someone had to keep working to fund this trip.

What? I remind Dave, in this day and age, it is perfectly acceptable for women to fund their own trips, and too, someone has to spend money otherwise what good is work?

This day we had important shopping work to do; Sherron wanted to find her favorite treat, ginger candy. What my niece wants she shall have! A good idea—have a plan when shopping. On our list, ginger candy, souvenirs for Nan, and I wanted a memento to mark the occasion.

Dragon on building
In order to distract Dave, we put him in charge of the camera. He’s not much for shopping, but had his eyes full examining the Chinese architecture, calligraphy, and snazzy red lanterns strung everywhere. “Don’t you think these lanterns would look good in our back yard?” 

“No, Dave, don’t see big red lights for our back yard on the list, here.”

Shops stuffed to capacity drew me in, as I immersed myself in trinket, t-shirt, and candy sorting affairs. That’s when I noticed the dragons, figurines made of jade, wood, and stone in all sizes, enchanting creatures. It seemed fitting I should want to own one; in Chinese astrology, 2012 is the year of the dragon.   

Dragons are supposed to bring fu. Would this dragon bring me luck? I couldn’t resist a small one —at the right price—cheap.  A dragon of my very own. I felt lucky already, but would its magical powers help us find Sherron’s candy?  “Ginger,” I whispered into dragon’s ear.

Viola! Moments later, Sherron emerged from a shop carrying a small sack. “Is that what I think it is?”

She smiled and waved her crinkly wrapped treats. Soon after, Nancy found a souvenir for Gordon. “This is perfect,” she cried out from the back of a jam-packed lucky cat and dragon, teacup, purse and post card store—a “Got Rice” t-shirt. According to Nan, “Gordon says this all the time.”

Dragon accompanied us through the rest of our day in San Francisco yielding a delicious dinner at North Beach Restaurant followed by a show at Club Fagazi, Beach Blanket Babylon.

This post is the last in my series of Nan’s surprise visit. I’m a lucky gal. Full of fu you may say, and back home I put Fu to work assisting me with his magical powers blessing the submission files on my desk.

Do you have a memento that brings you luck?   

Friday, June 1, 2012

Part II: City of Saxophones

Barb, Dave, Sherron, Nan
With clam chowder cravings satisfied we strolled Pier 39, poked into shops, and let our senses lead us through the crowd of afternoon visitors. Street performers entertained, some talented and some not, including Tree Man (my name for him) a gristly fellow wearing a faded camouflage shirt crouched behind a trash receptacle clutching a dead tree branch for cover. His gimmick, to jump out at folks and demand money for scaring the crap out of them, failed.

Another charmer, bearded and unkempt, Jingle Man, sang “Jingle Bell Rock,” changing the lyrics to suit his thirsty need. “Jingle Bell, jingle bell, jingle bell drunk, give me some money for a jingle bell drink, etc…” 

“At least he’s singing, doing something in exchange for money,” Dave said. Christmas carols in April? No pull on my heartstrings! Most paused to laugh and kept their change.

The real talent drew bigger crowds. Knife Juggler, was sharp to watch, as was Rubberband Man, who rubbernecked dozens of tourists at a time. Saxophone Player, I couldn’t locate, but the tunes were lovely. Could be the music was canned. It seems whenever I visit San Francisco there is a saxophone playing nearby. They ought to call this place the City of Saxophones.

The Bay Bridge
Great views awaited at the end of the pier, but we didn't linger too long, Sherron and Nan wanted to visit China Town. More San Francisco adventures and pictures to come. Share a comment about your latest adventure.

Ben & Jerry or Dave & Barb?

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