Throwback: My First Visit to San Francisco

Kids on Cable Car

That’s me in the yellow coat.

Kids in Union Square

Union Square (circa 1984?)

I found these gems at my mom’s house on our recent visit. One summer in the early ’80s, my mom, grandma, Auntie and sister went on a tour of California and Mexico (the Mexico portion was really, really weird. I think it was Tijuana) and one of the main stops was  San Francisco. Thankfully, my mom was no traveling dummy (she’s been all over, plus she spent a semester at SF State) and unlike many tourists, she made sure we had appropriate attire for this portion of the trip, even in (especially in) the summer.

I don’t remember too many details about the trip. I know we walked on the Golden Gate Bridge and did all the other touristy things like Fisherman’s Wharf (sigh) and Union Square (where we stayed. Possibly the Sir Francis Drake) and rode the cable cars.

Kid in hotel room

At our hotel (in my mom’s nightgown which I looooved).

At the time, I had no desire to live anywhere other than Hawaii. I wasn’t even thinking about my possible future at that age. I wish I could go back and whisper into my younger self’s ear: “Look around you. Breathe it in. Remember this place. You’re going to live here. Find yourself here. Fall in love here. Start a family here. And then you’re going to leave.”

I’m not sure how much attention I would have paid to my older self. But hearing it would have saved me a LOT of trouble (stress, worry, heartache) later on. Even without that voice to guide me, I eventually found my way. And 18 years later, here I am, looking back and looking ahead.  I’m feeling fulfilled, grateful, anxious and optimistic all at once. If my future self could whisper to me now, I hope she would tell me that everything is going to be just fine. Breathe it in, remember this place. And take one day at a time.

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