A Girl lays one side of her head on an open window ledge. The wind sweeps salty air lightly through her hair. The sun travels alone overhead with not a single cloud nearby for company. The sun warms her face and reddens her cheeks. With her right ear, she listens to the waves that break along the seashore. A city draws closer from the right. Buildings in neat rows pass her by. She follows them with her eyes until the effort strains her neck. Ahead of more buildings appear. They grow and grow reaching towards the sky. A glinting golden Gate waiting to be explored.
San Francisco is the final stop on my 3 months traveling adventure. I chose to finish it here and spend some time with a friend who had moved there with her partner. Together all 3 of us would experience the city. Them as new residents and me a visitor.
As I have so much to show you of the city, I have separated it into multiple posts. My first post is dedicated to the modern wonder that is The Golden Gate Bridge.
If you type in ‘San Francisco’ into google one of the first images you see is this beautiful red bridge connecting San Francisco Bay and the Pacific Ocean. The name mirrors the strait in which it is built over. As far as I have discovered it was named by an explorer in 1846. John C. Frémont named the strait between the bay and the ocean “Chrysopylae”, or “Golden Gate” for the same reasons that the harbor of Byzantium was called Chrysoceras, or Golden Horn. According to the legend, the Byzantines threw so many valuables into it during the Ottoman Conquest that the waters glistened with gold. The other story around the campfire was that the name was given because of the golden light at sunset. I think I prefer the aforementioned. I like the idea that fish have golden houses to live in. The bridge took almost four years to construct and opened its roadway in 1937.
The Golden Gate bridge is super famous. It has been in so many great films over the years and will probably be seen in many more to come. But the award goes to its stand out performance in Star Trek: The Voyage Home where is stood in the background of a scene with Captain James T Kirk and Spock. It also gave a strong performance in the scene where the crew almost crashed a Klingon space ship into it. It also guest starred in both the Star Trek TV series spin off’s and other films that were part of the franchise. If isn’t obvious yet, I would just like to say I am a huge Star Trek fan!!!!! I grew up watching The Next Generation with my da and was hooked. To get the chance to stand somewhere the characters had stood made me very happy. eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeek!
Below is a squinty-eyed photo of a very happy human.
On the left side of the bridge, you can see a red brick building. This was the Fort point, a masonry seacoast fortification. It was built by The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in 1853 to protect San Francisco which was seen as Americas most important Pacific port at the time. Now it is a National Historic site.
We decided to walk the trails beside the bridge. The below photo was taken at the Golden Gate Overlook. I like this view because it gives a different angle of the bridge and it is a lot less crowded than at the welcome centre.
The trail we took was the ‘Battery to Bluffs Trail’ It takes you around the bridge and along the coastline towards bakers beach. It gives you wonderful views of the ocean and the surrounding area.
I discovered when strolling along Bakers beach that it is a nudist beach. Not exactly the type of environment that is welcoming to tourists with cameras so below is the path to nude beach and ladies and gentleman this is where it ends. Let’s leave the locals to be free to strip off without silly tourist whipping out their cameras to take pictures of their bare arses.
The trails are a wonderful way to enjoy the sun and see the landscape in the area. Go for a walk and check out the trails. And if you feel a little brave, throw away your clothes and your inhibitions and take a dip in the sea. 😉