Thursday, July 9, 2009

City Sights

All day today wherever I went in San Francisco the impulse to pull out the camera was livelier than usual. It started (above) at dawn, at the MUNI stop in the Mission where the fog was backing away from the sunrise.

The afternoon found me in a Noe Valley neighborhood where the light was much warmer and more forceful.

The oversized window and its broken pediment command attention for this miniature brown-shingle, and I think it is a good kind of attention, but my friend thought it was a bad kind of attention.

However, there can be no two views about the haute-moderne extravaganza above. The management of volumes! The rhythmic repetitions! A masterpiece.

The sun was declining as we made our way down the hill and back through the Castro. It surprised me that I had never before noticed the half-eradicated stencil on the rear wall of the Walgreen's building. A nostalgic reference to the ancient days of Harvey Milk and the 1970s cruising scene.

But these tiles (in the foyer of a two-flat building on 19th near Collingwood) marked the moment when my visual cup of blessings overflowed. I suspect they were brought back at great trouble and expense from a Portuguese vacation. Nowhere else that I know of could a person acquire these splendid specimens, evoking (as they do) alternating cross-sections and longitudinal views of the large intestine.