I was in Ashland, at the Oregon Shakespeare Theatre, near where they filmed The Goonies and Short Circuit. Their airport only had one gate. The plane wasn't taking off. To be precise: It was leaving 1 hour late, which means my connecting flight would be 4 hours late. I would get into NYC at 1:30 AM and have to get home from there. I asked the flight attendant: Could I take a red-eye, stay in San Francisco for the day, and land at 7?
She gave me permission.
Heshy picked me up from the airport. We only had an hour before he left for work, so we did everything fast, even the used bookstores. He found a used copy of Yom Kippur a Go-Go, which somebody'd written a really sweet and meaningful dedication inside. I took a picture, but I'm not sure if it's kosher to share it, or if that would be too invasive.
Luckily, there was a ton of graffiti to distract us.
And some of the more boring variety:
But that's also the church I lived across the street from when I first moved to town.
In high school, I wrote stories about how my friend Adam was going to be a computer engineer and change the universe. And then it happened. I waited for him in this communist coffee shop while I wrote a picture book. I'm not just being conservative, it really was a communist coffee shop.
Then Adam picked me up and drove me around Bernal Heights. I think I spent more time in cars that day than I did in 5 years of living in San Francisco. He dropped me off at the rabbi's, and then I took a look at the new digs. I took tons of pictures of the rabbi's night garden, but none of them came out. Like much of San Francisco, I guess, you just had to be there.
Mendel and the new shul! It's actually a garage and it is so punk, yet paradoxically, so clean. They basically saved my life several times over when I lived in SF. Not to mention my soul. I'm overdue to give them a donation. If you've got a couple extra bucks, please donate too -- they give out free Shabbos meals to anyone who shows up.
Then we all made a mess together. And then the rebbetzin came to tell us to clean up, but I couldn't stick around. I was running late for my flight.