This is a re-publish… I took the article offline after my father passed away last October. Now I’m putting it back online. – ljm
I’m excited to say I’m planning a trip to Santa Cruz and San Francisco! I haven’t traveled that far in eight years . . . rather sad to say because I live only ten hours north of there near the California-Oregon border. I just don’t travel much anymore, mainly because I couldn’t afford to. But now I’m making the supreme effort and planning to spend about $1000 on this trip.
I’m starting by renting a car. In a way I’d rather go in my own dear van, but it is old, and I think maybe it would be best not to. If it broke down on my trip I’d use up the rest of my AAA credits just to get it towed back here. So I figure if a rental car breaks down – what to do? Just call the company and complain? Seems a lot easier! They would have other cars to replace it with. I just hope I get a car I really like.
Food is an issue because I’m vegan now, and gluten-free. It is hard to find both at the same time in a restaurant. I figure if nothing else I can ask for a salad and baked potato. Most of the time I’ll look for whole food grocery stores with (hopefully) juice bars. I love vegetable juices! Live, raw food is best. There should be plenty of these places in San Francisco, especially… and the East Bay Area.
I’ll be doing novel research while I’m there! Yes! I’m so happy and looking forward to this! I started the project in 2004 and even started a blog for it then… here it is: Perfection: Novel Research. The novel is named “Perfection”. It is about a woman who is 1/2 Ohlone Native American and 1/2 Californio (Spanish). The novel starts in 1854 or thereabouts. In the opening chapter she’s traveling up the coast from Pescadero to San Francisco, where she’ll be living in a rooming house and working in a restaurant.
While down south I’ll be going to the Santa Cruz Mission where her parents lived, and studying that area. Then I’ll be driving north to do some research in the San Francisco City Library and in the Bancroft Library at the University of California, Berkeley. I’ll be looking for old newspapers from San Francisco in the 1850s.
So happiness abounds because after all these years I’ll be able to take the research trip I needed to make that novel happen. It is a fantastic project – one I’ll be writing for adults, not just for teenagers as is my normal fare.
One more thing I’ll be doing. I plan to write articles for my Journey! California travel website as I go along. Travel stories! I reserved that site for travel during my retirement years. Finally, it is happening! I want to make that a huge and successful website, so a lot more travel is planned. This is a great addition to what I already have there.
I have roots in the San Francisco Bay Area! I was born in Oakland, and raised north of there in El Cerrito and Richmond, in the El Sobrante area. I attended De Anza High School which is right around the corner from where I lived – at 3314 Morningside Drive, Richmond, CA. Right across the street from a Lutheran church. The church was being built at the time we moved into that house. My sister and I used to go over there to pick up shards of stained glass that were abandoned by the workers. Later we attended church there a few times though my parents were both devoted to being non-religious.
It will be great to be back in Santa Cruz and San Francisco. My mother lived in Santa Cruz as a child. I moved there when I was 18 and worked at the John Ingalls Cannery which was torn down some time later. I graded brussel sprouts! My first job as an adult!
Since I was raised in the San Francisco Bay Area I often went to San Francisco as a child. I lived there for a while from age 18 to 21, before I moved north to Redding. So this will very much be like going home.
While I’m there I plan to meet some of my online writing friends! One of them lives in San Francisco and we will meet at her house! These ladies belong to a group of NaNoWriMo writers over age fifty. We met in 2007 and have been in a group together ever since. “Literary Dreams”.
So it will be a full week for me. Definitely something to look forward to and well worth the thousand dollars I’m planning to put into it.