It's pouring in San Francisco.
I'm out walking, comfortably cocooned in a pink Mountain Hardwear jacket. I walk the hills half out of love, half out of defiance. I don't know if you've ever been to San Francisco, but the hills are huge. Sudden. Unrelenting. Sometimes you trust your shoes, your balance, your luck--both up and down. On a sidewalk. I walked up California Street tonight, to the very top. To see the cathedral, the Fairmont hotel, the view. Yesterday, I walked six miles in a relatively straight line to the Golden Gate Bridge, not really caring what hills were in the way. To cleanse my soul with steel wool. To feel the air sucking out of my lungs and to hear my calves scream in protest.
To walk The City. I feel it's the only way to really know her.
Nathan, my husband, taught me about loving this city. It's an uneasy love. A hard love. And a love so blissful that you can't stay away. It aches in your chest when you aren't here. It's in the wind, the fog, the cold, the unexpected warmth, the trolley lines under your feet, the smell of hard city and weed and sourdough and salt, the laughter, the tears, the homeless, the rich, the old lawyers, the hopeful startups, the elegant, the hipsters, the people who go to work at 6:00am and don't leave until midnight, the Italian restaurant where you barely understand the waiter enough to get an order in.
There is nothing like this place. Every time I'm here, it pulls at my heart. I know part of me will always belong here, and could deal with the median price of a home being a million dollars. Do you ever feel that? Beyond all reason and sense, you know you could do it. Because you belong.
I guess that's what makes love so magical. So logically illogical. So utterly perfect and fulfilling and hard. You do whatever it takes, because you must.