Steven (unzeugmatic) wrote,

Running Mom and Dad Ragged in SF

I continue to plan the upcoming trip to San Francisco with my parents to a level of detail that's starting to approach my comfort level, although we're still pretty far from that and that's no doubt an impossible goal anyway. I'm arranging for lodging and transportation and day tours and dinner parties and I'm contacting old family friends who live in the area. Of course my parents could do much of this themselves, but they are deferring to me here. Hee-hee.

When I first conceived of this trip, I had in mind lots of time for tours of the East Bay, and a big open dim sum meal for anybody in San Francisco who might want to join us, and possibly a field trip to Muir Woods so my father can pay tribute to one of his heroes. But then the reality of time as we experience it in this dimension became evident and all of that will have to wait for the next time. For now, here's the schedule:

Friday March 31 - Monday April 3:
I arrive in town a few days early, "to clean up before my parents arrive" as I've been saying. I'll visit an old friend in the East Bay and go the Beer Bust at the Lone Star and generally meander about, as we all know I love to do in San Francisco.

Mom and Dad arrive 3pm. I pick them up and take them to their Victorian hotel near Japantown to settle in. To begin their San Francisco experience I'm arranging a small dinner party with a few friends of mine whom they've met before, possibly at the Zuni Cafe (for its "how very San Francisco" air) but I'm seriously looking into other options, possibly Rose Pistola in North Beach.

Morning drive around the city, to introduce the general feel of the place. We're meeting an old family friend for lunch at a new restaurant on Market near Castro called Catch. This woman is the daughter of a good friend of my parents and she spent quite a bit of time at our house when she was a girl; none of us have seen her in what may be twenty years. She contacted me about a year ago, having found my livejournal. She's somewhere in her thirties now and it's been great fun getting back in touch with her. She and my parents have not been in direct contact here yet, but we are all very excited about seeing each other.

In the afternoon we're going to the Haas-Lilienthal House in Pacific Heights, which I've wanted to see for years and it's open only two days a week so this is it. Then we may walk around Pacific Heights a little (I have a tour book!) before heading across the Bay Bridge for dinner with some folkie friends of my parents who lived near us in New Jersey when I was a teenager and who now live in Richmond. Making those arrangements was harder than I anticipated, since they turn out to be in Paris for the month of March, but everybody is looking forward to the reunion.

I want us to get to the DeYoung Museum as soon as it opens, to see the Arts and Crafts exhibit that is the ostensible purpose of this trip. We'll decide after seeing the exhibit whether we want to stay around and see the other museums in Golden Gate Park and perhaps have lunch at the Japanese Teahouse there. My guess is that the museums and the park and lunch will take up most of the day. If not we'll do more driving tours or perhaps another neighborhood walk (Nob Hill? Jackson Square? North Beach?). Maybe if we go to North Beach my father can go to City Lights and tell them what year he bought his copy of Howl; it has to have been one of the earliest printings. My parents weren't exactly "Beats" but they certainly lived through that era.

Then we'll head down to Palo Alto for dinner with three generations of the Zwicky family: Arnold, Elizabeth, and Opal. My parents have already met Elizabeth, when we dined together at a LISA conference in New Orleans several years ago (where I gave a presentation, which was the excuse for my parents to see New Orleans for the first time).

Believe it or not, this is still to be determined. I am researching various professional San Francisco tours that might be possible but what I plan to do is lay out a few options for my parents (driving? walking? architecture? art museums? Alcatraz? Sausalito?) and we'll decide over breakfast. Perhaps in the evening we'll have time for dinner with my host Doug, who knows my parents from years ago when they attended many concerts given by the national lesbian and gay bands in northeast cities and carried water for the national band at the 1993 March on Washington.

To the airport. Why did I think Tuesday-Saturday would be a whole week? But that's probably long enough. There's nothing that would keep us from doing this again in a year if we have a feeling of how very much we have yet to do.

So... whew. My mother said she's going to take a nap now, to rest up.
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