I grew up in California but moved away in mid-2010 to the UK for a postgrad at Central Saint Martins. Recently, I had the opportunity to visit San Francisco with my partner. It had been almost five years since I was last in the state.
I had a great time showing him some of my favorite things in San Francisco, discovering new favorites, seeing family and friends. California was as beautiful as I remember, perhaps more so. I didn’t realise just how much I had missed the environment, the fog and the wildlife. A couple of friends and I happened to visit Ocean Beach on an overcast day when thousands of bright indigo jellyfish-like creatures washed up on shore. I spent an afternoon walking the trails through Mt. Sutro with a good friend, passing California poppies, Pepper trees, serpentinite boulders, eucalyptus, mountain irises, hummingbirds, columbines, poison oak.
However, a few of the more disappointing aspects of Californian life have lingered in my mind since returning to the UK, things that I rarely noticed (or maybe more accurately, tried to ignore) when I was living in the Bay Area.
One moment from our trip sticks out in particular.