Sunday, August 23, 2015

A Trip to the Old Neighborhood

Elliot, circa 2010
We took a brief excursion to San Francisco last week, letting Elliot see the neighborhood where he spent his first two years.

Back then, he was the only kid on the street. And in fact, he was known as "the Langton Street baby" until another couple had a child.

These days, Elliot has no recollection of our time on Langton Street. But we have talked enough about the neighborhood — and its gigantic mural — for him to become curious.

So when we passed through town last Monday, we stopped the car and everyone got out.

You can tell that some of the homes have been spruced up (and no wonder — they're worth a lot more now than when we left in 2010). But our place didn't look all that different.

And the mural, known as "Frisco's Wild Side," was in good shape. It served as the biggest conversation piece for our three young visitors.

We got a family shot in front of it (minus Kelly, since she took the picture).

After that, we surveyed the restaurant scene. The former Julie's Supper Club, which was known as Radius when he left in 2010, is now called El Capitan.

Here's what's funny: Out of a desire to preserve continuity — or save money — the restaurant still bears all three signs!

For a nostalgic visitor like me, that seemed perfect.

Lastly, we visited a neighborhood mainstay: Brainwash. It now has a parklet out front. (A couple parking places sacrificed their lives to make this possible.)

Inside, the laundromat/cafe is unchanged and still attracts an eclectic crowd (the one thing the clientele shared in common was being annoyed by our three children). Elliot saw all the flyers on the counter and asked, "Are these free?" before stuffing them in his pockets.

Despite being a native of SoMa, he doesn't know how to play it cool just yet.