Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Now I live in Oakland. It's been a couple weeks since we last spoke for a couple reasons. One of which is that my internet has been M.I.A. and finally got it back up and running yesterday, though it took about four hours due to old wiring in the basement ("It'll be another week and a half before you can come back? I'll give you fifty bucks cash if you come by now."), and then the wireless wasn't getting recognized by the computer which lead me to IM-ing with Jaya (India) for a good hour and then another half hour talking to Mario (Texas) on the phone. Yet, it works and is kind of fast and I'm a little afraid of how much the monthly bill will be once taxes and all that stuff is added on but there it sits (looking at my router and imagining the blinking green lights that I can't actually see because I'm not wearing my glasses). My cat threw up four times this morning.

Which was kind of a protest against the Wisconsin union crisis but was also because I wasn't getting up to feed her. It's important to keep the ball rolling and when it stops, one has to take action. If she didn't make a fuss it's possible that she would starve to death. So after I threw her out the apartment, cleaned up the puke and went back to bed, I had the idea that next time maybe I'll run her under some water. I know it sounds cruel and maybe it is, but four pukes is two pukes too many. Not that the transition has not been difficult but "It's been difficult for all of us, Kitty Girl." Yes, I live alone now. Jinx's health has been failing but that's a story for another day.

It's been a big transition. Moving weekend was great. Four great friends helped me move out of the Valencia apartment and into this one. I took Friday off of work, spent the day packing. Spent Saturday moving and then spent Sunday and the next week unpacking. Weekend. A few days and then today, and the shock of leaving SF has largely dissapated and I'm happily settling into my new neighborhood. Which is amazing in it's own ways, for example, empty wide streets filled with beautiful old buildings. Like they built a city and nobody came. Or it turned into Detroit. Or some combination of the two, at least in my immediate vicinity. Then there's China town a block to the south, the lake three blocks to the East, downtown and the BART four blocks to the West, and then there's the North. Home of the mysteriously named "Snow Park." This is my new neighborhood. All for about four hundred dollars less what I would be paying in SF for a similar space.

A couple weeks ago I was talking to a collegue who, along with her boyfriend, were looking for a place. I told her I had just found a good one in Oakland and she said that because she was a life long San Franciscian, she would never consider living here. Which made me wonder, why is that? Beyond the obvious of one person's preference, there's a huge difference between San Francisco and the East Bay. I loved living in San Francisco because it's an amazing city. So much everywhere, full of interesting creative people. There were three books stores within a block of my old apartment, whereas now I have to travel a mile to get to a (non-christian) book store around here. SF is dense with people like me: book reading burrito eating bike riding hipsters (more or less). Whereas in Oakland it's a lot more "diverse." Culturally and economically and socially. It's not just homeless and tech people and artists here, it's them and everybody else as well; families, phone guys, and all those people who teach at Oaksterdam University. Inescapable Buddhist truth: "From all that he loves, man must part." Something like that. Come by when you can. Hope you're well.