This weekend, I’m celebrating my SanFraniversary.
Exactly one year ago, I packed everything up and flew from Austin to San Francisco, with no return ticket in hand.
I’ve learned a great deal from this city and the people in it. More than anything, I have a greater appreciation for how to enjoy life.
Did you know this is the view just 5 minutes from downtown?
And that people actually go to work like this?
Or that there’s a magical land of wine just 1.5 hrs out of the city?
The Bay Area is brimming with hidden (and not so hidden) adventures.
As I was writing yesterday, I posted a quick question to friends on Path: “What is your favorite thing about living in this city?” A few answers were purely goofy, others more poignant:
“The mindset” - Ted Rheingold
“Food” - Sarah Lane
“The fact that we live in a city that feels like a town.” - Michael Perry
“Peter Pan Syndrome” - Ryan Lawler
What I love about these responses is that they accurately capture distinctly what I love about living here and the prompt for this post.
There is a certain shared energy here in San Francisco that I’ve never experienced in other cities I’ve lived. It’s as if the whole town can disagree on politics, industry knowledge, personal decisions, etc, but agree on the most important thing: we’re so lucky to live here.
I’ll never forget the first moment I realized this. I was dancing and singing with about a dozen other friends, on our way back from Napa in a limo bus (an annual tradition called #WinoWagon). As we emerged from that double rainbow tunnel before the Golden Gate bridge, something incredible happened. Everyone fell silent and just stared out the left window at the skyline in front of us, the bay sparkling with pride. A few of us smiled at each other, seemingly communicating some form of nonverbal understanding. Others gazed longingly.
I remember thinking “this is why we do it.”
Living in San Francisco is like living in an alternate reality. Sure, we don’t have a great grasp on world issues and men can get away with dressing like teenagers and sleeping in until 10:00am. But, when it comes down to it, there’s nowhere else like it.
Even as I write this, the sun is setting over North Beach, I’m sipping a fresh margarita, there are scattered groups of people hanging out drinking beer on their roofs, and I can hear seagulls in the distance - no doubt harassing tourists at Fisherman’s Wharf for dinner. For all the 15 hour days and endless social events we attend, these are the moments we cherish. This is what it’s all for.
Oh, and just so you don’t think it’s all rainbows and ponies, here are a few more things I’ve learned in the last year:
- Unless you spend a great deal of time here, it’s impossible to fully appreciate the unique culture of each neighborhood.
- Everyone pretty much hates the Marina, except for the people that live in the Marina, Pac Heights and North Beach. And they don’t care what everyone thinks. Except for the other people that live in the Marina, Pac Heights and North Beach.
- You should own a stroller if you live in Noe Valley. And no, you can’t just push around a case of beer. Jacob and I tried.
- Brunch is basically a contact sport. It’s also the modern day “let’s do lunch!”
- It’s really cool to work in SoMa, but not to live in SoMa.
- If everyone just walked to work and/or their meetings every day, they could skip the gym. These hills really are a b*tch.
- If you do something other than work with startups, you’re automatically really interesting.
- Everything really does look like the show Full House.
Thank you San Francisco for an incredible year. Here’s to many more like it.