Ian and I drove to San Francisco last Thursday to spend time with his youngest daughter Sharon and her family and to attend grandson Noah's Grandparents Day at his Waldorf school. After a general assembly we all went to our student's classroom. Again I'm taken by the focus on developing the person, and within that framework, education happens. His numbers book looks like an art book but that's because they use art to teach numbers.
The third-grade class visited a farm and came home with a fleece. They demonstrated how they washed and carded it with handcards, then spun it with hand spindles that they made, and finally they knitted the yarn. That's what the children on the right are doing.
Ian's oldest son had planned to spend a weekend with his sister last
month but when he learned we were coming this weekend, changed his plans
and flew in on Friday. Then my son Josh saw my postings on Facebook and texted to see when we were leaving as they were arriving on Monday to spend a few days with a friend. He and son Matt had cooked up a weekend on the Russian River with their families. Much texting later, we extended our stay by a day and both my boys arrived Saturday. Spontaneously we had a family weekend with four of our kids and three of our grandkids. Matt used to watch a TV show called the A-Team. One of the lines was "I love it when a plan comes together" and I couldn't help think of that this weekend.
Saturday morning we went with Noah and his daddy to the California Academy of the Sciences in Golden Gate Park. Noah's favorite part is the "shake house" which simulates both the Loma Prieta and the 1906 earthquakes. We experienced 30 seconds of the latter quake which we were told actually lasted 90 seconds. There was a whole lot of shaking going on.
Noah also loved the "living roof" and got a personal explanation from a docent on how the many layers of the roof work as well as how the portals provide air circulation by opening when the interior becomes to warm to release the hot air and let in cool air in exchange. In five years since the installation there have been no leaks and in spite of all the people, the interior is completely comfortable. I was really impressed. Plus it really looks cool.
We did the touristy things like ride the cable car from downtown to Fisherman's wharf and eat dinner in Chinatown - no small feat with a party of 12. Here the car paused to allow us to take pictures of Lombard Street, the crookest street in the world. For breakfast Sunday morning we arranged to meet at Chow, an eatery in the Castro, with Mineko, daughter of a longtime friend, and her boyfriend. Party of 14!
We visited the Maritime museum on the wharf again this year and added a tour of this WWII submarine, which I think was the crowd favorite. DIL Missy said that as much as she loved touring the sub, her favorite thing was a sea lion who surfaced and swam around in front of us with a big ol' fish in his mouth. He was pretty entertaining.
Ian and I bought seven-day transit passes so we parked our car at the hotel and used public transportation all the time we were there. We had drinks in Vesuvio's, the North Beach beat bar next to Ferlinghetti's City Lights Bookstore. Then we walked a couple of blocks to eat at Original Joe's. I used to read about it in Herb Caen's column and have always wanted to eat there. I'm really glad we did.
We were on the go constantly. I have miscellaneous pictures but after we left I realized that no on
thought to get a picture of our group, very disappointing. We did so much, including collect sand dollars on the beach, but I'm going let it suffice to say that a good time was had by all.
I had recently posted to the Foothill Fiber Guild Yahoo group that I was looking for a portable floor loom, and while we were in the city, I learned of a Dorset workshop loom for sale.
It's in great shape and the price was right. It was a short detour to Lincoln and then we were back on the road. It's on top of our suitcases so you can see how little space it takes up.
We got back last night so for now I'm going to leave it folded up outside my studio door. It used to live in Pacific Grove so I'll have to sand the rust off the heddle bars.. I'm really happy to finally have a workshop loom - what a nice surprise and finale to a surprising weekend.