Monday, June 27, 2005

My Weekend Off

Having completed most of the setting up chores, and left with a day before school starts proper, I took a quick drive down to the Berkeley Marina. I received two recommendations to head there - one from Don the Technician, the other from...I forgot who.

Wat a view it was.

I drove right to the end of the Marina, where the Fisherman's Pier was.

Humans aren't the only fishers here

Fisherman's Pier is 3000 feet of fishing heaven in San Francisco Bay. That's 3000 feet of useable space - the entire length of the Pier is actually 3.5 miles. From the Pier, I could see San Francisco, the Bay Bridge, and the Golden Gate Bridge - shrouded in the summer fog this area is famous for.

Golden Gate Bridge in the Background

I arrived at the Pier at about 1 in the afternoon and damn near froze to death. The sea wind (I hestitate to call it sea breeze) blasted away relentlessly. I found out later from a former boat salesman, John, that the Bay has some of the best sailing available in the world - as evidenced by the many sailboats I saw.


Worried that my toes were going to turn blue and fall off, I headed for land as fast as I could. Hoping to catch more glimpses of the sailboats, I drove down to the berths.

Oooo...many sailboats

I had never been to a Marina before in Singapore. To my best knowledge, those are exclusively private affairs - very much unlike the one here. Hence, I ogled at pretty sailboats until I felt like leaving.

One thing about Berkeley Marina though - it was also connected to a small nature preserve where bird watchers liked to congregate. There were nearby barbecue pits overlooking a sheltered bay area as well. Familes gathered around in idyllic bliss.

And there were squirrels!

My good friends know that I've a barely-concealed obsession with things cute and furry; the fluffier the better. Here in the Bay Area - EVERYTHING is pong-pong and fluffier than what I am used to. Including the squirrels, which I like chasing around.

Don't shoot me please!

Needless to say, I was damn proud getting this shot of the squirrel. I've tried several times to get a squirrel close up, but none were as good or close up as this one.

All in all, a nice lazy afternoon spent doing boh-liao things - for the first time since I got here.


Huichieh said...

If you want good shots of squirrels, go to the UC Berkeley campus. Near the entrance that is across from the junction of Center and Oxford is the Grinnell Natural Area. There are some logs there--and if you sit long enough, and look friendly enough, and bring some nuts, they will come right up to you, possibly even feeding from your hand. There are other spots throughout the campus but this is the most obvious one. You can see a close shot of one I took here

Rumors have it that the squirrels at the Marina had been feed contraceptives (for population control)--something that will never happen on the campus. It's not for nothing that Berkeley is "the absolute best place" (beating Stanford, of course!) on the Campus Squirrel Listing.

Slinky said...

You completely cracked me with the description of everything ebing more pong-pong than it usually is here. (and no, the marinas back home aren't private affairs. Especially not if you bribe the guards. *innocent look*)

I loved the post, simply because it showed me pretty pictures of another place, and you sound better.

Anthony said...


You are a godsend. Guess what I'll be attempting in the coming weekends? :D


You're not the only one with a prediliction to fluffy animals you know. And yes, I'm a lot better - only because everything I needed to get done has been done. No more self-inflicted pressure. Not until school starts tomorrow at least.

Huichieh said...

You're most welcome! You post really brings back good memories. So jealous: the squirrels here in Toronto are mostly an ungainly black. But, to make up for that, there is a racoon somewhere in my neighborhood.

Grinnell is more or less the spot; but those who know more of the campus will also point to several other locations. One of my favorites is behind Stephens Hall--had many lunches (we packed our own food) there with Wifey.

Nuts (e.g., peanuts) are fine. We tried dried fruits but the critters don't all take to them. Most stayed away from M&Ms, except for one particularly obese one in the vicinity of Tolman Hall.

Now the squirrels in the City Park in Sacramento is another matter altogether. They are much larger on average, much more aggressive (come right up to you), and they definitely like M&Ms.

San Francisco Click said...

I am sure you have seen Alcatraz Island at the end of the pier. Here is a Virtual Tour of the island I have made recently.

Apocalyptic Wen said...

Yeah Kace, go to Alcatraz and get me a T-Shirt there.