Monday, June 09, 2014

Day 3: Two San Francisco Festivals

The first was Union Street Festival. This was a festival like any other, with light entertainment, local and chain food stands, and local and chain artisans. Mostly local. What made it San Francisco, or California, was the high proportion of products and services that are new age, artisinal, fair trade, vegan, gluten-free crystal, yoga, etc. People were very supportive of "kosher", too; though much of what they sold wasn't kosher, the idea of kosher in California is apparently new-agey, like gluten-free and hand-sourced.

The second was the Haight-Ashbury Street Fair. This festival is more like retro hippieville than like actual hippieville. Many vendors were posers making a lot of money selling generic products (like tie-dyed shirts and stuff) to tourists, but some of the people and products looked authentic. There were drugged out looking guys lolling about on the street and the smell of hemp was pervasive. The music was raucous, and the bands were actual bands of the sixties/seventies or bands that played similar music.

The Union Street Festival had items like cold-brewed coffee, soy kale shakes, and light brunch foods, in addition to barbecue and beer, while the Haight-Ashbury Fair was mostly barbecue and beer.

I walked back from HASF through the park.

Plaque dedicated to Allen Ginsberg

Sign reads: Herbs to help you feel happy, healthy, horny, and naturally high

In today's Haight-Ashbury, the freaks and the pigs mix comfortably.


Duck and turtles in Golden Gate Park

Boats on the lake in Golden Gate Park

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