Wednesday, August 12, 2009

I Left My Eyes in San Francisco

Matty and I drove to SF yesterday for my first visit ever to the City by the Bay, and we had a blast! It was overwhelming but exciting. Lurker and good friend Christine drove us around the city yesterday, you'll be glad to know, taking over my car Graybow and doing a masterful job of driving. It's been way too long since I had to drive around in a big city, and my unfamiliarity with SF was way too much to handle driving and sightseeing at the same time. You know me: safety first!

I didn't see a whole lot of new birds, but along with the million pigeons I did see this little guy at the entrance to the Botanical Gardens:Is that an Anna's Hummingbird? Check out this lucky shot:Wow! Please tell me it's not just a plain old Ruby-throated! I really couldn't tell; the backlighting is murder in the pics too. Anyone? Anyone?

Also saw this other little guy in someone's garden on Page Street:
Is that maybe a Common Ground Dove? No, it can't be--they don't live up here, nor do Inca Doves. But he was tiny, much smaller than a regular Mourning Dove, and his plumage has that scalloped look of an Inca Dove. Hmmm. Is it just a MODO?

By the way, the Botanical Gardens were amazing. Here's a small sampling of flowers:

And we saw this beautiful Painted Lady, a butterfly I haven't seen since I was a kid in Texas:

Plus we saw a lot of city. Here's a sampling of that:

We saw some racy stuff, which is just side by side with other stuff:

We we buzzed Haight-Ashbury, we skimmed by Golden Gate Park, were up on Twin Peaks, and we even saw Absinthe restaurant where my no-longer-future-girlfriend Jamie Lauren (of Top Chef) works as executive chef! We didn't eat there, however, as Christine and Matty said the best time to see her is during brunch and we didn't get up early enough. It's like two blocks from Christine's house, though, so maybe next time. We ate some great food during our two-visit and had drinks at Marlena's where we saw the owner's amazing Harry Potter memorabilia collection. Cool!

We came back today, determined to do Fisherman's Wharf and other touristy things on another trip. I was just so overwhelmed; so much new stuff to see, and I'm still trying to get used to all the new stuff in Rohnert Park (or RoPo, as I'm told the locals call it--how tragically hip!). It was nice to come off the 101 to our low-traffic low-stress little town.

P.S.--some new lifers from RoPo too, though I don't have pics: Bushtit (hee hee), which is such a tiny bird!, and Brewer's Blackbird, which are everywhere here! Like grackles back east! So that's 206, baby!


Rabbits' Guy said...

Whew! Yes - Fisherman's Wharf ... a whole day there all by itself ... especially for an East Coaster.

FranIAm said...

Oh Delia! I love reading this!!! And the photos!

On the run heading to work but so glad to see how things are going.

Have fun!

PS - driving in SF is hard, the hills alone are tough. Glad Christine took the wheel!

Mel said...

Wow, that's quite a bit to see!
I have no idea what that hummingbird is, but I'l curious now!

KGMom said...

Yay--Delia--you are enjoying your new place. Hurray hurray hurray.

Matty Boy said...

I'm a local... I've never called it RoPo.

Next time in San Francisco, call first! I probably won't be out of town like I was this weekend (boo!) and I can show you some of the best restaurants that aren't super expensive or super touristy.

p.s. Probably a little ruby-throat, but check with other local birders before taking my word.

dguzman said...

Rabbits' Guy--it took a whole day just for Golden Gate Park's Botanical Gardens, so I don't doubt it will take a whole day for the wharf.

Fran--having fun and hoping for work. Glad you liked the pics!

Mel--I know--I was exhausted. I think it's just a ruby-throated.

KGMom--indeed, you should come out here--the weather's great!

Matty Boy--I'll remember that. I think RoPo is kinda silly anyway. Calling you later!

Earl Cootie said...

Looks like an Anna's to me. But I haven't seen a Ruby-throated in a couple of decades.

dyana said...

Eye catching photo of a bird ......

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Jack said...

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Elizabeth said...

Hey, you have the same Jack leaving comments that Julie Zickefoose was just complaining about (! Funny.

Anna's seems like a good guess since the breast looks pretty green. I've seen rufous hummingbirds nesting in the Botanical Gardens, and they look very different. That area is filled with hummers! It's my favorite birding spot in San Francisco.

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