The Playan diary…!
I woke up still jet-lagged and mildly bewildered at the amount of other surfer’s at my host’s house… a bit of a full on start to the US! I slept pretty badly but I used the opportunity to test some of my equipment – turns out the half airbed-half memory foam bed is pretty comfy! I can never get on with these mummy sleeping bags though, I’m a night thrasher so I normally end up half-out by morning anyway!
My host is a nice guy, I like him – fairly eccentric (like me I suppose), intelligent and kind… with a cat called Mix who can be put into any position (and doesn’t seem particularly bothered about it either). We all had to leave by 8.30 a.m. so he could get to work, so definitely an early start to exploring! today I had arranged a international hoop jam with Vinnie Mansell from LA, I posted it on the Bay Hoopers Facebook page but didn’t get much response, so I wasn’t expecting much. but it was a good chance to meet up with some of Fireworks Collective before we began to head to the desert. Firstly I got lost on the BART (San Francisco’s underground train network – why don’t they light stations better!?) and almost went back to the airport (what a tourist), then started looking for a vegan restaurant in Mission 22nd street that I’m fairly sure doesn’t exist. In the end I gave up and started walking towards Dolores Park, and found a great vegan-friendly place, Boogaloos on 22nd and Valencia. My first taste of american food! Vanilla soy latte! Huevos racheros with scrambled tofu and extra avocado, ermagherd…
Hoop jam was in the lovely setting that is Dolores Park. Having never been to San Francisco before, I just picked a destination I’d been told about (I didn’t get much feedback from the US hoopers apart from Vinnie, but he’s not local). What a view! I definitely understand why this was recommended to me. You can see so much from on top of that hill!
Only a few locals appeared, notably Steve Hooptiger, who runs the Bay Area Hoopers FB group, and a few of the collective. We mostly hung around drinking champagne and bad beer, eating cocoa roasted almonds and getting massively sunburnt. Who gets burnt in SF and not the desert? Charlie and I, apparently. After the collective went their seperate ways I hung around with Vinnie and Steve for a few hours, eating vegan ice cream and generally causing a ruckus.
When I got back to David’s later on that night, there was a newcomer, Lindsay from Ohio, who’d I’d been expecting (mwahahaha). Lindsay was a real surprise as she emailed me out of the blue while I was still in the UK – David apparently set us up to surf together thinking we’d get on, and he was so right. She was travelling across the States before heading over to South Africa for a veterinary course. She’s so damn cute!