Saturday, January 19, 2013

San Francisco's inclined streets and Teja Singh

Visiting San Francisco on the car may be equally scary even for expert drivers as well for novices.
How Many Hills Are There In San Francisco?
Well it depends upon; When is a hill a hill?
During the past several years, I’ve made an effort to walk every street in San Francisco. If counting most of the “unofficial” hills as well, which brings the total to more than 50. It’s no wonder that San Francisco is considered the second hilliest city in the world, next to La Paz. I believe hills were no obstruction to the city planners.
Steep streets of San Francisco

When a road encountered a hill it went up straight and then wend down straight.
Driving a car in the steep streets of San Francisco can be very dangerous with manual transmission, many streets have up to 33% inclination.
I might recount that damp morning when I drove my friend’s manual transmission up the impossible grade, and was forced to stop, just below the top! In frantic effort, I had to pull the emergency brake and disengage the clutch.
I craned my neck to peer anxiously at the car sniffing my back bumper.
Steep streets of San Francisco
Man behind the wheel was also looking at me with Bulging eyes. I gunned the engine. Popped the clutch. Released the brakes and laid down some rubber with a piercing squeal.
Steep streets of San Francisco
Car flew in slow motion but slowly onto the hump. I thanked God.
I always freak out when I park my car in the inclination. I make sure several times that my front wheels are bent such a way that if car becomes runaway then it will not rocket down straight to the Pacific Ocean but will hit the curb and the buildings.
Steep streets of San Francisco
I make sure several times that my parking gear is engaged and then I double check if my emergency brakes are fully engaged. Finally I always unsuccessfully look out for some half of a brick to tuck under one of the tires. Always I seriously think about tucking my backpack under the tire. May be next time I will take a two pairs of bricks with me but then I will be getting a ticket for littering or creating some other sort of hazardous situation for others.
Steep streets of San Francisco
On clear days here you can scan the shoreline from Fort Funston all the way to the Marin Headlands. As the sun goes down, you can see the lights blink on at St. Anne’s, St. Ignatius, Lone Mountain, Temple Emanuel, the Transamerica Pyramid, UCSF and the Laguna Hospital.
Steep streets of San Francisco
San Francisco is also called as Gay capital of the world. The Castro District, commonly referenced as The Castro, is a neighborhood in Eureka Valley in San Francisco, California. The Castro is one of the United States’ first gay neighborhoods. It remains one of the most prominent symbols of lesbian, gay and transgender activism and events.
Steep streets of San Francisco
The local news media view the intersection of Market and Castro as ground zero location for interviews when prominent news impacting the gay community occurs. Actually this area is a hot tourist spot for all. When we visited in this area and had a coffee in a cafe, we were odd and misfit people there. Many activities going on there were very comic to us so we quickly walked out of those enclaves for not to create any unpleasing situation.
Steep streets of San Francisco
Well, San Fransisco is usually covered with fog. Who cares about a little fog (okay, a lot of fog) when there’s so much to do in San Francisco? By day explore Fisherman’s Wharf and the Aquarium of the Bay, ride a cable car, and stroll around the Presidio; by night, have a fabulous dinner (at a Michelin-starred restaurant or a tiny place in Chinatown), then hit some of the best clubs on the West Coast.
Steep streets of San Francisco
Second thing that I find amazing here is Wire Rope Street Railways of San Francisco. This system of street railroad, the invention of Mr. A. S. Hallidie, was put in use by the Clay Street Hill Railroad Company, in the City of San Francisco, California, August, 1873. At the same time Lord Dalhousie was building railway network in India.
Steep streets of San Francisco
Since that time street railways has been constantly running, and has been found to answer all requirements, and to exceed the expectation of engineers and others who had examined the plans of the inventor; and has been adopted by other companies in San Francisco.
The system consists of an endless wire rope placed in a tube below the surface of the ground, between the tracks of a railroad, and kept in position by means of sheaves, upon and beneath which the rope is kept in motion by a stationary engine, the power being transmitted from the motor to the rope by means of grip or other suitable pulleys, and from the rope to the cars on the street by means of a gripping attachment fixed to the car by a steel bar, and which posses through a narrow slot in the upper side of the tube.
Another place that attracts me in San Francisco is Powell Street area. After climbing the steep roads, comes this street.
Steep streets of San Francisco
Here are thousands of homes each with different Spanish Style Architectural facade. One of my friend owns a classy Indian Restaurant here just in front of Powell Street Station. Train Station and street market itself is extremely beautiful setup and upside area.
And any trip to San Francisco is incomplete without watching playful as well lethargic Sea Lions (a type of seal).
Steep streets of San Francisco
Occasionally they can be seen in the bay or Pacific Ocean. Or they are present in hundreds at fishermen’s wharf.
Castro Area
After climbing another hill comes Indian Consulate General at Geary Boulevard. A cluster of small Indian restaurants are here serving inexpensive but great Indian food.
Castro Area
This city has always fascinated me. Whenever I am here I am full of joy.
China Town
Now meet Mr. Teja Singh.
Well, I had a best day in San Francisco and now I am at my friend Kartar Singh’s place in Fremont. He is 47, entered in USA illegally and awaiting for his political asylum case final hearings etc. He left India 20 years ago when his son was just born and daughter was 4. Now his son is in college and daughter got married. Actually Kartar Singh is a grandfather now although he never witnessed his daughter’s marriage. He hasn’t been to India since he arrived in USA.
We both are having drinks at his rented basement.
We hear a knock on the door.
Kartar Singh opens the door and Mr. Teza Singh is standing. He comes inside and we see, he is weeping. Kartar Singh is only aware that Teza Singh owns a small home in the same street. Some times they wave hands for each other and that’s all they know about each other as it happens all over in USA. They both work 6 days 12 hours each day or actually 14 hours because two hours to commute each day.
Today Teja Singh came to Kartar’s basement first time and he is weeping. He is about 50 years old but looks like 70.
“क्या हुआ सरदार जी?”
“आज मैं बर्बाद हो गया, मुझे गिलास दो.”
Taja Singh is given a Patiala Peg and he gulps it in a single shot and then he filled up another one himself.
He shouts weepingly, “मैं लुट गया, बर्बाद हो गया आज.”
“सरदार जी, क्या हुआ आज?”
He busts into another fit. “मत पूछो? मुझसे मत पूछो?”
After Teja Singh finished his second glass, he was on third within just 5 minutes of his arrival. He was sobbing. Then he burst into weeping again and started beating his chest with his both hands.
When his mortification subsided I gave him a napkin to wipe his face and nose.
What happens with Teja Singh?
Teja Singh told:
He arrived in USA 25 years ago.
First 7 years he worked 7 days a week 15 hours a day to pay off the debts that his family incurred to send him to USA through an agent.
Next 8 years he worked 7 days a week 15 hours a day to pay off for this or that scheme (all schemes failed) to this or that agent or lawyer to obtain legal status in USA so his children could come here and have a good life.
Then somehow he gained papers. He was a beaten down wreckage, knees all worn up due to working and standing long hours on petrol pumps. He begun driving a taxi..
Next 5 years he worked 7 days a week 15 hours a day in the waiting for his family’s number to come to immigrate to USA, to welcome his children he raised enough money to make a down payment for a small home.
He looked like 60 years old, a very tired man when his family came to USA 5 years ago. His family was stunned to see his condition.
“पर आज क्या हुआ सरदारजी.”
Teja Singh was in the bathroom and his son came home with a friend.
The friend asked the son, “Whose taxi is standing in your driveway?”
Son replied, “Don’t you know, my father is a f*#@$%%^g cabbie.”
Teja Singh heard this from the bathroom and ……
He was finished.
Iris versicolor grows all over San Francisco
Iris Versicolor
by William BOERICKE, M.D.
Presented by Médi-T
Blue Flag
Thyroid, pancreas, salivary, intestinal glands, and gastro-intestinal mucous membrane, are especially affected. Increases the flow of bile. Sick headaches and cholera morbus are a special therapeutic field for its action.
Head.–Frontal headache, with nausea. Scalp feels constricted. Right temples especially affected. Sick headache, worse rest; begins with a blur before eyes, after relaxing from a mental strain. Pustular eruption on scalp.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...