The article has been automatically translated into English by Google Translate from Russian and has not been edited.
Переклад цього матеріалу українською мовою з російської було автоматично здійснено сервісом Google Translate, без подальшого редагування тексту.
Bu məqalə Google Translate servisi vasitəsi ilə avtomatik olaraq rus dilindən azərbaycan dilinə tərcümə olunmuşdur. Bundan sonra mətn redaktə edilməmişdir.

Why is it so hard to love San Francisco?



You don't need to call anyone in San Francisco. Everyone comes here without special invitations. This city looks like it was rubbed with sandpaper. He is all naturally well-worn, coquettishly unkempt, elegantly dirty. This is a lot of charm. Thousands of amazing signs come from the seventies. Entire quarters are built up with mansions, decrepit even in appearance, but no one disfigures the walls with siding and does not pave the sidewalks with concrete “bone” tiles.

San Francisco is like okroshka - someone poured colorful houses on a plate, in a slide. The city is on the hills, and some of the streets are so steep that I was afraid to go down by bike. It seemed to me that if the brakes fail, I will drive by inertia all the way to Alaska. Nevertheless, people park every day at such a steepness, where personally I would walk in a climbing harness.

Parking is a local sport. Something between a lottery and a survival race. In search of a place, you can circle the streets until you run out of gas. My record was fifteen hours. I came to listen to the concert - unfortunately, the show was in the city center and during the gay pride. With an instant throw, I took the spot that 5 Latino girls in the SUV were aiming at. At first they tried to put pressure on my conscience and remind me of manners. But we realized that the case does not burn out. They made 3 circles and each time they stopped to send me in 5 votes. Why were they so disassembled? Because they had an hour and a half of meaningless driving around Market Street ahead of them.

I love San Francisco very much and I am very unoriginal in my love. But this is one of the cities that are good to love in the distance or being a tourist. God help you, if you decide to live here as it should.

Moscow can turn as many eyes as it is, indignant about overpopulation. At the same time, Moscow is building one Mytishchi for others, not stopping to groan. In San Francisco this is impossible. The city lies on a small peninsula, like a pizza on a shovel, and it has nowhere to grow. There is no institute for registration here, registration is not required for work and you will not frighten anyone away.



Historically, the impoverished artistic public and hippies lived here, but when Silicon Valley began, ITh-smart people drove here and twisted the entire demographics. The Latino from time immemorial served both the first and second.

Today it seems to me that with such a population’s profit, people will soon fall into the ocean from the edges of San Francisco, as in a disaster film.

Housing prices and demand have become the subject of bitter jokes. A surrender announcement collects 200 responses within 10 minutes. With impunity, San Francisco homeowners began to behave like feudal lords. I wouldn't be surprised if they introduce prima nocta soon. Landlords don't invest a dime in repairs, you can't get through to them, or maybe they just hire someone in Afghanistan to answer calls. The tenant dials the number, listens to gibberish in Pashto, hangs up and already fixes, patches and paints himself. They can ask from the apartment for any reason - if you are single or married, the price of gas has risen, the monsoon has come. The monsoon is gone - and you are on the street.

To live in San Francisco, one must desperately dream of living here. Otherwise, you won't have the patience to persuade yourself. Three years ago, my friends paid $ 1300 a month for a small room - how much is it today? I'm afraid even to think. Two more people lived in their apartment, for four there was 1 kitchen and a bathroom. I pay exactly half the price in Santa Cruz.

At the same time, people somewhere in North Carolina look at us all as idiots, because they live for $ 500 in a three-room apartment with a pool, a garage and a footman.

One of the former mayors of San Francisco guessed to build a so-called “social housing” in the very center. Translated into human, this means quarters for the poor. The first time, driving there on a bicycle, I decided that I was in a parallel universe. I passed the smashed City Hall, the opera building in the lantern bows and with the coffin on the roof, and at the very next traffic light a policeman “Ford Crown Victoria” suddenly saw. Beside him, face down, two black men were handcuffed.



It was a surrealistic journey: dirty houses, vacant lots covered with a rabbit, and shops with booze were all around. Muddy characters stood in the corners with cups for handouts. One of the brothers slept right on the ground.

The city is full of homeless people. Local authorities traditionally treat them gently, and the climate is good.

Even monuments are begging here - look at the Simon Bolivar Monument in the United Nations Square.

San Francisco is a city of a thousand and one eatery. Cafes and restaurants prop up each other like swallow nests. The Chinese restaurant serves spicy tofu with a smell of shit, there are no appliances in Ethiopian, and everyone eats helping the pieces of sour bread, like foam rubber. A festival of street kitchen is held a couple of times a year, under which overlap several blocks. There you can hang around 3 hours and never meet the same dish.

Here coffee is brewed, which can be used to treat clinical depression. The barista puts down the foam-painted phoenix cup, and I sip. And God the Father comes down to me and says: “What is this with you? - Mocha. - From the Blue Bottle, or what? Give me a sip, don’t press! ”. And I would give, and then his son Jesus and the Holy Spirit will still be attached, and give everyone a sip.

There is no need to list local sights, you know them without me. Much more interesting is what happens when thousands of people live on 7 per square kilometer. Many of them are talented and can offer something to the world. When I climb onto the roof, noting Cinco De Mayo with my friends, I see more 30 parties in 5 radius, on each of them 20 people. There, everyone is hitting each other with their elbows, dancing.

People populate every dog ​​kennel, as in the Crimea in Soviet times, but no one complains.

Because these 7 thousands of people per kilometer constantly muddle something: art projects, discos, galleries, bookstores or cafes for fans of sado-maso. Here live communities. By ethnicity, sexual orientation or political opinion.

On one of the famous gay streets of Castro, I once entered a crowded restaurant and, looking around, I did not see a single woman. There were 50 men who were served by another 10 men. Haight Street is full of second-hand shops, where the most fantastic fashionistas go along with tattered neo-hippies. There are areas where only Asians live and there you will not meet a white face.

San Francisco is a magnet city. It pulls people into the field of its gravity, and then they cannot escape. I know some who left forever several times, only to return - there is no other city like this in America. It is devoid of the smell of aggression that I felt in megacities.

You can drive through San Francisco for a couple of hours on a bicycle through and not meet a single boring place, panel building or lethargic sleeping quarters.

Instead of the suburban hells that have cursed generations of artists, there are forts, barracks, piers, and the island prison Alcatraz. Even old brick warehouses have strange charm and beauty. Magical place. But if you live, then somewhere in Berkeley. There at least you can park.

Kolya Sulima

All blogs author can read on his Facebook page

See also:

The glitz and poverty of Brighton Beach: how the legendary "Little Odessa" lives

Why, after a year of life, I still leave from New York

San Francisco residents will be able to receive free higher education


San Francisco Our in the USA loudspeakers personal experience
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