Posts/May, 2010/

The hunt for the perfect San Francisco Apartment

Friday, May 14th, 2010

In the past couple weeks, I have looked at at least 300 apartments on Craigslist. Of those three hundred, I have actually been interested in about ten. Of those ten, I have visited about seven. Of those seven, I was mildly interested in three after walking through the apartments. Of those three, I took Nik back to look at one. We both liked it, and took the necessary steps towards rental.

Photos from the apartments I visited last week

But, we didn’t stop looking. Monday evening I conducted another Craigslist search and found seven more apartments that met our requirements. I was really excited about one in particular, and scheduled a viewing of it for Tuesday morning. I even drew up what I imagined the floor plan would be based on the four Craigslist photos! Then, I scheduled three more viewings for Tuesday evening for good measure.

Tuesday morning we took Midnight (this is what I’m calling Nik’s scooter. He hasn’t decided on a name yet) over to the Inner Richmond. Our new transportation speed made us an hour early, so we stopped at Angelina’s Deli for coffee and pastries before heading up the hill. We met the rental agent (who was super nice and knowledgeable) and checked out the top floor, west facing, one bedroom/one bath + office with eat-in kitchen, roof access and minimal views of the Marin Headlands. The space was clean, bright, quiet and cozy. To top it off, the rent was $400 less than we had expected to pay!!!

Needless to say, we filled out the rental applications pronto, canceled the three showings later that evening, called off the deal for the apartment I found last week and took a celebration ride to Muir Beach!!! Later Tuesday evening, the rental agent emailed to tell us the good news that the owner had chosen us as his tenants, and we signed the lease yesterday morning. Our move-in date is May 18th, and we couldn’t be more excited!!! I cannot wait to have a place that is all ours. We will be sleeping on our own bed, cooking with our own pots, eating off of our own dishes, sitting on our own sofa, and drying off with our own bath towels!! We will even have room for guests to sleep over!

Nesting Season

These pigeons are nesting on the fire escape outside our Fillmore Apartment…and that is exactly what we will be doing soon!!!

Joy Ride

Wednesday, May 12th, 2010

Nik sitting proudly

For the past three months, we have traveled by foot, bus, train or zipcar, and on Saturday, Nik added a fifth transportation method! And this one is SO MUCH FUN!!!! It is the first bike we have ridden that carries both of us comfortably up and down the steepest hills a city can offer. Today, we took it for it’s inaugural drive, and had a blast!! I took a few videos while riding on the back that Nik will hopefully piece together soon. But until then, please enjoy my fiance sitting atop his beautiful blue steed!!

A peak of the ocean through the hills

The last week of April

Monday, May 3rd, 2010

The week beginning on April 25 and ending on May 2 was not a mind-blowing amazing week, but when I look back at it today, there were a lot of great moments.

1. I met a really cool guy that runs a custom cabinetry workshop in a neighborhood I had never been to before. His shop is just north of the I-280/Hwy 101 intersection on the back side of Bernal Heights. The main street, Cortland, is a cute one. The neighborhood is filled with smaller single family homes and backs into a hodgepodge of industrial buildings.

Across the way from the cabinet shop

Another Blue Dream House

I just like this house. The proportions, color, simplicity, planters, subtle asymmetry. Everything.

2. I continued the search for our perfect apartment. One that I was excited about turned out to be terrible. The management company didn’t even bother sweeping the floors before showing the apartment!! Honestly, if the apartment had been cleaned and the girl showing it would have shown the tiniest bit of excitement, we would have considered it.

The incredible view of downtown from the could-be-awesome-but-isn't apartment.

3. I ate lunch at the top of a hill. See, that’s my purse proving that I was there.


3. I visited the New San Francisco Federal Building. I don’t know why they have “new” in front of every single building reference. Perhaps there is an “old” SF Federal Building? Well, the building was designed by Morphosis which happens to be a pretty big named Los Angeles architecture firm. The building was cool, and I’m glad I visited.

Tip: If you walked past the building, you wouldn’t think you could go in, but you can. Just go through the entrance marked “visitors” and tell them that you want to see the building. The security guards are quite proud of it and will direct you to grab a “self guided tour” print out. Then you’re on your own to wander through the public spaces.

The main lobby

View of SOMA from the 12th Floor skybridge

4. Since I was in the neighborhood, I stopped by and looked at rooms at the Good Hotel on Mission St. I loved it. Part motor-lodge, part hostel, part designy boutique hotel. The only bad thing is the location. I would not want to walk back alone to my hotel room late at night near Mission & 5th. Too many crazies.

By the way, I have started wandering into hotels randomly whenever I pass just because I’m curious. I tell the front desk worker that I have friends visiting soon (which is always true!), and I would like to see a typical room. So far, they have handed me a key and maybe held on to my drivers license, and I have been free to check it out on my own.

be bed

The good toilet

5. Nik and I were walking to dinner and found ourselves in the middle of April’s Critical Mass! It is a monthly bike ride through San Francisco where the cyclists stop traffic simply by achieving a critical mass.

Critical Mass on the Embarcadero

6. We took a little day trip down Highway 1 to Santa Cruz so that I could serve tables at the Blue Moon Organics Farm for Outstanding in the Field. It was my first time serving since college. So that was almost seven years ago? Luckily, I didn’t mess anything up too bad! And boy was I exhausted by the end of the dinner. I haven’t been that tired in a long time.

7. I finally experienced one of Nik’s favorite spots in San Francisco, Baker Beach. He used to live in the Baker Beach Apartments and claims to have come down to this beach all the time after work and on weekends. Well, now I believe him!!! It is a beautiful stretch of sand with the perfect blend of view, cityscape, crashing waves and jolly good happy people. Yes, we did walk to the end, and saw a few exposed man-parts and lady parts. It’s all part of San Francisco!!

The sun grew a tail

The beautiful day at Baker Beach

A couple relaxing near by

Baker Beach from above

8. In the midst of a bus transfer at Union & Fillmore, we stopped for frozen yogurt at the Liquor Store. This is a new tradition that is probably short lived since our days at the Fillmore Street apartment are numbered, but it is one that I love. I always get a kids size peanut butter frozen yogurt. Sometimes I get toppings, like peanut butter cups! Sometimes I don’t. I tried to mix it up once with part peanut butter, part chocolate decadence, and I didn’t like the chocolate at all.

The best peanut butter frozen yogurt in town

9. We have also been talking about our wedding more and more. Still no date or location, but we have lots of great ideas.

10. Oh, and there are good things happening on the job fronts!!!

For Nik’s account of the weekend, click here: A weekend at Santa Cruz and Baker Beach

Archives for May, 2010
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