Mr. Franklin went and got himself the sweetest car little car imaginable and to celebrate in true 1966 fashion we went out for a drive. Headed over the Golden Gate in search of a community of "dock houses in a marsh" that I'd heard about from a friend at work. Turned out to be a community called the Greenbrae Boardwalk where all the houses sit on stilts and connect via a long narrow boardwalk, all elevated above marshland. Some even have docks in back where the water is deeper and clear, giving straight access to the Marin side of the bay. Totally amazing set up and really sweet little mid-century houses, a bunch of which reminded me of old whitewashed boat clubs. Didn't take any pictures since it was technically a private residence area and sometimes that just feels creepy. Might look into housing prices though, it was pretty damn cool. Also had an odd moment when faced with the understanding that a building I've long admired from across the water and always meant to check out (thinking it was abandoned) is actually San Quentin Prison. Weird. Apparently the prison complex was built in 1852 and is still maintained within the original buildings, hence the reason its so attractive and sits on an unbelievable piece of realty. Also weird to find out that Richard Ramirez is still in there. Stopped by to see if they have a visitor's center and found out that in fact they do, though its called a museum and is only open on weekdays.
Tucked that info away for another time and drove on to the Marin Civic Center, another place I've always admired but never gotten out of the car for. Its a perfect example of architecture I love, built to complement and beautify the existing landscape instead of carve away or re-create it. This time we stopped and managed to get inside just before closing time.
Such an incredible building designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. It was his last commission and wasn't actually started until 1960 just after his death.
I also love it when places are designed right down to the shelves and furnishings, it just makes it so in-keeping with itself which in turn gives it a timeless allure. At least to nerds like me.
I do really love that spire.
Back out on the open road, this time to China Camp for a bit of nature (and hope of a grilled cheese sandwich).
Kind of forgot how nice China Camp is, especially for wintertime camping. Lots of trails and the old fish camp remains, its definitely got its own charm. Perhaps it was the old building that did it and in the end we opted to treat ourselves to a nice end-of-day dinner at the Presidio Social Club. Aviation cocktail, flatiron steak with smashed peas and an instantaneous seat at the bar. Such a fine place.
Leave your stepping stones behind, something calls for you? Take a short vacation day across the bridge, there's plenty of detours off Highway 101 and most all of its close and marked by road signs.