Wednesday, December 26, 2007

First Christmas Eve in San Fran

Our first Christmas Eve in San Fran! The day dawned bright and sunny.

We spent the morning sitting by a creek. Temperatures were officially 54 degrees in the shade but in a sheltered spot in the sun it felt more like the 70s, while people back home were shivering.

This was a Christmas Eve like no other. No huge tree with piles of presents beneath, no last-minute checking that all the Christmas fare is there, no final preparing of the home.

We are slaving over a hot wooden bench...and eating out!

By early evening the stores were closing but there were throngs of people spilling out clutching those 'last' presents. Union Square, too, was popular, camera flashes sparking into the night air. Perhaps many were tourists, capturing their pre-Christmas pics of the brilliant decorations.

With a quieter square, though, suddenly something struck me. The historic St Francis Hotel that dominates one end was in darkness. Not a Christmas light or decoration to be seen over its vast dark face. It stood St Scrooge! Lights of the world would be something of which its namesake would approve.

As we made our way onto Market Street, we glanced up. Two shadowy figures stood on the roof of the Westfield Mall dangling an enormous red 'Sale' sign over the side of Nordstrom.

With no sight or sound of Father Christmas and his reindeer. And those 'last' presents not yet wrapped or given.

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