Sights and Sounds of Berkeley

Sunrise street view in Berkeley
The view walking from the airbnb to my son’s right before sunrise.

I’m in Berkeley staying a few blocks from my son’s house to take care of him post foot surgery. I hang out in the daytime with him, helping him do the things he can’t do himself.

fall leaves in Berkeley.
I love the color of fall leaves. We don’t see this in the Sonoran Desert.

I cook his oatmeal in the morning, walk to a local coffee shop to get a “pour over” coffee — whatever that is. I refill his water, make sure he’s comfortable and help him with whatever else he needs like hooking him up to his ice machine throughout the day.

His girlfriend and I go for coffee and breakfast for ourselves at a cafe my daughter and Waffles like best. We sit with them outside and chat in the morning sun. My daughter was exposed to COVID twice in the past two weeks. First time after her friend’s funeral, the test was negative. She doesn’t have the test results yet for the second exposure which happened at work. That’s why we meet outside and she sits at a table by herself where we talk and laugh and spend a tiny bit of time together.

Latte from Fellini's.
My latte is delicious and pretty.
Tree decorated with a face.
My son’s girlfriend and I noticed this decorated yard and tree on the way to coffee.

My airbnb is on the border of Oakland about six blocks from my son’s house. The first night, I was woken up to yelling, screaming, slamming doors and other frightening sounds between a man and a woman. The next night at 1 a.m., a car pulled up playing rap music so loud that it shook the bedroom window.

Angel's trumpets
Angel’s trumpets we saw on a morning walk.

The airbnb is spotless, somewhat spartan and has all I need. I’ve only been there in the dark to sleep. I arrive after dark and I leave in the morning before sunrise to walk to my son’s house. I’m left with a kind of creepy feel, since I haven’t been there in the daylight and I’m treated to mysterious sounds of the night. I’m sure broad daylight would erase that vibe.

yarn bombing, love on a stop sign.
I saw yarn bombing for the first time. “Why do they want to stop love?” my son’s girlfriend asked.
Waffles the Pug at a cafe in Berkeley.
Waffles at his favorite cafe. They know him by name and always give him a treat.

Have you been exposed to COVID or tested for COVID? Does it seem to you like more and more people are getting it? When you visit family and friends are you concerned about COVID and are there precautions you take?

On this trip, I wouldn’t have thought about COVID at all except for my daughter’s two recent exposures. Another strange thing was how busy the airport in Phoenix was. Seating was full at gates and groups of people were left standing or sitting on the floor.

14 thoughts on “Sights and Sounds of Berkeley

  1. Ooh, Angel’s Trumpets! Always a nice find 🙂 I’ve been exposed to COVID several times in the past few months and every time, my work sends me for a test. Depending on the severity of the exposure (seems to be dependent on time spent – over 15 minutes with someone who tests positive within 3 days of our time together = close exposure) sometimes two tests, at intervals, are required before I can return to work. I am of the opinion that all of the precaution has just prolonged the inevitable. I guess time will tell.

  2. I think very few people are going to be spared unless they literally sit in their house and do nothing. You know my word for the year is endemic

  3. Mom was at our house for Christmas and a week later got sick. All of us have been tested and hubby and I are waiting for our results but have had no symptoms and all the kids are negative. Hubby actually had covid December 2020 and we had to postpone our Christmas until New Years Eve. Hoping your daughter is okay. I would be scared to death to walk around those streets at night! Stay safe!

    • I’m only walking in the early mornings. I get a ride back at night from my son’s girlfriend. It’s hard to understand how some people are getting sick and other’s not.

  4. Love posts like this because I get to have a feel of what things are like over there. Don’t think I’ll be able to visit US so it’s nice to ‘visit’ your part of the world. Wishing your son a speedy recovery!

  5. Most of the people I know personally and most of the people they know personally have been able to dodge covid infection so far. Exposure may be another matter but still I consider myself and my loved ones to be among the lucky 80% of Americans who have not become infected.

    One of my friends who moved from San Francisco back to her hometown of St. Louis had planned to drop in on me for a nostalgic visit here (we both got our MBAs from UCLA which is how we met) on her travel leg between SF and Palm Springs where another of her old friends lives. She cancelled that part because my mom’s funeral was on what would have been the second day of her stay with me.

    She still went to PS, just a week earlier than she had originally planned, where she enjoyed the 80 degree weather before returning to StL where it was 21 and she had to shovel snow off her patio! She also commented on how crowded the airport was in Phoenix which was her stopover between PS and StL.

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