My Muse is satiated on beauty and inspiration; drunk on the energy of friendship and San Francisco. She and I went to The City on Saturday for a friend's baby Christening on Easter Sunday but decided to go down a day early to soak up some of that Bay Area vibe, and visit friends I haven't seen in three years. We dropped off my daughter with her dad, parked the van near the apartment I was staying at, and then hiked down to 19th avenue to catch the 28 bus toward Fort Funston. It was one of those warm, sunny days when smiling people crowd the sidewalks and the bay is full of sail boats. We walked over the hill to the Wharf where I was meeting my friends at the Wipe Out bar. I haven't been to The Wharf for years and couldn't resist walking all the way to Pier 39, dodging pedestrians and bicycles, sometimes walking in the road to get past the crowds gathered around street performers. My Muse stayed beside me, her hair flowing out like a net gathering creative energy, the snakes sticking their blood-red tongues out to taste the smell of people. I was late meeting my friends. My Muse decided to wander around the pier more, her eyes and ears wide with anticipation. A drag queen quartet grabbed her attention and she said, "See you later," as she vanished.
My friends found me at the front door of the pub and led me to a spot at the bar where we stayed for three hours, chatting, drinking, and laughing over old times. The three of us worked together at Renaissance Faire for many years and those two are more my family than just friends. After the bar they took me to the Rainforest Cafe, a cacophonies restaurant complete with a water fall and animatronic gorillas and elephants. My Muse found us after dinner and joined our evening walk along the water toward Market street where I would catch the Muni. Suddenly, she gripped my arm and whispered, "Look." Rising over the bay bridge, a full, golden moon shone brightly through the spans of the bridge. I pointed it out to my friends and they took a picture. You can't really see the moon very clearly, but the shot reminds me of that moment. Another full moon spent with my two dear friends. How many moons have we shared?
The next day I caught the bus again to Grace Cathedral on Nob Hill, a massive stone, Gothic, European inspired church, with stained glass windows copied from Medieval images. I arrived just as the procession of the priests began. Long robed priests carrying incense and candles filed through the aisle toward the altar, singing as they walked. I couldn't find my friends until we all gathered for the Christening. Grace Cathedral baptizes people four times a year, so my friends brought their three month old daughter to be baptized on Easter. I finally saw them opposite the Baptismal font and saw their daughter for the first time dressed in a white Christening gown. They took their turn with 20 other families and when everyone lined up again to return to their seats, I pushed my way through the crowd to join them. We sat together and listened to the Easter service and beautiful choir. My Muse wandered about the church, pressing her hands against the smooth stone, breathing in the age and color of the windows, and shivering every time the Gregorian sounding choir sang.
After the service was a brunch celebration at the Beach Chalet. Good food and not too pricey, with a lovely view. The weather was again warm and the wind mild, so we all walked on the beach where we showed the baby the ocean for the first time. I've been friends with her mother since the 7th grade, so this little girl feels like my niece. I remembered when my own daughter saw the ocean for the first time. She was wrapped up warmly in a front facing snuggle pack and she kicked her feet and laughed when she saw the ocean waves hissing on the sand at my feet.
I drove home after that and spent a quiet Easter dinner with Rick. The next day I went to Orr Hot Springs with another friend and spent the entire day soaking and lounging, watching the sky, talking and eating good food. My Muse sat by the cold pool and watched the white blossoms fall from the trees and land softly on the water.
By the time I got home, my Muse was practically drunk on creative energy and passed out on my bed.
Today, her skin is glowing with the hum of creativity. The snakes are singing softly. We haven't started writing anything yet, but we are both filled with enough energy to write four novels.