So after almost three years of living in beautiful Russian Hill, what with its…hills, restaurants, views, architecture, staircases, bars, cable cars and even the world’s most famous crooked street, I am moving to the Tenderloin. Except for the facts that it, too, is very densely populated and is also downtown (whereas Russian Hill was at least “downtownish”), the Tenderloin is the polar opposite of Russian Hill. While Russian Hill is mostly filled with 20-30something yuppies and professionals (not to be confused with the Southern Californians in Cow Hollow and the Marina), the Tenderloin is filled with working class folks, minorities, and the homeless, not to mention a smattering of ne’er-do-wells.
Although I certainly appreciate how nice Russian Hill is, on a rare occasion it is too nice for its own good. For example, the upscale grocery store does not sell American cheese. I thoroughly enjoy the grocery store, but not selling American cheese just kind of screams of pretension. And I only know of one sandwich shop, some five blocks away. In fact, a middle eastern sandwich and salad shop has closed down a few blocks from me and replaced with – another – wine bar. A local antique store has been replaced with a lingerie store. However slowly it is changing, the neighborhood is certainly changing.
Contrast this with the new neighborhood. The downside is certainly that it is not nearly as nice as Russian Hill, not by a long shot. The Tenderloin is essentially the homeless capital of San Francisco, a city with arguably the worst homeless problem in the United States. However, the upside is that the neighborhood definitely feels more “real.” There are several sandwich shops and cheap restaurants in the area. I am sure you could find American cheese at any of the 5-10 corner stores in a two-block radius. Things like a community center and the YMCA are just a block away.
Other perks are that the new place is just a 5-minute walk from work compared to my current 35-minute walk. Not that I mind my walk now. It is actually very nice getting that exercise. I am sure I’ll find other ways to get that exercise. Getting home from school will now take 30-45 minutes compared with 45-75 minutes. That is a big plus. I am very close to a BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) station. Just a several-minute walk from the main library and City Hall. Actually, I think I will be using the City Hall steps to run up in the morning.
As for the apartment itself, the building is very nice. It is nicer than my current building and the building and the apartment certainly have more character. Higher ceilings, bay windows. I am now on the third floor with a view of the street. My current apartment is quiet whereas the new one is noisier, which I view as a good thing. I think it is good to always have some life and activity going on around me. And of course if I need to drown it all out I can just put on some headphones.
The most important reason on why I am moving is because I will be saving a few hundred dollars in rent. That will be nice. Without further ado, here are some pictures.
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