Today marks the 75th anniversary of the opening of the Golden Gate Bridge. San Francisco has many popular attractions, like Fisherman’s Warf and Alcatraz, but none symbolizes the Bay Area quite like the Golden Gate Bridge.
In 1999, when I moved to San Francisco, I lived in an apartment in Russian Hill, and from the roof of my building, I had a clear view of the Bridge. Many Fridays after work, I would stand on the rooftop, drink a beer, and watch the fog pour over the Presidio and envelope the Bridge.
After our engagement, Stacie and I moved into an apartment just around the corner from my first apartment. From our kitchen window, we had the same spectacular view that I had from my old rooftop. There are worse ways to spend a Saturday morning than sharing a cup of coffee with your new bride while staring at the Golden Gate Bridge. But when we found out we were having twins, Stacie and I traded our three-story walk up, two bedroom apartment for a house in the East Bay, and we said good-bye to the Bridge.
I still work in the city, and our family often drives in on the weekends. One of the activities my boys like best is to go to Crissy Field, play in the sand, and run away from the water as the waves roll up the beach. Sometimes the weather is warm, and sometimes it’s cool. Sometimes it’s sunny and other times foggy. But always, the Golden Gate Bridge is our magnificent backdrop.
I am thankful to the city for much of the happiness in my life. I met Stacie here, all of our kids were born in San Francisco, and I have made many great friends in the Bay Area. A team of amazing doctors, nurses and support staff at UCSF gave me a new lease on life. The Hipping Post would not have been the same without them.
The city is in the midst of a day-long celebration. According to the official 75th Anniversary website, the festivities are “designed not only to commemorate the Bridge but also to celebrate its unsurpassed setting and unique place in the hearts and minds of Bay Area residents and fans from around the world.” That sounds right to me. The Golden Gate Bridge symbolizes San Francisco, and reminds me of all that is good in life: my family, my friends, and my health.
Happy 75th Anniversary, Golden Gate Bridge!
P.S. I did the above sketch, using only my finger, on Stacie’s iPad, in an app called Paper by FiftyThree. It’s a great way to keep a sketch journal, but be careful, it’s addictive.