Wednesday, March 28, 2007
San Francisco, CA, March 2007 [Click all images to enlarge]
I'll admit to my little boy fascination with large pieces of engineering. The thought of suspending 4200 feet of road over a heaving chunk of sea is pretty cool no matter how you slice it. That it was done in 1937, before the advent of computers and all the modern-day tools of design, makes it that much more extraordinary.
But until yesterday, the Golden Gate Bridge existed for me solely in theory. As much as I had read about this structure and understood the subtle and not-so-subtle nuances of its creation, I had never seen it live. So when I found myself with a couple of free hours in the afternoon, I pestered the concierge for instructions on how to get there, hopped a bus and was on my way.
As I got off the bus and turned the corner in the Marina district, I had to pause as I first saw the familiar shape in the distance. Pictures don't do it justice. They never do. You never know how you'll feel until you're actually there. And I felt...small. It was at least a couple of miles away from me, and it still took up a large swath of my vision, dominating the huge gap between the two sides of the bay. No one else seemed to be staring at it on this sunny afternoon. I seemed to be the only person who found this anything but routine.
The technical side of me was disappointed with the light. Lots of haze, bad backlight and not enough time to really get up close and personal with the structure. But I was just being nitpicky: I was here, and I was privileged to spend a few solitary moments thinking about what I would take home with me from this experience.
More images from the road soon...
Your turn: You're far away from the people who matter. You see something neat. How do you bring the experience back to them?