Wednesday, July 06, 2005

The Grove. This morning our breakfast adventures took us into the San Francisco Marina District. As I was driving down Chestnut, I spied a man lifting a very large white cup to his lips through a large window. Ah ha! A place open for breakfast. At 7:45 a.m. there is plenty of parking in the Marina, quite the difference from any later day parking experience. The Grove is a unique neighborhood cafe, with rough hewn wood furniture and eclectic old pieces with a woodsy feel decorating it. It it is well worn, first noticed by the threadbare cushions lining the bench in front of the window. One of the more remarkable pieces is a mirror that is framed in birch bark attached with copper brass tacks, and rimmed with rounded wood as though branches were just halved and used as is. It definitely had a masculine feel to it, and guess what? Other than the female bussing the tables, the entire place was filled with men. Now that's quite interesting considering the demographic of the Marina, reputed to have the highest concentration of single professional women in the city. (And by my evening observation, the highest ownership of high strung well dressed and groomed dogs.) Do all the women cook breakfast at home? Are these men all from the Marina, or did they gather there hoping to meet one of out of the throng of single women residing there? The man behind the counder was very friendly and asked me questions as I was ordering the Country Eggs (eggs - poached I think as they were just too perfectly round to be cracked naturally over the croissant - on top of croissant which is on top of a thin slice of Niman Ranch ham, topped with white cheddar and bits of green, broiled or toasted). He was trying to determine if I was a local or visiting... he brightened up when I said I was more local than not, but usually enjoyed dinner rather than breakfast in the Marina. Dad found a place on the wooden bench in front of the window with the cushions, and I sat opposite bringing him his steaming hot chocolate and my mocha. He chose to sit next the the two men eating in animated conversation, all suited up for the day. I couldn't help but overhear bits of their conversation and found it quite amazing how they kept swinging wildly from the very personal and intimate discussion of various women in their lives, and business pursuits, as in strategic, detailed marketing discussions. I found myself wondering if men have two distinct brains that they can switch back and forth from without any transition? I do know that I'm going to call my friend living in the Marina who is always wondering where to meet men... I'll have to tell her to just walk a couple blocks to The Grove between 7-8 a.m. and there's no doubt she'll be quite popular!

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