2 Dec.

We had an early start today to get over to Jen’s place in Presidio on the other side of the city from North Beach.

As that makes clear, her offer of a place to stay wasn’t just a drunken throwaway.

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This beach doesn’t have much going for it…

After we dropped our bags off, via a quick stop at the nearby Baker Beach, we took Jon to the airport. I cannot imagine how he must be feeling to have the trip to come crashing down around him after just 17 days. I also don’t want to imagine the debauched ways he’s going to make up for lost time when he decides to head to Thailand with the lads following their time in India.

Perhaps that why he seemed in such good spirits as we waved him off.

“It feels like we’re a man down,” was how Steve described it. That’s probably because we are, Steve.

From there, and being unable to get into Jen’s until later on, we visited Haight-Ashbury to get our flower on. The area’s shops retain a bohemian facade but most definitely not the spirit of its ’60s heyday; they may well sell paraphernalia from back then, but capitalism was alive and kicking.

I tried on a suede fringed jacket, complete with a massive stain, which was only $600. In another shop, Nick alerted me to a pair of Converse All-Star pumps that were used and decorated in Biro scribbles, which cost more than a brand-new pair you could ruin yourself.

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Nothing says “counterculture” like a Ben & Jerry’s shop.

It’s worth visiting the place to say you’ve been (and we saw someone who offered us “a big fattie for five bucks” in Garberville a few days ago), but that’s about it.

Next up was Golden Gate Park, which is amazing. We had a good walk, learning a new thing about Nick as we strolled: No one likes them, but he has an irrational hatred of drum circles.

Phillipa was dropped off near Jen’s so we could get a cab (estimated between five and 30 minutes) to Chestnut Street for scoops. It was a bit upmarket, and the bars were geared more toward eating. We saw The Matrix, the spiritual home of psychedelia in the U.S., but it wasn’t open and didn’t look anything like a club the likes of Jefferson Airplane would frequent.

Jen finished work at midnight, and we stayed up chatting to her ’til gone three. She used to work for United! Tripping will definitely take off…much like Jon earlier *sad face emoji*

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