My pal Brian mentioned an old-looking, domed building he spotted on a hill off the freeway (I guess it would have been the 5 Freeway–shout out if I’m wrong). So on this bike crash Brian came along and we checked out the destination, not knowing what it was, and purposely leaving it a surprise. For all I knew it could have been the home of a Tony Montana wannabe, or a Church of Scientology. We would see.
So we headed from Location X in Normal Heights in a general, westerly direction, toward Mission Hills, up some grueling inclines, regretfully bypassing Old Town (that’ll be another trip), and stopping only to admire this view from Sunset Cliffs:
View from Sunset Cliffs, overlooking Mission Bay. I'll have to check this out sometime during an actual sunset.
We didn’t know exactly where we were going, but after some extended uphill pedaling and cutting through makeshift dirt trails, we were relieved to find the reasonably flat ground of Presidio Park, which looked to be mostly green grass and picnic grounds–and this statue:
But poking around a little we saw the Mystery Building from the rear, though a gap in the trees. Being worn and disoriented, the sight was like beacon..
The razor wire, to the right, looks foreboding, but I think that’s just to keep young riff raff form climbing onto the roof (20 year ago I might relate to the impulse). There’s actually an inviting, though steep, trail that we walked our bikes down to get a closer look.
Turns out we were at the Juniperro Serra Museum, that it’s always been a museum (not an old mission like some mistake it for), that a presidio is a Mexican military emcampment, that there is a ton of history on this hill, and that it would cost $6 if we wanted to go inside. So we poked a little more around the free areas and didn’t learn much at all, which is OK because City Bike Crashes aren’t about book learnin’ anyway.
So my pal Brian and I pedaled back through Mission Hills, mostly downhill this time. There was a high-pitched, loud flash of sound that I swear sounded like glass breaking but turned out to be Brian’s tire blowing out.
So we walked our bikes a few blocks down Washington St. to the nearest bike shop. While waiting for the bike to get serviced I asked the guy why my Trek is so off balance that I can’t ride the darned thing no-handed. He said there were no major problems and I shouldn’t ride no handed anyway — an amusing answer that made me laugh.
So that little fiasco cost Brian about 30 bucks, but at least he had a sweet new road tire and I had a little something extra for the day’s narrative. That’s how I look at it.