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Sistahs Steppin In Pride parade, Oakland

September 9th, 2006

Good Weekend
Saturday. Back from Nevada City this mid-afternoon having stayed at The National Hotel, the only lodging with rooms available when you book six hours before check in. The comments I found on the web were interesting. Funky was about the most positive description I could find. Still, it's an historic nineteenth century building with a great bar, good parking, all kinds of balconies and back doors and elaborate lobbies and small high ceiling rooms that were clean and serviceable. A good choice, since we were able to walk from the hotel to the birthday party (important when you're drunk as a skunk returning to your room in a strange town). The kind of hotel we were told where on another day you'd find a line of motorcycles parked out front, but fine for the mildly adventurous.

We discovered (I drove up with a friend and his son, hence the need for two rooms) there was a parade planned for later today (I think it was Saturday, but maybe Sunday) and an annual Civil War buff's re-enactment of a battle planned at a nearby park (which explained those people going to breakfast this morning in full Confederate drag, their wives and girlfriends in hoop skirts and bonnets). A little strange to run into people dressed for a different era so early in the morning, wondering if it was something I'd consumed the night before. That "Transporter" concoction MRB was passing around at the party maybe. Something extra in the Johnny Walker we had at the hotel bar to finish the evening after the party. These things can run together in odd combinations and getting older is no guarantee you can't be ambushed in a California turn of the century hotel.

Anyway, we might have stayed the full weekend had we known about the parade (which would have passed right in front of the hotel) or the Civil War affair but, all in all, with or without minnie balls, an excellent trip on a very good weekend.

The photograph was taken at the Sistahs Steppin' in Pride Parade in Oakland a Nikon D2X mounted with a 70-200mm 2.8 VR Nikkor lens at 1/1250th, f 2.8, ISO 100.