Today is an unusual summer day for me. I can’t hear what’s become the normal accompaniment to my workday. Even after two years in the Bay Area, I find the local microclimate astonishing. My office is in the Presidio, with a wonderful view out the window of the Golden Gate. Many summer days my office is in full sunshine, but the bridge – less than a mile away – is wreathed in fog. Hence the foghorn.
The microclimate also means that the Presidio usually has a bit of a chill from the cold sea waters not far from our door (not today – it’s hot by San Francisco standards). Downtown San Francisco is a bit warmer and when I cross the Bay Bridge to Berkeley, it’s often another 10 degrees warmer. That puts Berkeley at the perfect temperature, high 70s, perhaps just into the 80s. But if I travel through the Caldecott Tunnel, maybe three miles from my house, the temperature can go up another 10 to 20 degrees. Utterly bizarre.
(Incidentally, there’s another sound of summer my wife and I love: crickets. They’re making wonderful noises at night in our street.)