Location, Location, Location (Solitude)
There are a lot of beautiful places in San Francisco, and many of them appear in my novel “Solitude”… although, granted, they are frequently on fire or infested with feral rats, cats and dogs that want to tear your throat out… they are beautiful, nonetheless. This blog is dedicated to some of those beautiful locations.
The San Francisco Main Public Library
One of our heroes, Gerry, is a homeless guy who sleeps outdoors in the Civic Center area near the San Francisco Main Public Library (http://sfpl.org/). The building’s exterior architecture, while interesting, is no where near as exciting to me as it’s interior. The inside of the library centers around a spiral shape encasing a sunny domed atrium. The building itself is square, but is filled with numerous windows, creating an atmosphere filled with natural light. The spiral shell logo for the building depicts the view of the ceiling looking from the ground up.
If you’ve read the book, you already know that Gerry has an unpleasant encounter with some dogs. Here is another, earlier scene featuring the same pack of dogs running into a different character:“It was a pack of wild dogs, but they just looked very wrong. Some of the dogs were big, others little, they all looked like they were once someone’s pet. His first instinct was to laugh – a dirty miniature poodle with a grown-out poodle cut was dragging a battered pink leash attached to an equally pink collar from which dangled a torn pink bow. But as they got closer, he could see some of them foaming at the mouth and others had odd eyes –pale yellow eyes exuding a scary, unnatural glow. And that snapped him out of it. “
Now doesn’t it all sound a lot less scary now that you know that Gerry is underneath the gorgeous skylight shown to the right while running away from the homicidal canines?
The Bay Bridge
Another memorable moment in “Solitude” was the point where Shane, another character, was crossing the Bay Bridge when all of the sudden… everyone on the bridge disappeared. But see.. their cars didn’t disappear, so Shane was forced to do some emergency demolition-style driving through the crashing, burning vehicles as they smashed into one another and piled up in various dangerous configurations due to their recently attained driver-free status. Not long ago… back in October 2009, a cable on the Bay Bridge snapped, and the bridge was closed for a while during repairs. I can neither confirm nor deny that is why the bridge was so empty when my friend Sick YG took this eerie photo of the empty Bay Bridge.
The situation when Shane was on the bridge in the book was a bit more intense, though: because there were still cars. Here is an excerpt:“This happened almost instantly, but it seemed like minutes in Shane’s shell- shocked mind. Multiple vehicles ahead of him began to collide. Every other car on the Bay Bridge headed in the San Francisco direction started behaving erratically, as if the drivers had all simultaneously fallen asleep at the wheel. The vehicle immediately in front of him veered to the right, smashing into a stalled car the next lane over, which folded like an accordion. “
Doesn’t it sound a lot more relaxing knowing it was all happening with the gorgeous views of San Francisco and Alcatraz Island as a scenic back drop, on the beautiful bridge in the photo?
Solitude now has it’s own Facebook page, HERE:
~ by Sumiko Saulson on September 1, 2012.