February 2009

Found 5 blog entries for February 2009.

There are some serious benefits about living on an island like Alameda.  The major one is that we are, by definition surrounded by water!  That allows us to have beachside parties and picnics on a regular basis.  Since our weather is so moderate, we can spend more time on the sand than most other land bound people. One of the most amazing stretches of water can be seen at the extreme end of Harbor Bay Parkway. Here is a view that stretches from San Francisco to the Hayward/San Mateo Bridge.  On a sunny day, with the water sparkling, you could be anywhere in the world--Italy, Greece, etc..

This stretch of land invites bike riders, walkers and joggers, or the slower paced dog walker.  There are pleasant sidewalks and palm trees.  Little spits of land jut

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So the auction for the 'perfect' house in Berkeley had some bumps along the way. At the last minute, a termite report was produced which detailed $14,000 to $24,000 in repairs. Personally, I would never trust a report with that much leeway, especially one that came in the day before the auction. The auctioneer had previously assured me that the termite work had been cleared two years ago so this was troubling to me.

Plenty of people showed up in the rain to bid but ultimately the home didn't sell. The reserve was $525,000, which might have been fine if there was no additional work to be preformed, but that termite report was looming. The home is back on the market for $525,000 or best offer. Good luck to the sellers because they have had the hardest time

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It's not every day that a nice home in the Bay Area is auctioned off. Usually auctioned homes are the dregs of the area, those that no one wanted to buy on the regular market, a cross between a fixer and a teardown. That’s why I was pleasantly surprised to see such a 'perfect' home in Berkeley ready for auction. The owners had obviously taken care of the home, and had painstakingly addressed every detail. The roof and foundation were new. The floors were freshly sanded and finished. The bathroom had been remodeled and the large kitchen had been tastefully finished. In the well manicured backyard there was a studio trimmed with wood that was used as an office.
So why was the house being auctioned off? The owners had always paid their mortgage, their bank

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It's windy and chilly, and I am standing on the flight deck of the aircraft carrier Hornet (CV-12) which is berthed at the home of the old Alameda Naval Air Station in Alameda.

Now a floating museum that is open to the public, it is an amazing tribute to all the sailors and marines who served on her.  Commissioned in 1943, she was active in World War II, the Vietnam War, and was selected to retreive the Apollo astronauts when they "splashed down" on their return from the moon.

While admiring the amazing view of San Francisco Bay, I watch people of all ages and sizes come up the gangplank to visit.  As I return to the interior, I hear people talking about signing up for a family overnight on board.  What a thrill that will be for everyone to spend the

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I recently agreed to meet a friend at the Ferry Building in San Francisco, and decided that it might be fun to take a ferry boat ride across the bay to get there.  I was very pleased with my choice, because once I boarded the ferry, I went instantly into tourist mode.  It's not often that most of us get out on the water, and this ride takes you into the middle of everything nautical.  As you leave, small private boats, both power and sail, are moving past you towards the estuary entrance.  On the Oakland side, a huge container ship is off loading its carge. 

Once underway, the boat moves quickly, and if you want to go upstairs and outside, a fresh sea breeze can chill the unwary.   You rush by the Bay Bridge with its usual load of cars, and you can see

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