Here in the Richmond district, the foghorns can regularly be heard guiding boats to safety. When the wind is right, the foghorns are an especially intimate part of the neighborhood; if you didn’t know the bay was so close, you would think the foghorns were built into the houses and the streets.
I find myself on many late night walks here. Nothing compares to the crisp, cool, clean air, a misty breeze, steep yet inviting hills, and a beautiful, arboreal landscape to clear the mind. After midnight, it is silent in the Richmond district. Rarely can a car or pedestrian be seen. Most of the businesses have closed, most of the sidewalks have cleared, most of the lights have been turned off. It’s always surprising that a place with a large amount of people in a small amount of space can be this tranquil.
The walk through Sea Cliff and next to China Beach is serene. Few cars pass over the famous bridge looming in front of me, which is spectacularly lit against the mysterious darkness of the bay.
It is completely and utterly silent except the breeze and the echo of an eerie note intermittently resonating in the distant air, in the nearby air, and in every square inch of air in between: the foghorns.
It’s just me, the cool beauty of the night, and these foghorns.
Where are they guiding me?
How and why did they lead me back to San Francisco?
I wanted to find my own path in becoming a man; are these audible devices signaling me in the right direction? Are they serving their purpose?
I don’t know where I am going, but I am open to every possibility lying around the bend. I get so caught up in anxiety that I forget to stop and listen to the creativity in my mind earnestly awaiting its manifestation.
Part of me feels useless, powerless, and scared, but part of me believes that this thing I call life has a semblance of meaning hidden somewhere, and I am closer to finding it.
I’m still weak. I’m still clueless. I’m working hard, but I can’t do this alone. I need direction.
I’m a ship lost in the fog, and the foghorns are guiding me through this treacherous bay.