San Francisco Rain

Posted on by Lee Richmond
During my second week in San Francisco, the winter rains began. I guess I thought that California didn’t really have winter; it certainly hadn’t occurred to me that winter would be day after day of rain. And what rain! San Francisco rain was hard and cold and constant. It came down in sheets — and then it came down harder.
     I hadn’t packed much, but I did have a raincoat. Every morning I left my cheap weekly-rate hotel room and walked through the rain to Hayes-Bickford for bacon and eggs and the San Francisco Chronicle. I skipped the news and turned directly to the Help Wanted section: my money was going fast, and I had to find a job.
    I was accustomed to Boston newspapers and wasn’t prepared for the skinny Chronicle and its job section, which ran to 3/4 of a page on a good day. There was nothing I was remotely qualified for. Discouraged, I looked out the window. I had never seen rain come down so hard. Then it came down harder. The next week, I stopped ordering the bacon. 
    Finally I applied through a temp agency for the position of “Warehouseman.” Vern was a skinny little gay guy who I think hired me for my looks, because it sure wasn’t for any experience with rubber drive belts or warehouse shipping. Day after day, it was just Vern in his heated office and me in the cold warehouse staring out at the rain. Then the rain came down harder. This California adventure wasn’t working out exactly the way I had hoped …

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