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Why San Francisco’s Indian Summer is Better Than Real Summer

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San Francisco’s weather is something people like to talk about…ad nauseam. I find that places that have very little change in weather, and for the most part are fairly temperate, tend to be the places where people talk about weather the most. This fair city falls into this category with one exception…Fog. Fog is something people in SF not only come to live with, but come to love. So, for us to have a few weeks in late September/early October where it dissipates and give us some sun, and a warm barmy breeze, we go absolutely nuts. It’s the one time of year that allows you to BBQ without wearing a sweater, even in The Sunset.

Wikipedia (because my depth of research knows no bounds) refers to an Indian Summer as, “a heat wave that occurs in the autumn.  It refers to a period of above-normal temperatures, accompanied by dry and hazy conditions, usually after there has been a killing frost.” In San Francisco however, its a little bit more than that. For us that golden bit of sunshine reminds us why we live here, and that we are in fact, still in California.

So why is this time of year so great you ask?

All the tourists went home. California’s tourist season is summertime; hordes of people from all over the world come here expecting bronzed bodies, warm breezes and celebrities by the barrel full. Unfortunately for them…they come to San Francisco. You know the ones; they find themselves shivering to death down by Powell waiting for a $20 cable car ride. During the months of September and October, however you can safely walk the streets, in your shorts and flip flops and not have to stop or bump into any gawking tourists.

Besides the lack of tourists, why else you ask, why else?

There’s so much shit happening! Sure OutsideLands was in summer, but lets face it OutsideLands is kind of like the cable car of of summer. It’s overpriced and leaves you feeling like you missed something.  However a couple of other gems to tick off the Indian Summer calendar include:

Hardly Strictly Bluegrass:

Yes, I know, it’s hardly strictly, even remotely resembles bluegrass and its probably ‘not what it was,’ but in case you forgot, rather than forking out a bazillion dollars to go and vomit in a trash can while Kayne abuses someone, this event is entirely FREE. That’s right folks, a 3 day music festival in the heart of our city and you don’t have to pay a dime. If that ain’t worth 11 months of fog I don’t know what is.

But wait there’s more:

If bluegrass ain’t your think, and you’re more a bondage and S&M type well:

Folsom Street Fair Could be right up your alley. Literally. This is the worlds largest leather street fair, isn’t that freakin awesome! Whatever your kink or your fetish, they pretty much cater to it. And unlike the rest of San Francisco these days, you can still be naked!

Finally it’s the little reprieve before the craziness of the holiday season kicks off. It’s that little hiatus everyone needs before they gear up for the festive season. Spend the day at Ocean Beach, BBQ in Golden Gate Park, go for a walk to Lands End, get your Bluegrass on and your clothes off because the Indian Summer is just around the corner folks!

And in case you’re wondering, we still don’t know whether or not Indian Summer is a culturally insensitive term.

What are your reasons SF’s Indian Summer is the best time of year? Leave them in the comments section.


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Image courtesy of:

Maira Sutton

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Lachlan Bray - Broke-Ass Bartender

Lachlan Bray - Broke-Ass Bartender

Lachlan is a landlubbin' scallywag hailin' from the great southern rock in the south pacific, Australia.

He enjoys plundering bootie, singin' sea shanties, and swiggin' rum. He tends bar by night and is engaged in acts of piracy by day. When he's not whimsically tinkin' about the seven seas; he produces spoken word events, works for a theater company and writes on all he sees.

But currently he's more than a bit taken with being paid to dress up as a pirate for children's birthday parties and summer camps...