Fifteen years ago (wow was it really that long ago?) I made my first ever trip abroad. I was 18 and at the end of studying a National Diploma at Falmouth. It was Final Major Project time and I wanted to do something big. I was reading Tales of The City and through happenstance San Francisco seemed like a great place to go.

I was so excited using my first passport, even if I did look like a girl in my picture

My project was very naive and pretty crap to be frank, the new and exciting glitz of a different culture, especially one so diverse as San Francisco’s meant I shot everything and anything, thinking it was great.

I did come away with a few images I really liked, and still like to this day. One if them, I call the cowboy shot, was printed really big for the exhibition, and unfortunately I never got the neg back, so I only have a couple of 12″x16″ and a 5′x3′ print, but I got the shot at least.

It occurred to me today that I could maybe find the street I took it on using Google Streetview, and after a bit of searching I found it. Rather serendipitously there is also a person crossing in front, like my shot. And it’s gratifying to know the Ocean Market and Deli still exists.

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In another shot taken in Chinatown where I stayed it seems Bob’s layaway plan may have come to fruition. However his legacy lives on, and watches are still being repaired. And of course, no more sin-sational videos, thanks internet.


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