China Town, San Francisco. Corner of Grant and Clay street. A facinating hybrid of American and Cantonese culture.
My first impression of the San Francisco China Town was bad: the district appeared to be a very touristic, overrated, too crowded place selling cheap plastic Buddhas, 2 $ lousy T-shirts and suspicious-looking "health balls".
But when I returned there another and yet another day I slowly found it more and more appealing. It all started in a small shop when we stopped to buy water. I asked the Chinese man at the counter how´s "Thank You" in Chinese. He responded, laughed and we talked. Instantly China Town gained a much more "human" face. Just taste delicious Dim Sum, drop in to see Fortune Cookies factory, admire oriental Renaissance style buildings´ decoration, stroll narrow in between alleys, look for family run restaurants, enjoy card and mahjong players at Yerba Buena and ignore hordes of tourists on the main Grand Avenue.
Xie Xie China Town !
Every street has a double name. One of the most interesting murals: Chinese workers constructing the transcontinental railway in the early XIXth century.
China Town moments.
Date: August 14th, 15th and 16th, 2010.