Rita, my seiner high schoolmate, studied in fine art. She had been in San Francisco for one year. We enjoyed the whole trip together with her boy friends, Mistu a Japanese. Her roommates are also artists. Hermione from Taiwan graduated in the Institute of Art in Chicago, now working in SF. Kevin from China now studies in the same school as Rita. He had worked in video game industry in Shen-hai for years before being in SF. A-Der is a friend I made when we were in the army. He is now studying in another art school in SF. His goal is to become a director making Taiwanese movies. His roommates are also from Taiwan, studying in movie and media individually.
San Francisco is also a city that has extremely freedom to express opinions. There is Gays/Lasbians area where they speak out their rights through parades every year. Their are area of Hippies where you can see people in long hairs, strange clothes with doggies. When Vienein War, it's historically against the war severely.
On the other hand, San Francisco is a dangerous city. The amount of homeless here is the most I have ever seen. They sleep everywhere in the bus stops, street corners, or under light stands. Some regions is strongly told not to go because of the drugs, robbery and gangsters fighting even in day time.
In the New Year's Eve, we came to the counting and the fireworks. It's so crowded. You can hear people shouting and smell everywhere the cannabis. However it's OK. What's so unfortunate is that we had a robbery report. Kevin is robbed of his camera by a group of black people on our way to the fireworks. I was told that this happened all the time just around the acquainted friends.
I think it's exactly this mixing of the beauty and the dirty, freedom to speak and dangerous to live that makes San Francisco attracted. I haven't known it well and I will be back one day.