Friday, June 09, 2006

Rest Stop on International Boulevard:

We rode up International Boulevard (East 14th Street) in search of a pit stop. Close to Clinton Park we found a new Hong Kong-style café. Our rig got quite a few looks from the patrons as we parked outside. We sat out front on a comfortable sidewalk bench and enjoyed our strong decaf made with rich condensed milk. Many people walked by, most without verbal comment. Some wore amused expressions and pointed at different directions. Others were simply confused by our signs.

Angela and her two friends stopped and asked us what we were doing. We explained and asked them for help. In reply to whether we were in East Oakland they said:

“No, this isn’t East Oakland. This is the San Antonio. If you want to get to East Oakland, you have to go all the way that way [pointing up International Boulevard]. If you want to know where East Oakland is, you should ask the police.”

Then they started laughing and singing a rap song that mentions some East Oakland streets. They couldn’t remember the name of the song.

They told us we would know we were in East Oakland when we started to see taco trucks. They described East Oakland as ‘industrial’ and ‘ghetto’.


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