Thanks to the generosity of the LA's parents, we were a party of four yesterday at the Davies Symphony Hall for Mahler's 8th, the Symphony of a Thousand, conducted by Michael Tilson Thomas. The performance was wonderful, apart from the inevitable people unable to resist coughing during the quiet parts. On the way, I realised why the toll on the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge is on the Westbound journey: that's the one that goes via the upper deck. The view is gorgeous that way, even from the Eastern span (the replacement is currently being constructed, as a seismic upgrade; the newspaper told me recently it was going to be a suspension span, and is being built deck-first.)
The thing I really like about the Bay Bridge, though, is its genesis. It was ordered to be built by Joshua Norton, who was the self-proclaimed Emperor of the United States. Actually, he was a homeless crazy guy, but the entire city of San Francisco went along with his proclamation, and accepted his "money" at face value. You have to love a city that does something like that.