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Article: Warm Regards from Freezing San Francisco


Featured Item: Peacock Wisteria Stained-Glass Window

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Summer temperatures

It’s late August and I will be glad when another cold San Francisco summer is over. Foggy skies, chilly winds, gloomy days - residents love it. I don’t. If you’re not hip to typical San Francisco summer weather read the Article section and be flummoxed.    

This month’s newsletter features our Peacock & Wisteria stained-glass window. This colorful and elegant work of art portrays a scene of nature that will brighten any décor against gloomy skies. For details see the Featured Item section.


Enjoy our Summer 2022 Newsletter.



Featured Item

Note: Each item presented is a one-of-a-kind work of art available for purchase. Should any item sell, there are no duplicates.  Contact us about any similar items. 
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Peacock Wisteria stained-glass window

Peacock Wisteria Stained-Glass Window

This spectacular stained-glass window depicting a regal peacock perched in an oval frame surrounded by dragonflies, wisteria, and roses is an elegant composition of nature done in beautiful colors.


My bedroom window

And how about 4th of July celebration with the crowds at Aquatic Park, lying flat on the grass wrapped in blankets or better yet sheets of plastic, looking up at the fog bursting into faint colors of swirls and shooting stars. Woopty-doo, some fireworks show. It was cut short again this year. Oh, I could go on…

I know… the rest of the country, the world, is suffering giant heat waves, mass flooding, draught, devastating fires. At least I can stay home, cozy, and warm with the heat turned up. I can watch the trees outside my window bending over in the wind while they disappear in the fog.

Just saying…


Dining Room Window

PS: Woke up this morning to a glorious, sunny day! Blue skies, fog just a thin wisp on the horizon and I’m outta here!

What my neighbors have to say about San Francisco’s fog.

Good 'ol Karl the Fog.

The world is baking, and we are sooo lucky.

Enough with the fog! Sandburg can have his little cat feet. All I ask for is a couple of hours of sunshine.

So, move already!

I do love our “air conditioned” City.

Happy Fogust!

We can drive five miles in any direction to summer.

Thick fog flow in The Avenues today. Brutally cold so far.

Fog is why we moved here.

SOME FUN FOG FACTS – Did you know?

“Karl the Fog”. That’s right! In 2010 San Francisco’s famous summer fog was unofficially named “Karl the Fog” by an anonymous person on a Twitter account. To date, Karl @KarlTheFog, has over 350,000 fog joke followers and has been affectionately adapted by San Francisco residents.

San Francisco’s fog has an unofficial name.

timed just right for the summer tourist season. The iconic Golden Gate Bridge, Lombard’s Crookedest Street, panoramic vistas of San Francisco and the Bay all disappear when the fog creeps in and engulfs The City. No sense taking photos.

Summer weekends - bumper to bumper, 3 blocks up, 30 minutes wait time to ride down the other side on the famous Crookedest Street, Lombard Street. Its panoramic East Bay views? Gone - just cold wind and thick fog this time of year. I want to yell down from my window, “Go home! I can’t get my car out of the garage. You won’t see anything, anyway”.

June through August are the foggiest months in San Francisco.


The annual tourist-car line-up on Lombard Street below my window.

A very short poem by Carl Sandburg, American poet, (1878 – 1967), published in 1916.


The fog comes 

on little cat feet.

It sits looking

over harbor and city

on silent haunches

and then moves on.

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 on little cat feet... 

A charming little poem steeped in stealth and mystery. Sound vaguely familiar? Perhaps the part about little cat feet. The poem characterizes the fog as a graceful cat that moves in silently like the fog and appears. It sits on its haunches like a fog settling over an unnamed city and harbor. Then, after some time, the fog simply disappears like a cat that has moved on.

What causes San Francisco’s fog? 

Northern California's Central Valley climate gets very hot in the summer. This hot inland air rises creating a vacuum for the moisture-filled, cold ocean air to rush in to replace it. This high-pressure exchange produces a thick summer fog that blankets the Bay Area especially San Francisco which typically can be up to 30 degrees cooler than other parts of California in the summer.

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Fog moving in from the ocean blocking out the summer sun, San Francisco Bay,  and the Golden Gate Bridge.

 Why San Francisco is so cold in the summer.

It’s because the summer fog floats in over The City in June, July, and August and blocks out the sun. It brings with it strong, drizzly, cold winds which can cause daytime temperatures to quickly drop from 70 degrees to the low 50s. When summer blue skies turn to cool grey, locals refer to these damp months as “June Gloom,” “No Sky July” and “Fogust”.


Then again, these are the best months for Fisherman’s Wharf merchants to make a killing selling warm cover-ups to unsuspecting, freezing tourists. Visitors still don’t get it - you can’t walk around San Francisco during summertime in tank tops and shorts.

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Fog retreated revealing a spectacular western sunset, The San Francisco

Bay and lighted Golden Gate Bridge.

The most misquoted quote re: San Francisco’s weather … How does it go again?

"The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco."

We all know this little witticism is attributed to legendary American storyteller and humorist, Samuel Langhorne Clemens (1835 – 1910), otherwise known by his pen name Mark Twain. But in my researching, I was surprised to find that this well-known remark is of unknown origin. In fact, in his speeches and records there is no evidence that he ever made this quip about San Francisco. Maybe this is the coolest thing Mark Twain never reckoned.


San Francisco summer afternoon in July. 57 degrees.

Is that Santa?!!

Foghorns & San Francisco – joined at the hip since 1859.

Foghorns – they conjure up Films Noir, of nighttime streets shiny-wet, trench coats, obligatory scene: strike match, light cigarette in fog, and of course, there’s always a beautiful dame and a mysterious murder. San Francisco’s historic,1922 Castro Movie Theater presents these films every year during their sell-out Film Noir Fest.

The first time I heard foghorns was when I moved to San Francisco over 50 years ago. Their mournful, comforting sounds came in through my bedroom window on foggy nights. I imagined lions in The Bay waters calling out to each other – some in high pitch, some very deep. How romantic - just like in the movies. Did you know each foghorn has its own tone which identifies a specific navigational warning signal that can be heard up to 20 miles away?


Come-to-think-of-it, these days I don’t hear them calling as I used to. Foghorns are still required by federal and international safety laws, but in 1985 the old-style diaphragm horns were removed and replaced with radar, sonar, and modern technology. San Franciscans were outraged and pledged to save the old foghorns. They are The City’s symbolic identity, its romantic nostalgia. Coast Guard officials agreed to allow three of the original 1934 foghorns to remain. They are mounted below the roadway level at mid-span on the Golden Gate Bridge, still roaring at full volume in the fog - day, and night.


Listen to San Francisco’s foghorns in foggy, picturesque videos on You Tube.

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Film Noir movie poster




Living Room window


Take out your fake furs – time to bundle up. It’s summertime in San Francisco!!

Happening this weekend – Outside Lands, San Francisco’s biggest music festival held at Golden Gate Park. Photos in the newspapers of big-name musicians performing on stage appearing like ghosts in the mist. High paying ticket crowds bundled up against the winds watching from below. Not my cup of (hot) tea!

It may still be summer in much of the world, but this is the time of year when I kvetch to anyone who will listen about how I haven’t had a proper summer for over 50 years living here in San Francisco. Sheesh! There she goes again. I mean it! San Francisco is beautiful and all that but I’m freezing. Wake up to grey skies and whistling winds all summer - don’t leave the apartment much. Seems worse this year. I hung stained-glass windows in my apartment - blocking views - to bring in color and cheerfulness.

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