Sunday, May 23, 2010

The Best Cappuccino Deal in Town

First cappuccino
I have resisted writing about Cafe Docanto because every time I've been there I have been the only female patron and it kind of bothered me that it was such a male dominated establishment.  But they are always very friendly and I can accept that certain places appeal to or are by tradition favored by one sex or the other.
When I was a kid, my father said the same thing every evening when he came home from work: "Did anyone send us any money today?" Well someone (the state franchise tax board) sent me some money yesterday and I wanted to celebrate by going out for coffee. So I headed over to Cafe Docanto and had TWO cappuccinos and some sort of creme filled pastry.
Second cappuccino
 The cappuccinos are strong and robust with just a hint of bitterness and each one costs just $2.  Cafe Docanto also serves Portuguese sandwiches starting at $2. The owner provides free morning newspapers for the customers to read which I really appreciate. There were men sidled up to the coffee bar drinking espresso shots like they were tequila shots and every seat in the cafe was taken and everyone was watching a futsal game.

 A lively discussion ensued when I asked what "futsal" was.  They were having trouble agreeing on a definition so I asked for an English translation and someone said "futsal" is "futsal" in English.  Well almost.  Futsal is like soccer (football) played on a smaller surface and indoors and with a harder, less bouncy ball. For the record, Brazil's and Portugal's futsal teams are internationally ranked first and fifth respectively.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Sharks Win - Behold Happiness

I watched game five of the semi-finals at home but the minute the Sharks won it, I jumped on my bike and headed downtown.  Now THAT was fun!

So Much to See and Do the Kids (and adults) Will have the Time of Their Lives

Yesterday afternoon my friend called me and said she would be playing soccer on a field near my house and she thought I might like to walk the dog over and watch.  Yes, I would like to watch the game, no I would not like to bring the dog.  He's had his chance to attend a soccer game.  One day we were out walking in an big open area (he was off leash) when we came upon a girls' high school soccer practice.  He started running up and down the field with the girls, chasing the ball and having great time. When I finally got him leashed up and over to the sidelines, the girls came over and started petting him and fawning over him.  Noticing how irritated the coach was, we left.
Handball courts are in the background.
 The field where my friend was playing is part of a vast and impressive sports complex that lies between Roosevelt Park and San Jose High Academy.  There is a fantastic skateboard park, a roller hockey rink and stadium, handball courts, baseball fields (yes, multiple baseball fields) football stadium and track.
Roller hockey rink is in background.
Nestled in among all these arenas are two open fields large enough to accommodate soccer.  Any given night in San Jose, one is likely to find soccer games (organized and not) taking place in parks and schools and fields.  My friend's game was part of an adult coed soccer league and I have to say it sure looked like fun and set against the backdrop of Mt Hamilton with Lick Observatory sparkling in the setting sun, it was a pleasure to be there.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

What a Difference 7 Years Makes

This weekend marks the 7th anniversary of my move to downtown San Jose.  I remember that weekend 7 years ago well, with all the wonderful friends and family who helped me move and offered words of encouragement (even if forced at times) and tried not show their horror at what I had taken on. Cinco de Mayo celebrations were in full swing and every car, house and person (it seemed) sported a Mexican flag.  There was music and the happy sounds of family gatherings everywhere and the air was filled with wonderful smells of barbeque and home cooking.  My neighbors came over with plates of delicious fresh food to welcome me. Today I spent the day in the Santa Cruz mountains and as I rode back into town I could tell from the helicopters overhead that the immigration reform march must have started.  I headed over to Santa Clara Street and was struck by the different tone and appearance of today's march from the marches in the past.

 Today there were mostly American flags sending a clear message: "We ARE Americans."  The crowd had a focused message "Reform Now!"

This country has shown itself to be capable of great things, enormous generosity, bravery, creativity, ingenuity and resourcefulness.  We are big enough and good enough to tackle this issue and make America work for all its people.