Goodbye, Fremont

Many people don’t know this but I didn’t learn how to drive until I’d graduated from college. Because of this, while deciding on a place to call my post-collegiate home, choices were limited to areas accessible by BART, so that I could commute to my job in SF in the mornings. I was very lucky at the time–completely naive, I didn’t even have a roommate and ended up finding Old Roomie on an alumni mailing list. she was a few years older and so much more liberated and worldly…she certainly made life very fun.

We settled in a four room single family home, just off the bridge in fremont. Through the years, a number of 3rd roommates cycled through the place, some real cool but some just plan psycho or difficult to live with. For four years we lived there! I never thought time could pass so fast. Despite the stigma of living in Boring Fremont, I found that when the time came for our landlady to sell the place (and us to move out), I was sad to leave.

Reasons why Fremont is a great place to live.
1) Half Price Books – my favorite bookstore to this day. Spacious, clean, and browseable, they carry a very current selection of new releases at very reasonable prices. and they pay cash for the stuff you trade in!
2) Largest afgan community in the United States, making for some great Afghan restaurants – my favorite was the “Kebab Place” on Fremont blvd, a literal hole in the wall with two grandmas behind a charcoal stove. The lamb kebabs were excellent, as were the stuffed potato crepes served with yogurt. If you could get past the grit, so delicious.
3) Uncle Yueh’s – this place closed down, but they had the best scallion pancakes I’ve ever had in my life (except yours, grandma 🙂 ) peppery, and crispy on the outside, chewy on the inside. they also had excellent shao bing jia rou (sesame pastry with beef & cilantro), lots of cantonese slow cooked soups, and a very tasty taro and duck dish.
4) Pho 99 – in its day, excellent pho, vermicelli bowls, rolls, and pearl tea. cheap, too!

5) Accessible: to 680 – a beautiful drive to pleasanton as I did for about a year, 880, 84, and 237. Fry’s electronics, what used to be Tri-City sports, Old Navy and Marina Foods
6) Little Taiwan. enough said. If you like hot, look for ninji hot pot, which comes in three intensities: mild, hot, or searing.
7) it’s cheap, cheap, cheap. we had a huge place, and the landlady liked us…I think I paid around 650 a month!

When you’ve been living in a place for a while, a home is like a living entity, it becomes a part of you with a personality of its own. In the four years we lived there, we had collected various furniture and had gotten things to a state where they were “just right”. It was hard to leave when it was time.