The first time I visited San Francisco, well, it was in a “past life.” Note: I never even saw the Golden Gate Bridge. So when I returned some 25 years later and ran, all weepy, across the bridge, twice, it was a very different kind of visit. A glorious, magical one. For my day in Berkeley, I BART’d out over the bay into the town known for its funky, iconoclastic place in history. I was not disappointed. Just look at this sidewalk I found within minutes of my arrival, nestled into surrounding walkways studded with poems and artwork. I walked to Chez Panisse to see what it looked like and wound up -- what luck! -- having a wonderful, welcoming lunch there. A stop at the Cheeseboard/Pizza Collective (so Berkeley) across the street for some hazelnut shortbread. A stroll through the university, natch, and its kiosks plastered with political notices, its neighboring bookstores and record shops still thriving in this online age. A beautiful day, indeed.