Finally made it last week to San Francisco, the City by the Bay. I was here last without family when we were touring a Siberian priest around to American holy places. Today we celebrated our family’s name’s day, or what the Serbians call the family slava. Ours is the Russian Royal Family that was martyred by the Soviets in 1917 and whose memory we commemorate on the old calendar July 4/17. We traveled to the Russian Cathedral Joy of All Who Sorrow which was built by St. John Maximovitch of Shanghai and San Francisco whose relics/remains still lie in state in the church for any pilgrim to come and talk to him.
Our uncle who is a deacon on pilgrimage there prepared a wonderful little trapeza for us in the apartment he is staying near the church, and our children, all of whom are named after one of the Russian Royal Martyrs, celebrated their name’s day in style.
By God’s grace, we were able to see some beautiful sites in the city of San Francisco. We asked each child what they wanted to do/see and did our best to accommodate their wish if it was within the budget. The focus was very much on cable cars, winding streets, and Chinese cuisine. As for cable cars, we not only visited the city’s free museum, we finished the day by actually riding one from down near the northern coast of the city, dubbed the Fisherman’s Pier. For winding streets, we climbed to Lombard, the world’s crookedest street, and then finished off the evening with a Chinese dinner near the water (a little overpriced for our family of seven, but we ordered less and supplemented with food left over from the afternoon’s trapeza).
We are so happy for what may be our last vacation all together. We never know as the children get older and older, what paths the Lord may have in store for them that do not include their parents or siblings. But for this trip at least, whenever we get beyond the little squabbles of everyday life, we try to cherish one another one last time.