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Old 01-02-2012, 10:55 PM
 
Location: San Francisco, CA
506 posts, read 890,273 times
Reputation: 311

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Quote:
Originally Posted by rkwalton View Post
I think people here sometimes lack perspective. There are a couple of things that have made me laugh over the last few weeks. I was in a store and there was one cashier on duty. It was pretty clear it was a shift change or someone was on break. The line maybe has 6 or 7 people. Folks were trying to complain like it was the end of the world. One guy tried to talk to me about it. My reply was "I guess none of you have ever been grocery shopping in NYC." I said it with a smile, but I was like "really people?" I had visions in my head of the lines in the Trader Joe's in NYC, the Fairway Markets or even the Pathmarks. There just is no comparison. FreshDirect was a lifesaver for me in NYC because grocery shopping there is just hell.

I was at a bus stop the other day and two women were complaining about AC transit. Yes, the bus cycles are a bit slower, but I use NextBus.com to see when the buses are coming. (NYC WISHES it had that; they're working on real time tracking but it's not system wide yet.) Like the folks in the store, they tried to drag me into the whine-fest and again I'm like "nope, try using the buses in NYC and get back to me. You've got it good here."
Yeah. Before my first visit I got the impression that SF was full of surly waiters and cashiers, because I saw so many complaints for various places on Yelp. Then I arrived -- friendliest service I've seen in the country! And that's including places like Virginia and Tennessee! What the heck?? Finally figured out that locals all expect unvaryingly friendly service, so one grumpy waiter and it's a scathing one-star review for THAT place.

Ditto all the griping about Muni. I mean, I get it that it's not that reliable and it gets too busy but... that's pretty common in most cities? And at least here you're not clueless, waiting out in a -20 wind chill! (Coming from Chicago, myself.)
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Old 01-02-2012, 10:56 PM
 
34 posts, read 54,825 times
Reputation: 56
Regarding your job search, I suggest engaging at least one recruiter if corporations or large companies are in your plans. Most S.F. and Oakland firms have online job boards and accountancy positions are easily found, though not to say plentiful. There are a number of start-ups in S.F. looking for staff with accounting skills also. Now that December is past, staff budgets have been confirmed for the coming year and you may find temporary, if not permanent employment opportunities.
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Old 01-02-2012, 11:28 PM
 
Location: South Korea
5,242 posts, read 10,468,655 times
Reputation: 2915
Accountemps often has a big billboard up by the Bay Bridge, they've had up on and off for well over a year, so I imagine they have positions. Might be good to contact them when starting your job search.
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Old 01-10-2012, 08:06 PM
 
10 posts, read 15,218 times
Reputation: 10
It's good to know the friendliness of San Franciscans is not an uncommon impression. Rkwalton, thanks for your detailed reply. I lived in Chicago before moving to NYC, so it won't be a big "adjustment" for me when I am in SF. The most annoying experience in NYC to me is to deal with the rude and careless people on subways, not to mention the smelly homeless occupying several seats as their beds. :-) I've lived in a few largest cities in the world all my life, but I have to say NYers live up to that "rudeness" reputation. I would probably need to adjust to "strangers smiling at you" situation in SF. :-)

It seems Oakland downtown doesn’t have a positive reputation. Would anyone suggest live in Lakeside Apartment district there? Can anyone tell me the boundaries of Lakeside Apartment district and its exact location?

These are the neighborhoods of Oakland that I’ll explore during my trip :

Rockridge
Piedmont Avenue
Lake Merritt
Jack London Square

Is it feasible to explore by taking BART and walking around, or do I need a car to do so? Any suggestions regarding where to start and end?

Thanks.
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Old 01-10-2012, 08:44 PM
 
Location: South Korea
5,242 posts, read 10,468,655 times
Reputation: 2915
a) if you don't like homeless people, you probably won't like SF a lot, they're all over the place. Oakland has some really seedy areas but in general I find that the nice parts of Oakland (Rockridge, Piedmont Ave etc) have way less homeless people than the nice parts of SF.
b) I think Lakeside is ok if you're right by the Lake but the further from it you get the seedier it gets. The best parts around Lake Merritt are to the east (Cleveland Heights) and to the north (Adams Point/Grand Lake).
c) downtown Oakland is actually pretty cool but it really differs from block to block, some blocks are really seedy and others have a lot of cool places to eat and drink. There isn't much housing downtown though but there are several new condo buildings scattered around downtown that you might be interested in. Some might have nice interiors but when you go out the door they're in a crappy area, so be a bit careful if you do want to buy a condo there.
d) If you really want to live without a car I wouldn't recommend Jack London Square. It has some decent stuff there like a few bars and Yoshi's but there's also some really seedy run-down blocks, and it's separated from BART and downtown Oakland by a pretty seedy stretch of Broadway. If you just wanted to get to downtown SF you could probably take a Transbay bus or the ferry, but if you ever needed to go shopping you'd have to go to a different neighborhood, and JLS isn't really a walkable distance from anything useful.
e) generally you can get around Oakland without a car but it's a lot more spread out than SF. The local bus system (AC Transit) doesn't run that often so it's not really convenient for getting around, though if you have a smartphone you can check nextbus.com and see when the next bus is coming. I would take BART to Rockridge, walk south on College Ave, then when you get to Pleasant Hill take a left, then you go over a hill and hit Piedmont Ave, then you can walk south on that. Then you could walk west on 40th to get to Macarthur BART or figure out a bus that would take you to BART. Then you could go to 19th Street Downtown Oakland, then walk east on Grand from Broadway to get to the north side of Lake Merritt and walk around there. Keep going east on Grand until it goes north and under the highway, then stay on it and you can walk through the Grand Lake neighborhood which has a lot of restaurants etc. Oakland has walkable commercial districts but honestly it's just not as walkable as SF and is more spread out. It's a great city to get around on bike though.
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Old 01-11-2012, 07:18 AM
 
10 posts, read 15,218 times
Reputation: 10
Thanks for all the information, Mayorhagger. How long will it take to cover all the areas I'd like to see according to your suggested rounte? I plan on one day and get back to SF by 6 or 7pm-ish. I just want to get a feel about these areas, so walking is the best way unless the route takes up too much time. I understand it depends on many factors, but a general idea will be helpful.
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Old 01-11-2012, 07:50 AM
 
Location: Paranoid State
9,259 posts, read 7,072,625 times
Reputation: 9639
Xinyun,

On the job front, are you a CPA? Do you want to work for a big 4 firm? Or are you interested in corporate financial accounting? cost accounting? Finance? Treasury? Are you by chance a tax accountant (if so, you can write your own ticket) ???

I'd suggest you live in SF for the following reason. You can live car-free, and you can include larger Silicon Valley firms in your job search. Most of them have corporation-sponsored van-pools from SF to, for example, Intel or HP or Google, etc etc. These are not "mini-vans" but rather full-sized vans (but not a bus). You get on the van in the morning in SF, and the van takes you directly to the company parking lot. Still others offer dedicated van service from a CalTrain station in Silicon Valley direct to the company's front door in the morning and the reverse in the evening. Most people who do the commute this way find it quite workable.

The reason I mention SF to live rather than the other spots on your list is that while I know of many vanpools between SF & Silicon Valley, I am not aware of similar vanpools between, say, Oakland and Silicon Valley (although they might very well exist).

Good luck!
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Old 01-11-2012, 09:41 AM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
24,965 posts, read 24,754,320 times
Reputation: 22685
Quote:
Originally Posted by xinyun View Post
It's good to know the friendliness of San Franciscans is not an uncommon impression. Rkwalton, thanks for your detailed reply. I lived in Chicago before moving to NYC, so it won't be a big "adjustment" for me when I am in SF. The most annoying experience in NYC to me is to deal with the rude and careless people on subways, not to mention the smelly homeless occupying several seats as their beds. :-) I've lived in a few largest cities in the world all my life, but I have to say NYers live up to that "rudeness" reputation. I would probably need to adjust to "strangers smiling at you" situation in SF. :-)

It seems Oakland downtown doesn’t have a positive reputation. Would anyone suggest live in Lakeside Apartment district there? Can anyone tell me the boundaries of Lakeside Apartment district and its exact location?
There is a specific area of downtown Oakland called "Lakeside Apartments District."

It is basically west of Harrison towards the Lake and south of about 19th Street. It is very convenient for downtown, but it isn't quite as vibrant as other areas of Oakland. It is really dense, but quiet considering the level of density since there are lots of retirement homes in the area. It is OK, rents are really cheap. I have some friends who live over there and like it. Super close to Chinatown. All in all an OK neighborhood, but not upscale or new. Very diverse area in both ethnicity and income.
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Old 01-11-2012, 09:43 AM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
24,965 posts, read 24,754,320 times
Reputation: 22685
Quote:
Originally Posted by xinyun View Post
Thanks for all the information, Mayorhagger. How long will it take to cover all the areas I'd like to see according to your suggested rounte? I plan on one day and get back to SF by 6 or 7pm-ish. I just want to get a feel about these areas, so walking is the best way unless the route takes up too much time. I understand it depends on many factors, but a general idea will be helpful.
The areas on your list are about 5 miles apart from Jack London to Rockridge.

You can basically start at Broadway and Embarcadero (Jack London Square), travel up broadway about 2 miles and take Grand. This will take you to 50% of the lake neighborhoods. You can continue on Grand to get to Piedmont Ave area and then take Pleasant Valley (Grand's name changes) and you'll run back into Broadway and you'll be close to Rockridge. Broadway is a main thoroughfare and goes to half of the places you want.

Personally, I'd skip Jack London as a place to live. It has nice buildings, but is pretty deserted. Far from typical amenities, the drugstore etc. Basically people eat and run. More and more people are living there, so it isn't as quiet as it used to be, but it doesn't feel neighborhoody.
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Old 01-11-2012, 10:57 AM
 
Location: San Francisco Bay Area
140 posts, read 347,990 times
Reputation: 134
Start in SF if you can. Clement Street area between Arguello Blvd & 19th Av, and between Clement & Golden Gate Park would be ideal. That's where the most & the best Chinese, Korean, Vietnamese restaurants and grocery stores are concentrated. Chinatown and North Beach areas also worth a look too.

I turned down jobs offering double salary in places south of SF, like Sunnyvale & San Jose, because preferred my quality of life in San Francisco. I used to work as Financial Analyst.
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