"In the foreground were warehouses that looked deserted even in daylight, derelict even in boom times. Manufacturers of rope and cord, supplying the ships moving slowly in and out of the Embarcadero, the freighters tying up at these piers and binding cargo two stories high on their decks. I could never tell if this was San Francisco’s past or its future. War ought to have kept this city humming with action and transaction, but there were limits, there was a balance. War and business went together. But because it was powered by cash and factories, war itself could be mistaken for commerce, and this was a fatal error. Not a snap misjudgment on the road, but a long, slow drift away from the intended destination."