As my plane flew over the hills between I-5 and Gilroy yesterday, I looked down at the landscape and was taken aback by how strange it looked to me. I didn't recognize the trees at all. Once we began our descent over the greenbelt between 680 and 880, things began looking more familar. But the feeling that I was out of place persisted. Even after Doug picked me up at the airport, I had the impression of arriving some place foreign. Only after we drove up to Piedmont and then over to the Top Dog in the plaza at 51st and Broadway did I start to feel like I'd returned to a place that had been my home. Maybe it was the time of year that exacerbated this sense of displacement. I hadn't been in the Bay Area in Winter since 2001. The interesting thing was that, although the streets looked like a dream to me, the calculating part of me was able to give Doug advice -- not necessary, really -- on what route to take and where to park. It was like I'd tried to ride a bike for the first time in years and, though my body still knew how, my mind still needed time to catch up.