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  • Waiting for a ride

Tuesday, May 25 Rain, rain go away


I’m in the back of a big Nissan suv. A tiny woman is driving and she’s wearing a fabulous cotton turtleneck sweater. The colors are gorgeous – all pastel stripes – pink, yellow, orange, green, blue, gray. A white plastic rosary hangs from the mirror. Her black jacket and a faux-leopard computer case ride near me in the back seat. A small video screen stares up at me from between the front seats.

The sky gets increasingly dark as our trip progresses. Rain is imminent and is forecast for the entire day. Traffic is very heavy this morning. At 7:40 a.m. we round the corner by Golden Gate Race Track and enter the Berkeley ‘corridor’ which is 4 full lanes of traffic crawling towards the Bay Bridge and points beyond. At the end of this corridor, the traffic divides at a complex intersection known as “The Maze”, where freeways 80, 580, and 880 all merge. The 80 freeway, which is my commute, continues on over the Bay Bridge; the 580 and 880 take you to Oakland, Alameda, and the Oakland Airport. As we continue in the carpool lane on towards the bridge, we experience what I consider one of the carpool lane’s finest moments – where we bypass the toll gates and whiz past hundreds of cars slowly oozing through the toll area.

Looks like trouble on the bridge with 3 tow trucks and 2 CHP cars all stopped in the right hand lane, lights flashing madly. Some unknown disaster. Once we’re past them we pick up our speed and are across the bridge and in the city at 8 a.m.