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  • Waiting for a ride

Friday, July 9 The first week ends

It’s light Friday here in the land of the cold gray mornings, and just a few riders and then a few cars and off we all go. As the car before mine pulled away, I was taken aback to see a hand written sign in the front window – “Toll Required”. No questions about to pay or not to pay in that ride!

I join 3 ladies in a Rav4 L SUV. When I pull out a dollar, the young lovely girl next to me in the back seat, whispers “After”. I nod, and tuck my dollar bill away. Okay. Everyone’s wearing jeans in honor of Friday. I’m in my gym clothes ready for a quick pre-work session at Club One.

There are hardly any cars out here at all today and I see we’re going 70+ mph. A rosary swings from the rear-view mirror and an odd little Japanese stuffed animal/creature sits on the dash. The Mehserle verdict is in (involuntary manslaughter for the BART shooting). I saw the announcement on Channel 4 news this morning before I left the house. The news showed empty Oakland BART stations, reflecting, I guess, people’s fear about being out and about on such a tense day. There’s been some property damage in downtown Oakland and lots of stores are boarded up. Waiting now for the judge to pass sentence. No matter what the outcome there’s no winners in this tragedy.

Within minutes we’re at the toll gates and even the Cash Only lanes are nearly empty. And then we are at the drop-off and passing our dollars up to the driver. And so the first week of tolling ends. Have a great weekend. I’ll be pooling around again on Monday.

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