Tuesday, September 7 – We’re Back!


Yes, we’re back, us casual carpoolers, along with the fog. Vacation’s over, and a lovely one it was. A week away on the northern California coast was much too short. Deer, tidepools, long walks on trails along the ocean and through the sunny sweet-grass-smelling meadows, and always, the glorious Pacific ocean. Ahh.

I’m in a Honda Insight (a hybrid) this morning with a relaxed, pleasant driver in a comfortably warm car. He’s an Asian-American guy in his early 40s dressed casually in khakis and a windbreaker. KDFC is on the radio with good classical music. I contribute $1 to the toll; the rider in the back seat pays $1.25. The driver thanks us both. A brief blast of sunshine splashes over us as we cross the Carquinez Bridge and then we return to the fog and the sluggish back-from-vacation traffic. The electronic traffic alert sign tells us 39 minutes to San Francisco and that’s exactly how long it takes this morning. We pass the sign at 7:05 and arrive at the San Francisco drop off corner at 7:44.

Plowing through my messages and newspapers, it looks like there’s been a lot going on for commuters during these last few weeks of summer. Big news is that the first of the new express lanes has opened on the 680 freeway, (remember these are actually carpool lanes that are now being made available to single drivers who want to pay extra); new numbers for the number of carpoolers and toll revenue should be coming in soon. Plus there are freeway lanes widening and some improvements in public transportation options. I’m just back and catching up and will be sharing my views on all this as the week unfolds.

Take heart fellow travelers, it’s a short week. Tomorrow’s already Wednesday.

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