Bus Report #962
If you're anything like me, it has been quite a long time. I used to love walking down to the turnaround on California Street and riding up to Polk, but I haven't done that in forever.
And I don't think I've ever been on the main Powell line other than my first Christmas in San Francisco, when my roommates and I got booted off the cable car because we'd run to catch it and had jumped on while it was moving. We deserved it, but how else were three tipsy ladies going to get to the Tonga Room that night? Walking? Heh.
The other night I had dinner with C. over in Nob Hill. He'd taken a cable car to meet me and I decided it was time I went on one again, so after dinner we caught a Hyde Street car and rode to the end of the line.
You forget how the car moves up and down the hills, the grip latching onto the constantly moving cables, the way the gripman staffs the back of the car, the conductor ringing the bells. In between talking to the gripman, C. pointed out the smell of the wood and the grease of the brakes - something almost piney. Something warm.
At night there aren't a lot of riders. There were the usual tourists, sure, but also local people. An elderly woman in a smart coat, carrying her groceries. People on their way to supper, or home from work. The city is so quiet, it is strange. We kept catching views of the Bay Bridge lights all the way down by the water front. At the top of one hill, we were so high up I could not see the street below.
Get out one afternoon or evening soon, everyone, and catch a cable car. Your Clipper monthly pass works on the cable cars, so you have no excuses.
Check back in here and tell me about your cable car experience. I'll accept past excellent cable car stories, too.
If enough people write in, I'll raffle off a small but fun prize. You've got until March 15 to enter the raffle.