A sad sight from Friday the 13th. My first-ever car being towed away. I sold it for scrap to an auto parts dealer for a measly $600. A casualty of a hit-and-run driver while innocently parked at 14th and South Van Ness in the Mission.
Although I’m not a car person, I will miss it/her. In fact, I used to pride myself on not owning a car and being a bike and public transport kind of guy. That little vehicle was bought in 1999 after I made a blind move down to LA for a promotion. Nine months later, I returned back to SF and that was the only (s)car from the experience.
Without it, I would have never been the athlete I became, driving to triathlons, trail runs and early morning workouts. It was my chariot to my job in Berkeley, a shuttle for countless visitors to SFO or OAK, and many surprise rides home for my boyfriend and his bike from the pool.
I survived for four weeks vehicle-less. The first week entirely on BART and my bike. The following three weeks were a combination of a co-workerer’s kind carpool (allowing Janie Sparkles to come to the office), inline skates or my bike to BART.
Honestly, it wasn’t too difficult. Not being able to drive the dog to a park was the only downside. I enjoy riding the train to work. I like the time I get to knit and listen to music or books (any suggestions for my next audible.com download?). It’s been a means to get to know JH better and I’ll always welcome another dog-owning friend! It felt nice to reconnect to the City. Instead of orbiting freeways in my aluminum pod, I was part of the urban fabric.
Last Friday, the day of the sorry photo above, I picked up my new car. (No, I won’t post photos. That’s just silly.) I drove to work every day this past week, although I did carpool with JH and drive multiple co-workers home. It’s not a return to the gas-guzzling status quo. I’ll use it judiciously. So far, Janie Sparkles has enjoyed a park visit, a beach romp and many days at the office. I relish the freedom of being able to come and go as I please.
However, yesterday was such a lovely day, I decided to walk my ass all over town, through the Castro, to ImagiKnit, into a (new to me) hip, lil’, custom graphic apparel shop (My Trick Pony), and I had a surprise run-in with a friend’s girlfriend as I walked back home.
That’s something I hadn’t done for months. Note to self: take more walks, not just with the dog. It felt great to reclaim this town and the distances between my home and favorite neighborhoods as my own.