サンフランシスコは大混雑 Stuck in San Francisco

「やはり、ここまで来たからには、サンフランシスコを見ないで帰すわけにはいかない。」

ということで、ちえぞうとみゆちゃんを連れて、目指すはサンフランシスコ。私にとってもサンフランシスコは5年ぶり。ちょっとワクワク。ピア39、コイトタワーにゴールデンゲート・ブリッジ。その先にあるおしゃれな町、サウサリートでお茶をするのもいいかもね。綺麗な景色に一日ひたり、いい気分で帰ってくる。そんな一日を想像してたんだけど、、、さて現実は、、、

夏休みの週末ということで、どこも大渋滞。ピア39までは良かったけど、コイトタワーでは駐車場の空き待ちの車の列。タワーでも上まで行こうとする人の長蛇の列。結局タワーには上らず、ふもとから景色を眺めました。ジグザグの坂で有名なロンバード通りも見るからに混んでいたので、車の中から通りすがりに眺めただけ。途中、海沿いの公園で腹ごしらえ。お弁当を持ってきてよかった(^_^;)。いよいよ車でゴールデンゲート・ブリッジを渡ります。渡ったところで車を降りて、橋を少し歩いてみました。

ところが、ふと気がつくと反対車線が大渋滞。つまり、この渋滞に入らないと帰れない。それならサウサリートでブラブラしているうちに渋滞もなくなるだろうと、車に乗り込んだものの、サウサリートも大渋滞。結局引き返して橋に向かう大渋滞に突入。ただ時間だけが過ぎていきます。ちえぞうとみゆちゃんが、車中ぐっすり寝ていてくれたのがせめてもの救いです。目が覚めて時計を見て、でもまだ橋の上にいるのにびっくりのちえぞうでした。

結局、そのままサンノゼに帰ったのですが、途中、トイレ休憩で寄ったビーチのアイスクリーム売りのトラックが、後光をさして見えました。この日の教訓「ゴールデンゲートは渡っちゃいけない。」肝に銘じておきましょう。

“If you have come this far, I cannot let you go home without seeing San Francisco.”

Yes, we were off to San Francisco with Chiezo and Miyu. I was excited about going to San Francisco because I hadn’t been there for 5 years. We could go to Pier 39, Coit Tower, and Golden Gate Bridge. It would be nice to stop at Sausalito for a cup of coffee, a fancy town on the other side of the bridge. Then we could happily come home after being exposed to the beautiful scenery all day. That was what I had imagined the day would be like. Well, here is the reality...

It was a weekend in the middle of summer, which meant a heavy traffic all over the city. Things had gone fairly well until we left Pier 39. There was a long line of cars waiting to get in the parking lot of Coit Tower. At the tower, there was a long line of people waiting to go up to the top of the tower. We gave up going up and enjoyed the scenery at the foot of the tower instead. Lombard Street, famous for its zigzag slope, looked so crowded that we just caught a glimpse of it in the car. After having a picnic at a seaside park (I was so glad that we brought our lunch), we headed for Golden Gate Bridge and finally crossed it. On the other side of the bridge, we got off the car and took a little walk.

Then, we noticed that all the lanes going the other way were packed with cars, which meant we couldn’t go home without getting in that traffic. Well, let’s go further to Sausalito for a cup of coffee. The traffic would be better later. All we found was Sausalito was packed with cars, too, leaving us no choice but going into the big traffic jam toward the bridge. Only time went by. Good thing was that Chiezo and Miyu were fast asleep in the car until Chiezo woke up to be surprised that we were still stuck on a bridge after all this time.

Without going anywhere anymore, we headed home, except for a short stop at a beach for bathroom. There was an ice cream van at the beach. Wow, I could see a luminous halo shining behind the van. A lesson learned, “Never cross Golden Gate Bridge.” I will definitely keep that in mind.
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by danceofdragon | 2007-08-17 15:00