Wednesday, January 6, 2010


Shift #1

WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 6 -– 5:52 a.m. -– Mission/Third Street to California/Kearny -- $4.90

I HAVE SPENT THE PAST HOUR inching my cab to the front of the cab line in front of the Westin-Market Street. For a while, I did some stretching out on the sidewalk, but it’s cold out there, so I’m behind the wheel, reading The Power of Now, and now my first fare of the year walks out of the hotel and says she’s going to 101 California Street, about ten blocks away.

She’s from Connecticut -- she’s in the insurance business -– she had good holidays -– she’s glad to see 2009 behind her, behind all of us. She loves coming to San Francisco, especially in the winter, because it’s so warm here compared to Connecticut… And barely three minutes later, here we are, pulling to the curb in front of 101 Cal.

“You are my first ride of the year,” I tell her, “and I’m going to start off my year with a free ride, if that’s all right with you -- and I hope it is.”

A smile creeps across her face. “Well,” she says. “That’s very sweet. Thank you.”


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