In my anticipation of San Francisco living, I was really hoping to be near a Muni light rail line. BART is great and all, but I got to ride it plenty when I lived in Berkeley, and wanted to try something else. Something faster than a bus. Which is why I was thrilled to discover that the J Church line is a six block walk from my new place.
This morning, my first day back to work since my move, I locked up the apartment, walked down to Mission, crossed the street and continued toward Dolores Street. Once at 30th and Dolores, a J line stop, I saw the Muni sign on a street poll. It read: J Church to Balboa Park. I'd discovered the outbound stop, but where I was to get on in order to ride the J downtown was beyond me. I couldn't find it anywhere. I decided to punt.
So, I trotted back down 30th to Mission where I saw a bus headed my way. All I needed to do was get to the 24th St. BART station. I knew the 14 and the 49 went there, but wasn't sure about any of the others. I squinted and made out a 67 on the front of the fast-moving bus.
Quickly I texted Ian: "67 goes to 24th St. BART, yay or nay?" I hit send just as the bus hissed to a halt.
I waited until all the rest of the riders boarded.
"Does this bus go to the BART station on 24th?," I asked before I mistakenly fed the machine a buck-fifty. The driver nodded, so I climbed aboard. Things were looking up, but I held my breath when it made a left onto Valencia. That wasn't the way to the BART stop. Deciding not to freak, I checked my phone. "It may turn right at Cesar Chavez," Ian had replied. Sadly, it did not.
Once the bus made it to Valencia and 24th I hit the yellow button signaling the driver to stop. It wasn't far too hoof it from there to the trains.
"You are going to the BART station, right?," said a kind, balding man who looked a little like Craig Newmark. I nodded at him.
"He'll make a right here. Your's is the next stop," the Craig look-alike informed me. I thanked him repeatedly, as San Franciscans don't offer up unsolicited transit advice all that often.
Sure enough the bus stopped just in front of the BART station. I climbed off and descended the stairs, happy to be back on schedule and using a mode of transportation I'm entirely comfortable with.
The Internet tells me that I can take the J line to downtown from 30th and Dolores. Tomorrow I plan on going back there to figure out where that inbound stop has run off to.
EDITED TO ADD: I did all this shit in high heels.