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Tuesday morning, I left for work at the usual time. It had been raining horribly all throughout the night, and the wind was gusting so strongly that the sound of the windows rattling woke me up a few times.

Still, when I left Tuesday morning, the rain was letting up… it was really gray and drizzly, but nothing that severe. The morning news reported no delays on MUNI, so I figured that it would be an uneventful ride to the office.

Boy, was I wrong.

As soon as I stepped out of the door, I noticed a bus coming down my street… which is bizarre, because the buses don’t run on my street. The buses run on Haight street, one block south. I figured that it was out of service and returning to the depot. Then I noticed that it was full of people.

The bus pulled up to the corner and opened its door, so I ran up to the door and got in. I figured, what the hell… it’s a 71 Noriega bus, and it’s heading in the right direction… even if it’s on the wrong street.

It ended up that a large tree fell down on Haight Street between Steiner and Pierce. It totalled a couple of cars, blocked traffic, and it also knocked down the electric bus power lines. You see, in San Francisco, most of the east-west buses run on overhead power lines. You lose the Haight Street power grid, and only the infrequently scheduled half-sized diesel buses run. The result? Thousands of people crammed into these oversized mini-vans running at 1/3 the normal bus schedule. Needless to say, the commute in sucked.

No wonder the Examiner (the afternoon paper) reported that on a recent survey over 80% of all MUNI passengers are dissatisfied with MUNI service.

Posted in Muni Chronicles.

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