: views from the Hill

Monday, February 05, 2007

More QM2

Oh, my. Was traffic snarled today.

We knew there'd be some problems. Yes, indeed. TPTB had set electronic signs on the Embarcadero days ahead of time warning that traffic would be a mess from Broadway to Bay.

Broadway to Bay?

Try all the way back to 280 to way past Bay ... in both directions.

We swung by the Post Office to drop off a card (Happy bday, SP!) around noon. His nibs decided that traffic wouldn't be that bad on the Embarcadero after he missed hanging a right on Filbert and a right on Kearny and heading out that way. He drove (with detours) down to the Embarcadero where we waited through four traffic signal changes to hang a right and get out of town.

... thirty minutes later we were across from the ball park and almost out of town.

The traffic was nuts. Too many people on the crosswalks so drivers couldn't turn. An extra cruise ship berthed over at Pier 35, adding to the carnival atmosphere.

I predict Letters to the Editor in tomorrow's Chronicle from the folks at 101 Lombard, who insist that any new anything on the Embarcadero should be squelched because of traffic concerns.

"See?!?!! See?!?!!" they'll say.

Give it a rest, I say. Everyone else in the City tells the neighbors who complain about the traffic when the team's playing at Candlestick that they should chill. It's only ten days a year, we tell them. Live with it.

So we live with the cruise ship traffic jams, magnified today because there was not only a cruise ship BUT ALSO the QM2 AND all the people who came down to gawk at the QM2.

Taxis everywhere. Tour buses.

The F-line was running extra cars, which were jammed so they were running buses as well.

CurbedSF checks in and! includes a link to a YouTube video of the ship ("transoceanic liner") coming in under the GGBridge yesterday.

We decided to return home (from a busy day of sorting stuff and victuals runs to Costco and Trader Joe's) on a route that didn't use the Embarcadero.

Good thing.

We double-parked at the top of the Steps and ran our purchases home at around 6P or so. His nibs took the MINI to its stall and said that while he was walking back up Union, he encountered a well-dressed woman of a certain age, talking to someone on her cell. "Didn't I tell you several times NOT TO GO NEAR THE EMBARCADERO?"

Not a happy camper. Her ride had failed her. She was walking down Union to find a ride to wherever it was she needed to go.

I wonder how many passengers will be left behind because the bar pilot MUST leave with the changing tide some time around 8P. Passengers that are not back on board will need to catch up with the ship ... somehow.

[8P] His nibs is checking with our telescope and can see the bar pilot up on the bridge. (Bar pilot's in suit and tie.) The ship isn't moving yet. Heck, the lines are still engaged, but at least there's action up on the bridge.

How long can the ship wait and still make it out the Gate safely?

[His nibs is watching the action and adds that the airplane with the lighted signage is flying back and forth over the crowds watching the ship, running an ad for Big-O Tires. Someone in marketing is making their momma proud.)

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