$7.15

Had we actually reached our destination - Haight/Ashbury - and not, instead, ended up crunched in the middle of an intersection, our cab fare likely would've been slightly more than $7.15. But as we sat, the four of us, crunched in the middle of the intersection, in a cab, our cab meter read $7.15. And continued to increase with every passing minute.

We were just in a car accident. In a cab. In the middle of downtown San Francisco.

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Who does that happen to in real life? Seriously.

It was post-marathon. Courtney, Heidi and I were exhausted, but showered. And starving. We needed to eat and we needed to eat bar food. Now. The hotel concierge gracefully gave us the name and location of a bar in the Haight/Ashbury neighborhood that served wings. I wanted nothing more in the world at that moment than hot wings. And a bloody mary. And, clearly, heart burn.

So, we hailed a cab. And the three of us piled into the back seat, sore legs and all. Heidi's fiance sat shotgun with the cab driver, who drove like a maniac. As evidenced by the remainder of this story.

I realize San Francisco is a busy city. I realize there are one-way streets, three-lane streets, giant hills, pedestrians. I also realize cab drivers have a responsibility to get passengers to Haight/Ashbury in one piece.

But, as the cab driver weaved in and out of three-lane traffic, floored it at green lights and slammed on the brakes at red lights, I remember turning to Courtney and saying, "You know. I feel like I should be wearing my seat belt. This guy is crazy."

And sure as shit, three minutes later, bam. Directly into the passenger side of a Red Cross volunteer van. We T-boned the Red Cross, which is sort of, I believe, the equivalent of hitting Jesus Christ.

Now, this is where it gets fuzzy. We did have a green light. But the Red Cross van was still slowly making its way through the intersection when our light turned green, and our cab driver promptly floored it. Smashing directly into Jesus on wheels.

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I was dazed. We were all OK, as were the Red Cross volunteers, but we sat in the cab, shocked, as cars honked and swerved and made their way around the wreck we made.

Our cab hit the Red Cross! Oh my God, that's bad juju!

Everyone - the passengers, the drivers, us - exchanged contact information for insurance purposes, and awkward pleasantries. Our cab driver said not a word. Not an apology, not an inquiry as to our well-being. And once all was said and done, he left. Left us on the street corner without so much as a, "Let me call you another cab."

That also means we didn't pay him one dime, despite the ever-increasing cab fare as the car sat wrecked in the intersection. The entire situation was the most bizarre thing I think I've ever experienced.

We, of course, called a new cab and got ourselves to Kezar in Haight/Ashbury for our wings and bloody marys, but not without a few exclamations of, "Our cab hit the freaking Red Cross."

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The bad juju has yet to strike down upon me, but you can bet your ass I won't be setting foot in another cab.