6:15 am we were standing in front of Travelodge by the Bay wailing for our pick-up for a one day bus trip to Yosemite National Park from San Francisco.
6:20 am an airport van pulled up. Not for us, a family with lots of luggage got in. I double checked my receipt from Greyline San Francisco tours it read: Pick up details. Hotel: Travelodge by the Bay 6:15 am.
6:30 am still no bus. There was no number on the receipt to call, I tried the email, nothing about pick up. I googled grey line san francisco tours. There was a phone number. I called.
“Press one for reservations and tours.”
I pressed one, and a person answered.
“Hello we are going on the Yosemite tour and our bus has not arrived. They were supposed to come a 6:15am.”
“Did you call 24 hours in advance to get picked up?”
“What? We just made the reservation yesterday at 12:00, not 24 hours in advance.”
“Then you have to go to the office to get picked up.”
“But it says on our receipt pick up at hotel 6:15 am.” I answered my voice rising.
“I don’t think we have time to get there.”
Marie tapped me on the shoulder. “This cab driver wants to know if we need a ride.”
“Sure just hold on while I get the address.” Maybe we can still make it, but I don’t know the address.
I dialed the tour people again. No answer, I got the machine. I tried again, pounding my fingers into my iPhone. Someone answered and hung up. I tried again, finally I was able to ask, “What is the address for the Yosemite Tour.”
“478 Post Street” I repeated to the cab driver. “Do you think you can make it by 7:00?”
“OK tell the bus to wait for us.” I told the person on the line.
The cab driver nodded his head and we took off, up and down the steep hills of San Francisco. I sat on the edge of my seat the whole 15 minutes. This was our one chance, we didn’t have any other time to make this trip. We arrived at exactly 7:00 am, and rushed into the office. Other people were waiting and the bus driver greeted us with a big smile. We handed in our vouchers, and Marie silently made her way to the head of the line. We got front row seats just behind the driver. The sun was rising as we drove out of the city.
We drove and drove with a stop at a gas station in Livingston after two hours and then drove again. We got to see a movie about bears in the National Parks after the scenery got interesting. We went from the city to rolling hills to bigger hills as we approached the Sierra Nevada Mountains.
After another two hours we finally got to the Entrance sign:
But we still had to squeeze through the rock gate. It was tight but with careful driving we made it:
We made it. We were in the park at last. Tall granite mountains surrounded us and ribbons on water roared down from the mountain tops:
The rocks and falling water inspired me to try some Yoga poses to compliment them:
Luckily I didn’t fall with the water. After another more stable plank pose on a wonderful rock it was time to start back from our too short visit.
Our wonderful driver Chianti stopped on Treasure Island so we could take night photos of the city.
Despite the nerve racking start it was a wonderful day. Chianti dropped us off at our hotel at 9:30 pm exhausted, we fell into a deep sleep refreshed by a day in nature’s splendor.