• NOW AVAILABLE!


     The CASUAL COMMUTER Riding With You On Your Way To Work

    by Vicky Semones

    Share a fascinating ride with The CASUAL COMMUTER and catch entertaining glimpses of San Francisco Bay Area commuters being themselves.

    Available through XLIBRIS PUBLICATIONS (click book cover)


    Also available at:

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Local Events

Montclair Village Clock

Montclair Village Clock

Montclair Women's Cultural Arts Club

Montclair Women's Cultural Arts Club

Two recent local events provided perfect venues to get the word out, some-more.  The annual MONTCLAIR VILLAGE ARTS &  CRAFTS FESTIVAL, where we wandered among the  booths full of  unique and wonderful creative expression. We shared lattes and stories with local carpoolers.  In an hour and a half, we handed out 145 flyers.  Then, we performed an ‘act’ at the MONTCLAIR WOMEN’S CULTURAL ARTS CLUB, whch sponsors an informal ‘show’ on the 3rd Thursday, monthly from Sept to May.  Lots of music – planned and spontaneous;  authors reading their fiction or poetry; and then an ‘open mic’ for 5-minute presentations.  Cindie and I pretended to think we were at the Montclair carpool stop (there isn’t one), then took advantage of our ‘mistake’ by reading a couple of sensuous stories and announcing my Book Launch.  By all accounts we captivated the audience of about 50 with our  humorous and targeted presentation.  Just shameless and a lot of fun!
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Fruitvale and Montana ~ Oakland

Montana & Flagg

Montana & Flagg

Mopntana & Flagg ~ Park 'n Ride

Montana & Flagg ~ Park 'n Ride

 

 

 

 

 

 Nicely situated under two shade trees, across from the Park and Ride lot under the overpass at Flagg Street.  Grab the morning newspaper at the newsstand; catch a free ride to The City; then do some shopping at Farmer Joe’s for dinner tonight. Most  drivers begin roll down their windows well in advance of our approach to give them a flyer.  7:30 – 9:30AM, 227 flyers.

Oakland Ave and Hillside ~ Piedmont

Oakland Ave & Hillside

Oakland Ave & Hillside

 

 The quietude and mature canopy continue up Oakland Avenue  along with narrow sidewalks lined with lush flora.  With only a couple of exceptions, everyone is receptive to our flyers.  Someone  commented: ‘I was wondering when someone would write this.’  And, as we’ve heard at a couple of other stops, someone said they have heard about us at work – that really helps to know there may be a  little ‘buzz’ in The City, ’cause it’s hard to tell out here at 7AM!  From 7:30-8:45A, #109 flyers.

 

Oakland Ave and Monte Vista ~ Oakland

Oakland & Monte Vista

Oakland & Monte Vista

Pedestrians converge from all directions on this spot under a lovely shade tree on a bright morning in front of Plymouth Church, which is being  restored. The quiet neighborhood is dotted with  apartments and lush with mature flora.  Be careful of  that first step over the curbside pavers, exposed by years of wear. In response to our flyer, one woman said in a low, secretive  voice, that ‘The Casual Commuter’  will draw too much publicity to the casual carpool, and she likes it just the way it is!  An active two hours from 7:30 – 9:25AM and #339 flyers.

Park Blvd and Hampel ~ Oakland

 

Park Blvd & Hampel, Oakland

Park Blvd & Hampel, Oakland

The Park Presbyterian Church spire seems to rise from the street sign, as riders line up along the chain link fence at the empty corner lot across the street.  The neighborhood street seems sleepy, leaving one to wonder if there’ll be ample cars for the people in line.  A stop light at the corner makes for easy egress onto Park Blvd, and an AC (Alameda County)    TransBay  bus stop.  An easy and sunny   morning, from 7:15 – 9AM;  # 137 flyers.

Emeryville ~ Christie and 64th

Emeryville ~ Christie & 64th

Emeryville ~ Christie & 64th

How convenient for the residents of the condos at 6363 Christie:  the Casual Carpool, the Transbay bus, and BART Shopper  all line up along Christie, and the Public Market is just cross this little park!

A man visiting  from  Sacramento casts a sideways look at the carpool lineup, saying he’s never seen anything so…strange!  A young woman reads the flyer, pokes her head out of a waiting car window to ask if I’m the author – she’s thrilled and wants my autograph – imagine.   Two women we met at Powell & Commodore yesterday again walk by, saying they take that walk daily – burrr.  The carpool lineup is relaxed: cars tend not to pull up to the discrete carpool sign, and passengers tend to board from their place in line.  A pleasant 7:30-9:00AM effort; #188 flyers.

Emeryville Marina ~ Powell Street

 

Emeryville Marina Bus Stop

Emeryville Marina Bus Stop

A cold, cold, Bay breeze sweeps our  “sandwich boards” over  our heads on this gray morning. But we are soothed by the warmth of several riders. First there is  Peter, a  British-American who lives on a boat.  He ikes my description of Casual Commuters in line and, as an extrovert,  doesn’t  understand why riders don’t talk en route to S.F., even when they ride together alot.  Then there is Phoebe, a new rider who looks to us for reassurance because she needs to get to an appointment by 9AM, and usually takes the longer route of the “Emeryville Go-Around” to a bus to Bart to the City. And as Cindie’s lips turn blue with the cold and seeks shelter in the bus stop,  an   Hispanic woman  shakes my hand, then gives me a thumbs up as she boards the  “Go-Around”.  Thank you all.  From 7:30-9AM; #92 Flyers.