I have lived in the San Francisco area for more than a quarter-of-a-century. I have driven across the Golden Gate Bridge far too many times to count. The entire time I was at the Chronicle, it was a twice-a-day occurrence. Multiple 2 times a day by five days a week by two years. Add 2 times a day times four days a week times eight years. Add another 500 times in day trips and treks to or from the city.
Let's just say it's about 5,000 times. Roughly.
Nearly every time I have crossed the bridge, there have been tourists walking it. But never me.
On the first official day of spring break, the kids and I, along with J. and her two daughters, went for a spontaneous walk across the bridge. The boys and I walked the entire length. J. and her two and Daughter walked more than halfway and then turned back, fetching the car (thus eliminating an enormous amount of whining from kids forced to walk across the bridge and back again).
I did try to walk it once before, along with about 300,000 other folks one early morning in May 1987.
I failed to get past the first tower.
It took nearly 24 years, but I finally made it across, finishing what I started. I guess it's time I actually started a real bucket list. 'Cause I've got something to cross off it.
[Photo courtesy Deanne Fiztmaurice, San Francisco Chronicle]