Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Cable Car Confessions: Monkeying Around

Ding ding all aboard. "Next stop Powell Street Chinatown. Tickets please show me your tickets please." As you know riding the cable car is one of my favorite weekly things that I do. But this cable car confession surprised even me when I saw a family and their service monkey get on the Powell-Mason cable car line. (Catch up here on the other cable car confession chapters.)

It was a Friday. I was leaving a long afternoon of volunteering downtown at an organization that creates talent shows for inner city children. There was a lot to do preparing for the upcoming show like prepare clipboards, paper copying, name tags, dolly’s, boxes, lights and microphones. The talent show was scheduled for the next day so everything had to be ready.

I was looking forward to my nightly trip home on the cable car. I had a great book with me, my iPod and the cable car wasn’t filled with tourists yet. After I got on to the cable car, I opened my book and entered my own little world of it's new chapter. Then suddenly I heard people talking and squealing with delight.

I thought to myself ' Have we passed Lombard Street yet? That was fast.'

Actually the people were squealing at the newest passenger that had entered our cable car, a monkey. Yes, that’s right a monkey dressed in a T-shirt that said ask to take my picture please. The monkey was very calm, seemed gentle and was looking at the squealing passengers.

This monkey was not alone, but with a family. The two parents (forgive me) I can only describe as hippies and their son seemed a little uncomfortable with all of the attention that they were getting.

So the monkey “family” sat down and waited for the cable car driver to come and collect their tickets. Now this is where I ask you why would a monkey be on a cable car? 

The other people on the cable car started to ask the mother (who seemed to be the leader of the family) if they could take pictures. She told them no, but thank you. I continued to watch the scene out of the corner of my eye, but pretended to read my book. Although I was also thrilled to see this monkey sitting so close to me, I felt a little attitude from the family. So the mother looked over at me and I gave her a little smile.

Finally the cable car seemed to quiet down with noise. Call it perfect timing that I looked up at the family as mother monkey maternally told the monkey to hold on tight as we went over a bump. And the monkey did. He grabbed the bar to steady himself. It was truly amazing. And then mother monkey laughed and looked around to see who was watching and caught my stare.

“That was amazing!” I told her
“It was!” She replied “ I’ve never seen him do that before. Did you know that he can understand English”
“I’m sure he knows English better then most of us.” I said laughing
and then I asked her “I was just curious how much does it cost for your monkey to ride the cable car?”
She said with a smile “All service animals ride for free.”
Please stop by Fifi flowers blog today to check out my first guest blogging post. I love the painting that Fifi did of a cafĂ© photo that I took in Paris. Don't you just love it? Thank you Fifi. 

OK so my question to you is what does a monkey have to do to become a service animal? :) And where can I get a T-shirt in my size that says ask before you take my picture?


Dollface said...

I went to San Francisco a few years back and rode the trolley, got the most amazing sushi dishes in Chinatown... awwww... my bf wants a pet monkey, figures!! xxooo

Joanie M said...

I love this story!

Laura said...

Dollface: But where would you keep the pet monkey? :)

Joanie M: Me too. I felt like I was in a scene in a movie.

Debbie said...

I love that painting too! I have a secret artist inside me. Sadly, she can't get out!

Laura said...

Debbie: I think your artist is shown with your clothes! Isn't that picture wonderful. Thank you for your comment.

Dionne said...

I love SF! The cable cars are so cute, and for some reason are more social than busses. Maybe because everyone is more jolly and relaxed on a cable car. Or maybe because some of the people on the cable cars have cute little monkeys with them!

Fifi Flowers said...

Thank you for guest bloggin for me... Everyone wants to hang out with us in a cafe in Paris!
Can't wait for next week!

Char said...

I'm late today with my readings - but what a cute and fun read!

Laura said...

Dionne: Hey you. I know right. SO much more social and more comfortable. I always have a smile on my face and feel proud that I'm on the cable car. I wish you could have seen that monkey. So cute.

Hi Fifi: So glad we have gotten such a nice response. I would hang out with you in a cafe anytime. Hmmm what to write for next week...

Char: I appreciate your dedication and love when you comment. Glad you liked it!

Cris, Artist in Oregon said...

Thanks for the well wishes on my blog. I did enjoy your Guest blogging today on Fifi's blog and the painting by Fifi of the photo you took. I look forward to next week. How fun to live in San Francisco.

Bella said...

Hahaha, this cable car confession was priceless! And the fact that the little fella was sporting a t-shirt is just too hilarious, and somehow, unsurprisingly adorable!

Wonderful post!!!

Laura said...

Cris: Welcome and thanx again. I love the painting as well.

Bella: Wish you had been with me. Can you imagine the two of us with that monkey?

Isabelle said...

cute monkey hehe :)

Pink Peony said...

LOL damn there were no monkeys riding for me to see. But, there are days when I feel like a "service monkey" can I ride for free? :)