Up and Down Lombard Street?

Lombard Street in San Francisco is known for the one-way block on Russian Hill, where eight sharp turns are said to make it the crookedest street in the world. The street has been in scenes in many movies and part of a comedy sketch by Bill Cosby where he jokingly remarks that the flowers are planted for those people who killed themselves trying to drive down the crooked street.  


I was so fortunate to be able to spend two weeks in this personal favorite City by the Bay in January. One week was with my family for vacation and the second week was for a conference.  On vacation with the family I rented an SUV one day so that we could visit Twin Peaks, (hills near the center of San Francisco with a complete 360 degree view of the city), the redwoods in Muir Woods and walk the Golden Gate Bridge. Most everything in the city is accessible via walking or public transportation but this would be the most efficient way for us to visit these landmarks in one day.  


At the end of our adventurous day we headed back into the city and toward our hotel.  There was a point where a decision had to be made to go right down a street toward our hotel or head up Lombard street at a very steep grade to only arrive at the top of the crookedest street in the world and drive down the hairpin turns.  My husband is gently advising "no - turn right" and my son is nudging me to head straight up Lombard street.  


I wasn't that comfortable driving the over-sized vehicle in a town where compact cars are the norm and in the past I always felt like my vehicle was going to flip over backwards when driving up steep grades. Maybe it was a bad dream, maybe it was a movie where I saw that happen, but I'm pretty sure there weren't any documented cases of cars flipping over backwards driving up Lombard street.  So, in my head this conversation was going on - talking myself into and out of heading up the hill.  


Up and over won out. 


I headed straight up the hill at the light instead of turning right. Adrenaline was pumping as I still wondered - "would we make it up without tipping over backwards".  


We did.


And we made it down the crooked street slow and steady.  


It was exciting - maybe more so for the kids i the back seats with mom at the wheel.  


Don't let assumptions and negative self talk keep you from going up and over the hill. You  might just be missing out on the time of your life and the opportunity to show your kids you're not a chicken!