An Open Letter to BART

I want to send out a huge thank you to the BART ticket booth guy who was working at the Downtown Berkeley station on 9-17 around 9 am. You really took a very embarrassing situation and made it comical and pleasant.

To start from the beginning, I was mostly asleep as I walked over to the South Hayward station and jumped on the BART train. I didn’t look at my ticket before boarding. Once I got off the train at Downtown Berkeley, my ticket was rejected at the exit. Low and behold, I did not have enough money on my card.

For those of you that don’t ride the BART, you can add money to your ticket with a credit card or cash before entering the station. Once you put your ticket in the turn stile, your only option to add money is with cash.

So I am in the Downtown Berkeley station trying to get out, but I don’t have any change on me. As luck would have it, I just emptied my change out of my pockets that morning. Frustrated with myself, I walked over to the ticket booth and explained to the guy what happened. He asked me if I had low dollar value tickets, which I don’t. He then asked me where I worked. I told him where I worked (which is up the stairs and a across the street) and he told me that he would let me out if I brought the seventy cents back. I told him I would, with a very serious face. I was extremely embarrassed about my stupid mistake. At this point the guy smiled and told me to head out the exit gate. He also told me that if I didn’t bring the change back, he would come after me. He then laughed a hearty laugh and my embarrassment faded. I laughed with him and my day became so much better. Twenty minutes later, I gave the change to him. He laughed again and told me I could have come back at lunch. I thanked him, smiled and went about my day.

This guy took a really embarrassing and stupid experience and turned it into a five star experience. I am happy to have crossed his path because it made me a better person for the day.


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