SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – A parking ticket on the windshield is not a welcome sight for any driver. But when the driver is making her way across San Francisco performing charitable acts a parking ticket can really sting.
Perhaps the ultimate irony for Cynthia Butler is the fact that she can perform community service to avoid paying the nearly $300 fine for her recent infraction, which – of course – was committed as she performed community service.
She is a volunteer for Food Runners, a charity group that collects leftover or extra food from restaurants and takes that food to places where the needy and hungry go to be fed, such as senior centers.
She drives a Smart Car, making it slightly easier to navigate the congested streets of San Francisco. Still, parking can be tricky. She reasons that because her car is so small and she’s only curbside for a few minutes while she runs in and out of establishments, picking up or dropping off food, it’s OK to park in less than ideal spots.
“It literally takes five minutes to walk in there and pick up the seven or eight boxes of leftover food and leave it here,” she explained.
Sometimes, though, she parks in outright illegal spots.
“I was parked right here (in a bus zone),” she pointed to the curb where she was ticketed. “And the woman came by and she said I’m writing you a ticket and I said but I’m doing a charity event, could you please let me go this once and she wrote the ticket anyway.”
Now, she owes the City of San Francisco $267.