Shelia James is a super commuter — someone who travels at least 90 minutes to work.
As a Stockton resident and Bay Area worker, James' travel schedule can get hectic. She travels from Stockton to San Francisco for work by ACE, bus, and BART transportation.
"I leave home every day at 4 in the morning and if I walk to the office from Embarcadero I get to the office at 7:15," she explains.
It is said in order to fully understand someone, you have to walk a mile in their shoes… so that's what we did. We took her three-hour commute to work with her.
First stop: the 4:20 ACE from Stockton to Pleasanton. "I think that I would have re-thought this move if I didn't have the option for public transit," James explained.
According to Zillow, the average price for a house in Stockton is around $300,000. The average cost for a house in San Francisco is $1.3 million. It's that reason that she chose to work somewhere else.
"We need to start thinking of ways to reduce the cost of housing," James said. "We all don't need mega-mansions, but something that a person can live in with dignity."
Next stop: A 12-minute bus ride to the BART station.
"Why can't we, in the United States, come to San Francisco this morning and get back home from work before 4?" James asked. When people drive to work, the goal is usually to beat the traffic, but on this bus ride, the tone is different. "Even though we may not know one another, people tend to take care of one another," James said.
Final stop: We get on the BART from the Dublin area to San Francisco and the bus is packed. According to a new study from Apartmentlist, it's not a surprise.
Stockton and Modesto have the largest share of super commuters of any metro in the country.
While the commute can be tough, James makes time every day to enjoy the little things like walking the last 30 minutes to work.
"I lost part of myself by not taking the time to walk outside every day," she said.