I am not sure if I mentioned it here, or not, but recently I have started taking a city bus to and from work. It has been well over 30 years since I took a bus regularly and I have decided that riding the bus daily is not for the fickle-hearted or for sissies.
I had no idea how much bus travel had changed in all these years - and that's not even taking into consideration the people who are taking the bus every morning and evening.
To begin with - bus drivers no longer wear hats.... did you know that? But the one who drives my 6:45 am bus wears shorts - even when it is -5C!
And then there are the buses them selves. The new buses are much smaller, and are designed for every type of passenger. The front of the bus lowers to curb level to allow wheel chairs and strollers easy access... and the long bench seats usually located at the front of the bus, flip up to allow space for these strollers and wheelchairs.
So along comes me - my first day on the bus, I have travelled to work sitting on the front bench seat of both buses I have been on - and now I am on the bus returning home - again on the front bench seat. I like this seat for several reasons - the most important one being that I can see the stops and might actually be able to figure out where to get off the darn bus when the time comes... the second reason is the floor to ceiling pole that I think I need to pull my butt off the seat as the bus is careening down the street at 70 km an hour!
So there I sit - I have my ipod on, my buds in my ears ( I am not going to look like I don't belong). I am relaxing after a long day at work, thinking ahead to my crafting evening, and I have not really even realized that the bus has stopped. But all of a sudden there is a ballet occurring across from where I am sitting. Two people who had been sitting on the bench seat across from me have shot out of their seats and moved down several rows, another person from several rows down has run to the front bench and flipped it up... Cripes... I didn't even know you could do that! Coming on the bus is a man in a wheelchair, and a lady pushing a stroller, someone is yelling at ME to move, and actually pulling at my jacket. That was lesson one of bus etiquette.
Then there was the morning earlier this week, when it was freezing rain and 90 km winds - I got on the bus, anxious to do so to warm up, and I swear everyone on it had overdosed on Garlic the night before!
Do you know they don't have hand sanitizers on the bus? Now, wouldn't that be a great idea?
And yesterday - well, don't you know, there I am again, on my way home and a fight breaks out between the person sitting in front of me, and the one sitting beside me... The "F" bomb is flying low, there is pushing and shoving and my shoulders are as flat against the bus as they could possibly be - but still the person beside me has managed to elbow me a time or two in his anger... do I want off.... OH Yeah! Do I get off... NO!
I sit quietly, think about bears and angels and Nat King Cole... and ride on home.
As I get off the bus at the end of my journey, I turn and thank the driver, and he smiles and says back...."Thank you too... today is my first day on the job."
Poor guy - I think I would be planning a career change, if I were sitting in his seat!