I have been taking the bus for most of my adult working life. For a few years I succumbed to the joys and convenience of driving my car, but a new job with more expensive parking and different hours had me hanging up the car keys and picking up a new bus pass. I have to be honest, I don’t mind the bus. I see it as 30 minutes of uninterrupted reading time, which if you know me at all can be translated into 30 minutes of Heaven. The few things I can’t stand are being jammed in like sardines and having to stand all the time. I really hate that. And it cuts into my reading time. I have been using the same park and ride for a long time and over the years it has gotten more and more crowded, and I am at the point now where unless I show up 15 minutes late, every bus is jammed to the rafters with people and I am stuck at the front section of the bus with nothing to hold onto except that really high bar made for tall people. Which means no reading. And lots of armpits at nose level. Yuck.
In March, they opened a new park and ride which is a lot closer to my home but further from the kids’ school, so not as convenient during the school year. At this new lot I park about 4 inches from the bus stop which means I don’t have to worry about weather or crazy drivers or parkers. The bus always has a few seats available and never ever gets completely full. The ride is pretty quick as it only stops on demand so unless someone is getting on it just zips by. And here is the real thing. It is full of country dwellers. So when you sit down, the person beside you says “good morning.” When you get off, they say “have a nice day.” Fellow passengers look out for each other and make sure that you have enough room on the seat and that your bag has a place to go. They make jokes amongst each other when the driver takes a turn too quickly and we all have to hang on. I had forgotten just how nice people can be. I am really appreciating this new bus route and the change in ambience on board.