Guess what everybody – I’ve been carless for over a month now, I’m still alive and I haven’t yet had to attract any rides while standing on the side of the road with my thumb sticking out (though I’ve considered it on multiple occassions.) On one of my first carless nights I ended up in a $20 cab ride which will never happen again, and I have gotten rides from friends on multiple occasions, but most of the time I take the bus around the Mile High City and accept it as my reality.
In a way taking the bus around isn’t really terrible, it’s just a bit more inconvenient and I’m getting a bit more exercise…not that that’s a bad thing. In fact, just the other day I chose to walk two miles down snow-packed streets and sidewalks when I missed my third and final connecting bus to work. Sure, I was a little sweaty when I got there, and sure, I arrived late and would have made it in the exact same time had I just sat and waited for the next bus to come along…but yeah, I decided to walk…kind of like the day I decided to ride my bicycle eight miles to work (when I was not trained for that sort of commute.) Neither were my best ideas, but I made it to my destination either way…
Riding the bus is WAY more interesting than riding in a car. Every day I am left with funny, crazy or interesting stories of things I witnessed or experienced while traveling, and I have come to call these moments “Buscapades.” My goal is to have a daily Buscapades Blog, but to start it off I am going to re-cap some of the finer moments I’ve enjoyed during my first month of being a public transit whore.
One of my first and favorite buscapade memories is of this older woman I encountered on the 40 bus one weekday morning. The bus was crowded and at one stop she stood up and told some guy who had just boarded to sit in her seat.
“What perfect timing!” she exclaimed to the stranger. “I’m getting off at the next stop. You can sit in my seat! A whole row to yourself! Testing! Testing!”
The man sat down and she was standing near him, trying to give him some sort of religious declaration about how the world needs more people like him, in between yelling out “Testing! Testing!” The man never once replied to her, and when he began chatting on his cell phone it was apparent to me that he didn’t even speak English, which made me laugh.
“I can tell it’s going to be a busy day,” the woman then bellowed out to no one in particular. “Busy and demanding! Just like Vietnam! Let’s get this over with, Benny!”
And then, “Testing! Testing!”
Much to my dismay for entertainment purposes, the woman soon got off the bus and carried on her merry way. I at least hope she spent the rest of the day entertaining more of her religious thoughts than her Vietnam War thoughts…