The Hunting of the Snark

05/04/2010

Bus’s!

Filed under: Snarky — Jeremy Irish @ 07:32
Tags: ,

‘Buses’ ought to be a four-letter word.

My wife and I frequently find ourselves saying it, by itself, as an expression of disgust… with an expression of disgust. In fact, I think I will defy punctuation and give it honorary four-letter word status: ‘Bus’s!’

Bus’s are a necessary evil for us, having never bought a car since immigrating to the UK. They do on the surface seem to be a practical option, and we have managed to get by, but relying on them is not without many, many shortcomings that I’m sure I will continue to detail.

For now I’ll just start with my favourite incident. I had been travelling on the same route for several weeks and normally boarded at the Durham bus station after leaving work. On one particular evening, though, I had been to the county’s main library to pick up a hard-to-find boxed set of Star Trek: Voyager, and so I thought I’d try catching the bus from the nearest stop. Why not?

At that stop, there are two long bus shelters, and I wasn’t sure which one I needed to stand at. I asked another passenger, who vaguely thought it might be the second one; then I looked for posted schedules without success. I stood at the second shelter and when my bus came along about 20 minutes later, I very clearly put my arm out and waited for the driver to pull over.

He didn’t turn on his indicator. I waved widely and made direct eye contact. He showed no sign of slowing down. With difficulty I resisted the impulse to jump out in front of him, which probably wouldn’t have got me home any quicker as he had to be doing at least 45 mph.

And so he cruised on by.

I stepped out of the shelter to refer to the sign with a code to send a text message for bus status information, and while I was texting, I missed another one.

Another 20 minutes later, I managed to flag a bus down at the first shelter, and when I asked the driver, he told me they can’t stop at the second one because there isn’t enough time to move over two lanes to make a right turn. (Ha.)

Generally, after that, I went back to walking to the bus station no matter where I was when home time came. Bus’s!

– The Snark

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