I Missed the Bus!

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Karla Pazos, Reluctant Car Owner

A year has passed since we left North for spring break and never came back. I know many of my friends and peers miss attending school in person, and quite frankly, I’m surprised more people aren’t talking about how much joy comes with taking the city bus.

Honestly, the thought of taking the bus is the only reason I’m even considering going back to school in person. So like the well-prepared, overachieving student I am, I decided to make a pros and cons list on going back to North. However, after a few minutes, without realizing it, I ended up with a list filled with only pros.

There’s just no denying it…the bus ride is the highlight of my school day. Why do I love it? 

  • I get my cardio every day walking 15 minutes to the second furthest bus stop in order to get a seat on the bus. As an added bonus, the Arizona sun gets me sweating, and the pounds just melt off.  It also finally gave my pale legs that nice shorts tan I wanted without having to lay down in the sun.
  • The bus has taught me important life lessons, like having to push people out of the way in order to get a seat.  
  • I love the comfortable gray seats, still nice and warm from the last person’s butt, with a hint of their odor. It’s like having a new friend. As an added bonus, the color really hides any possible stains or bodily fluids.
  • The distinct perfume of a certain green plant gives the bus a feeling of being close to nature…or maybe that’s just the contact high. 
  • We’ve all crave human contact, and nothing feels so intimate as a hundred freshmen covered in too much Axe body spray, bumping their backpacks against me.  
  • I watch the courage of teenagers as they stand up to the ignorant bullying of the bus driver when he shouts at them “Move to the back! Make space for the others!”  But these heroes stand their ground…and it brings a tear to my eye every day.
  • I see true friendship on display in the thoughtfulness of students who use their bags to reserve seats for their friends, even if that friend never seems to show up. 
  • Nothing beats the live autobiographies recited by older residents who would feel compelled to tell me their entire life story on the 45 minute ride to my stop.
  • I find myself in need of the daily learning opportunities for students when someone lectures them on respect and common courtesy by calling them out in front of everyone for not moving or offering their seat.
  • I can’t count the times I opted out of  getting Starbucks in the morning because the driver would make me throw it away before entering the bus. In retrospect, this made me healthier and saved me a couple of bucks!
  • The guessing game of attempting to predict when the bus would show up since it never came at the scheduled time.
  • Meeting an endless amount of colorful people that would constantly ask for spare change and where I got off.
  • The perfect ballerina level balance I developed due to having nothing but air to hold on to when the driver would randomly brake. 
  • What I love the most was watching the facial expressions of people change from relief to disappointment when the driver would skip a stop because the bus was at full capacity.