Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Public Transportation: The Sport of Kings

If you want to get royally frustrated (har, har), utilize the public transportation in a medium-sized city that has the infrastructure of, say, Mayberry. I grew up in a teeming metropolis where public transportation was the norm rather than the exception. Now, I'm living in a city where it's the exact opposite.

Anyway, so a couple of nights a week I'm on campus until about 7pm and rather than have the old man and DJ schlep all the way from home to pick me up in the Fit, I've been taking the bus home. And, of course, every time I take the bus it's raining or freezing. But I've been doing it.

The thing that really frustrates me is that the buses don't run that often, and run less often in the evening, so it takes about 3 times what my normal bike-time would be to get home. It might be okay for all you sleepy southerners to take 3 hrs to get home, but not this city-slicker!

I see a lot of frustrated people on the bus and this is why. Also, they moved the bus depot from the very convenient downtown location to this secluded outback behind the power plant, and at night it's kind of creepy. Unless you have Cory instructing you on where to get 50-dollar tattoos nearby, which I did. And mighty grateful was I for the information. And then, when you finally do get on the connecting bus, you have to wait 15 minutes while the bus driver takes a bathroom break -- c'mon! The bus driver can hold "it" to do one more run so I can get home at some reasonable hour. And the lady next to me says, "I'm ready to go..." and I'm like, "I feel ya."

I shouldn't complain, though -- in Gainesville, UF students and staff get to ride the bus for free. And on my route from the downtown depot they have the spiffy new buses with the second tier seating in the back, like they have at Disney. Cory and I had a good time talking about the new buses and he knew a lot about how they wash the buses and where the bus wash is, which is kind of fascinating because you never think about washing big things like buses.
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