Every night I tell myself “self, tomorrow you are going to get up at 5:45am, have a relaxing shower, eat a healthy breakfast, and leisurely walk to the number 97 bus stop.” Every morning, at around 6:20am or so, I yell at myself (and anyone else who will listen – generally the cats) “self!! What the fuck is your problem?”. I spend the next half hour running around like a mad woman, tripping over the cats, cursing at my container of mousse for getting clogged up, really cursing at it for suddenly dumping 12 lbs of mousse into my hands, misplacing my bus pass 100 times, and finally falling out of the front door, cold coffee in hand, only to stumble down five flights of bloody stairs because the elevator has, once again, decided to disappear into the abyss.
About a week ago, I was having one of these all-too-common mornings. I ran out the door completely certain that I was going to have to hire a jet plane to make the number 97 when I looked up through my retardedly messy and stupid bangs (see previous post) and saw a number 8 bus parked in front of my apartment. Now, the number 8 goes directly to the number 97 but generally leaves at 7:01 or 7:16, the first of which I always miss and the second of which is way too late. I looked at my watch. 7:10. Huh. Counting my lucky stars that the bus was late/early, I ran up to it, leapt on, and was suddenly greeted by a cheery “GOOD MORNING!”. Stunned, I looked up to see a smiling bus driver.
A smiling bus driver?
One has only to live in Ottawa for a couple of weeks and take the bus with semi-regularity to realize that the bus drivers in Ottawa are some of the rudest and certainly the lamest bunch of people I’ve encountered in the customer service industry. I understand why to a certain extent. Spending my day listening to a billion stupid questions like “will this bus take me to China?” when the bus clearly only goes to the local shopping center would get annoying. And then there’s the smelly people, which Ottawa seems to have a lot of. And the idiots who decide to stab one another on the bus. Or the nutbars who try, unsuccessfully, to argue their way to a free ride. But I’ve seen bus drivers in Ottawa yell at women with strollers for no reason or give attitude to poor kids who are just asking for directions. I’ve seen bus drivers slam doors on people, not stop at the stops even when the bell thingy is pulled, and forget to change their signs so that people (me) get on a bus that’s supposed to go one place (work) and then doesn’t (fuck) and the bus driver says “oops” and just disappears leaving people (me) in the middle of buttfucknowhere. Every bus driver I’ve ever encountered here has grunted at me when I get on the bus and say “hello” and has taken away all of my inspiration to say “thank you” at the end of my ride.
But I digress.
So I get on this number 8 bus. And it takes me swiftly to the number 97. And I get to work on time.
The next day, I’m late again. Again I run outside looking more than slightly frazzled. Again I look up through hideous bangs and see a number 8 bus at exactly 7:10. Interesting. I hop aboard and am again greeted by a cheery “HELLO THERE!”. And every morning since has been the same. I’ve checked the schedule, and there is no number 8 bus that is supposed to stop at 7:10. I’ve called the OC Transpo line and there is no number 8 bus scheduled to stop at 7:10. I’ve watched the 7:01 bus leave and have noted that the 7:16 bus which appears behind my number 97 at just the right time. I can only conclude that the number 8 bus which arrives at 7:10 is a magical bus complete with magical, and happy, bus driver. And this makes me happy.