commute.jpg  I commute into the Big City three times a week – there and back – round trip – from my Attic abode to my office door.  I travel via public transportation.  Well actually I either walk or drive the mile or so to the Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) parking lot, get on a BART train, and then catch a municipal (muni) bus, disembark, and walk the rest of the way to the office.  In the mornings this is approximately a one hour and 40 minute commute (when I drive to the station).  The return trip is about one hour and 15 minutes, door-to-door.  When you multiply the daily commute time by three and then by four (or some equivalent of a month), the minutes and hours add up, quickly. 

So it’s a good thing that there is always, and I do mean always, something to entertain and occupy one’s mind. 

Yesterday morning’s BART train conductor was in a very good upbeat mood and as a result he put some effort into finding fresh ways to say the same message over and over.  He kindly reminded passengers to look about their seat in order not to leave any personal belongings behind.  His voice was cheerful and he made me smile. 

The muni bus drivers have, overall, been okay.  Last night’s bus driver was in a bad mood.  He lectured one poor customer almost to tears for running after the bus when ‘you know that I cannot stop for you between stops,’ but he did, stop for her.  I wondered if she would have rather he’d driven on by than endure his lengthy reprimand.  He also seemed to take delight in starting and stopping the bus quickly, causing us all to lurch about, back and forth, in our seats or on our feet.  Luckily for me, the ride was only about 25 minutes of jerky stops and starts. 

It could be worse.  A lot worse.  I could be driving my very old car (aka Harvey) who has standard transmission across the bridge and up and down the hills of the Big City, twice a day, three days a week.  Yeah, that is a no brainer for me.  As much as I love Harvey or Harv as I kindly call him, I know his limitations. 

Here’s one of my ongoing curiosities:  why do muni riders conform to the requirement of leaving the front seats for seniors and people with disabilities, without having to be asked to get their butts up while BART riders simply bury their faces in their newspapers, pretending not to see the elder who is standing with the aid of their cane?  

These and many other curiosities entertain and distract me during my commute.  The distracting factor comes in handy when sitting next to someone who is really really odiferous or when sitting down on a big dark stain that looks dry but feels damp or when everywhere you look, someone is picking their nose.