Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Never a Dull Journey

Hello Rants readers.
I know you're probably thinking, how many more times can I rant about the 46 bus route? But if you had to take it every day, you'd understand. There really is never a dull journey.......

So, last night I was heading home from a private music lesson, teaching an 8 year old. Amongst other theory and music related exercises, I am helping him learn the piano. And practising for his Christmas show meant playing 'O Little Town of Bethlehem' over and over for an hour. Normally we do around 30 minute's piano and do some other stuff, but not last night. He had learnt the right hand tune part, and was learning the left hand part, which meant I had to sing the tune again and again, whilst he played the left hand part. I haven't sung so much in years. It was definitely a Primary School flash back. So now you have some context......

Anyhoo, I set off for the bus stop and I may not be able to time travel, but I can feel time stop. It's called: waiting for the 46. 12 minutes, it said on the electronic board. I stood reading my book and every time I looked up, the numbers were descending but way too slowly. By the time the bus came, I'd been waiting over 20 minutes and according to the electronic display there were two other 46's directly behind it. The joy.

So, I get on, bury my head in the book and switch off. That is, until we creep closer to Kings Cross Station. The traffic is always tricky at that time and you have to queue to turn right for the station bus stop. This guy gets up from his seat, way too early, and stands by the door. Now my seat is right by the door, facing this man. Firstly, he smells like three breweries threw up on him, and he was muttering to himself, with every other word an F and a Geoff. He tried to engage a couple of passengers, but they turned away. So once he realises the bus isn't going anywhere particularly fast, he starts unscrewing a panel above the door. That's when a few of us jump in: What are you doing? Are you alright, mate? Etc. To which we receive a hasty, 'fuck off'. Meanwhile the driver seems oblivious. I mean, I know he couldn't' really do anything, what with driving the bus, but he could have least made an announcement.

So, he's unscrewing this panel and trying to get out of the bus and that's when I step in: 'What are you trying to do?' I got a 'fuck off' and 'shut up' in reply. I told him, 'That won't open the door.' More abuse. Then one of the male passengers closed the panel and the drunk guy found the Emergency button. Now I need to point out here, that we were in the right lane, waiting to turn right, creeping forward at each light change. And next to us were three lanes of traffic including buses, cars and bicycles. So when he goes to press the Emergency button, I can't help but try to deter him. 'I wouldn't do that.' He smirked in my face and did it anyway. At this point I was getting pretty pissed off, so I said, 'Go on then. Do it.' This actually distracted him and the driver almost managed to get the doors closed, but the guy realised and leapt out. I can't tell you how lucky he was that there wasn't another bus coming at that point. Man, I'm grateful I didn't see someone splatted before my eyes. But really. WTF?

So that was last night. This morning when coming back from a music class at a nursery school, where there are a fuck tonne of roadworks, and temporary traffic lights everywhere, the bus driver was a mean prick. We had just pulled away - and when I say pulled away, we were still right by the kerb and about a foot from the bus stop when we were stopped by the temporary traffic lights. These lights keep us held for three or four minutes at a time, so when a man knocked on the window and asked - very nicely, I might add - if the driver could open the door, he refused. We were static, by the kerb, still right by the bus stop, and he wouldn't just open the door.

A lady sat near the front of the bus started asking the driver to open up, saying that it wasn't fair, but he just yelled at her and said he would lose his job. Then a few more of us joined in, saying he wasn't doing his job properly and we were still at the bus stop, so what was his problem. But he persevered. We waited, whilst the man stood outside the door, for minutes, just toying with him, and then the driver pulled away. What a tool!

So when I say there is never a dull moment of the 46, I really mean it. Drunk idiots endangering themselves, everyone on the bus and the surrounding vehicles, And drivers refusing to pick up passengers despite having the time and still being at the bus stop. It's madness I tell you. Madness!

I hope your public transport is less eventful than mine.