Thumbnail: Journey

Bus rides are always either real­ly good or real­ly bad.

They’re real­ly good when I find a win­dow seat. That’s when I can tune out com­plete­ly, lose myself in my music, and become total­ly obliv­i­ous to any­thing going on around me. I get to watch every­thing pass by and drift in and out of my thoughts. It’s when I get the most think­ing done dur­ing the day (even more than in the show­er).

They’re real­ly bad when I can’t find a seat and I’m left stand­ing up. I keep my music low so that I can hear any announce­ments by the bus dri­ver, or peo­ple try­ing to get by. I’m always on guard about where I should be mov­ing or when a seat might become avail­able. And music on a low vol­ume isn’t real­ly worth lis­ten­ing to.

One of the rea­sons why I haven’t bought a car is because I’d lose all my think­ing time. Every day I can reflect for an hour going to work and an hour com­ing back when I’m on the bus. If I was in a car, I’d be too busy pay­ing atten­tion to the road, to bad dri­vers, to traf­fic lights, to pedes­tri­ans. I would­n’t be able to think, and I’d prob­a­bly write a lot less.

Some days, when I’m com­ing close to my stop, I wish that the bus would just keep going, just keep dri­ving, and nev­er stop. I’d ride it from morn­ing to night, lis­ten­ing to my music, just enjoy­ing the feel­ing of going some­where and nowhere at the same time.

Thinking about noth­ing and every­thing.


  1. What’s sad is that I moved from Philly to a sub­urb in Massachusetts, where there is no pub­lic transportation…and I went from writ­ing every sin­gle time I was on the bus or sub­way to writ­ing on my breaks at work…to not writ­ing at all. I can’t wait till I move back to Philly…

  2. I hope I’d nev­er get to not writ­ing at all if I ever stopped tak­ing the bus. It think it would just take me longer to col­lect my thoughts. I hate being depen­dent on some­thing like that, but there’s always the option of tak­ing the bus with no des­ti­na­tion for the sake of writ­ing.

  3. Hm. It’s not just that there isn’t pub­lic tran­sit here, though. It’s a num­ber of dif­fer­ent fac­tors that sort of suck the inspi­ra­tion to write from me. Just a monot­o­nous life with very lit­tle stim­u­lus, except what’s good to look at on the inter­net or on music tele­vi­sion. It’s inter­est­ing, how­ev­er, to see how peo­ple become the sterotyp­i­cal sub­ur­ban types. There real­ly is noth­ing for them to do.

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