I forgot one of the bus tales, which happened awhile back. I emailed Erin and my parents about it, so I’m going to just paste that email here:
I get up at 5:30 every morning to get to work by 8, generally having enough time to get to the bus stop by 6:30. I got to the bus stop at 6:15 today, figured I was fine. The first bus was 15 minutes late. Okay, I can deal with that. Get on the train, everything is fine.
Then I get to the last leg of my trip, in the Valley, and everything goes to hell.
It starts with me stepping out to the North Hollywood bus station, and seeing my bus — number 426 — pull in and let people off.
“Oh good,” I think. “I’m right in time.”
I proceed to watch as the bus driver gets out and smokes for 30 minutes. They are allowed to take a 20-minute rest break every 4 hours of work. He just chose to do his in the middle of rush hour. You know, when everyone is trying to get to work on time.
After watching every single other bus for the entire terminal come and go (often twice), the 426 pulls up and we get on our way.
Two blocks later, the driver stops over to pick up a person in a wheelchair. This is his first time picking up someone in a wheelchair, so he breaks out the manual and makes sure he’s doing everything right.
Well, evidently the manual said nothing about parking too close to the curb, because the mechanism to lower the ramp for the wheelchair gets stuck, and the entire bus is trapped on the curb like a beached whale.
At first he just presses the same button for 5 minutes, trying to get it to work right.
Then he tells everyone to get to the other side of the bus, so we can try to tip it the other way, and get it off the curb.
Finally he has all of us (this is around 30 people, men, women, and children, half of whom don’t understand english) get off the bus and PUSH THE BUS OFF THE CURB. This thing had to have weighed around 5 tons. It wasn’t moving.
While all this is going on, the next 426 comes by and I get on that. As we’re driving off, he finally manages to get the ramp free, and the poor wheelchaired woman was able to get onto the bus.
I was a half hour late to work.