Driving on Thanksgiving
This was the first major Holiday that I drove for Metro. I have been curious what it was like, other drivers have said they like driving the Holidays because its quiet, traffic is light and overall an easy day.
I started Route 21 at Westlake Village at about 9 am. There were no people to pick up, I continued on to my 4th stop, I picked up a woman, dressed nicely, black dress, hat, make up, high heels, as she paid her fare she wished me a Happy Thanksgiving, made her way to about midpoint in the bus, then made herself comfortable. She was my only passenger all the way into downtown.
As we approached her stop, she walked up to me and said, you know, I almost called UBER, I chuckled at the comment and replied, “I’m glad you’re here, you gave my morning a reason.” I hope you’re not driving all day and get to spend some time somewhere she said, “I drive till 4, then done I smiled. Thanks for the ride, was very nice, Happy Thanksgiving” You too I said as she left.
I picked up 3 homeless people at her stop, and 1 more dived into the back as the doors were closing. Mostly, I have found the Homeless keep to themselves, today they went out of their way to wish myself and others a Happy Thanksgiving,
There are several places that were providing meals today downtown, I stopped near those and dropped people off, picked people up. I made my way north with just a handful of people, the gentleman that dived into the back was now stretched out on the back seat. I drove through the Freemont neighborhood; the roads were very quiet. I continued to the Woodland park zoo and stopped to drop off a couple with a baby, the guy in back looked up, seemed confused leaped out the back as the doors closed. I had no passengers to Shoreline Community College.
I chuckled a bit.
2nd trip back intown was about the same, easy driving, easy friendly people.
3rd trip back up North, I had 2 wheelchairs, both were people that I had before, 1 Just isn’t nice, I ignore his demeanor, and not try to chat with him, the other one, she likes to chat a bit much and I lose track where she is in the conversation. But what disturbs me is, she only wears a ill-fitting T shirt, very dirty, sweatpants, today she had socks, she rarely baths, but she is very nice.
I stopped in Greenwood, drop them both off where they transfer to another bus, I pick up a guy dressed in a painters jump suit, ( white plastic) he is wearing green wooly socks no shoes, long beard, and crying, He is walking like his feet hurt and I ask if he needs some medical attention….. He sobs in his hands and yells how it’s all BS and he never took that stuff; he approaches my till and pulls out wads of cash and tries to find something less than 20s to pay his fare…. I hand him a transfer and said, this is on me today. He goes back to his seat and leans his head back and wails, wails…… loud sobs, I call this in, I’m concerned he may hurt himself, I try to communicate with him but can’t seem to connect, I stop just passed Holman road, he runs out.
I sit a moment and gather my breath; the other passenger looks at me through the mirror and we both shake our heads.
As she leaves a few stops later, she just says, wow. Take care. You too, thank you.
My last trip was pretty slow, still not many people, the community kitchens had served their food, and the people from them with their left overs were sharing, making sure myself and others were offered Turkey, potatoes, pie, they were caring and communicating more than on other days.
I found it pleasurable.