Bus Report #394
Back to decent MUNI service and low blood pressure.
Yesterday I took the 22 instead of the 10. No problems. Some kids got on and walked to the back, and sat down across from me. One of them had a green backpack. He set it down carefully and it made a 'clunk' sound. He and his friends exchanged worried looks. I got it: the backpack was full of beers. The boys bent over the pack and one of them unzipped the main compartment and peered in. Offered his boys a thumb's up.
At Mission, a couple of girls got on. One was wearing striped suspenders, striped earrings and a matching had with a striped band, and huge sunglasses. Her friend was dressed more subdued, but still looked strange to me. They were going to the Marina, and sat in the front of the bus talking to the driver.
An elderly man got on and gave the girls a hard stare.
"Front is for older people, not young people," he told the girls. "You move."
And they did.
This morning my bus was pretty empty, just me, Whitney, and a few other nondescript regulars.
I got out at my normal stop and went to get coffee.
They had a new girl working there, who greeted everyone with a wide smile and a loud, "are you just having a coffee?"
The guy in front of me replied just as loudly, "I'm having a coffee."
I exchanged a conspiratorial glance with another regular who was adding a bit of sugar to his coffee. He rolled his eyes back at me, then leaned in and said, "Someone should turn down the dimple patrol." Meaning, I assume, that the smiley girl should be quieter or something.
But I didn't mind.
As I crossed Potrero, a 22 came up behind me and slowed down. I looked up. The driver was one of my usual drivers. He looked at me and gestured for me to hop on board. I shook my head, smiled, thanked him and waved him on, since I wanted to walk.
The good feelings continued later, as I found myself at the Potrero Center to meet someone and then walking back to work because I forgot my wallet. I passed by the garage where I always say 'hi' to the guys in the morning. The youngish guy hanging around in one of the bays said hi, then yelled a moment later, "Hey, George wants to talk to you."
I turned around and walked into the garage for the first time. "George, huh?" I said. I didn't know any of their names, just their faces, and couldn't imagine what anyone would want to say to me.
George came out through the back of the garage and said, "Haven't seen you in a few days, how are you?" A ha. George is the nicest of the garage guys, he's the main one I talk to in the mornings. Now I have a name to match his face.
"Great," I said. "You guys been closed?"
"Nah, just playing hooky." He smiled and held something out to me. It was a pint glass with the name of the garage on it, filled with candy and pens and pencils, also bearing the name of the garage.
"Happy holidays," he said.
I thanked the guys and kept walking.
I got my wallet and headed back down the hill. I took the 22 to the 3 Jackson, then walked the rest of the way home.
Have a great New Year, everyone!
Here's to a 2009 with on time arrivals and departures and courteous fellow MUNI riders.