I’ve only been on a few King County Metro bus rides since our without wheels experiment began, but I’m enjoying the ride so far. As mentioned in a previous post, I get to see more of the city because I’m not focused on driving from point A to point B. As I walk from bus stop to destination, I’m noticing neighborhood landscaping, and budding flowers and leaves — yes, our spring is in full bloom (sorry Northeasterners!) — as well as the variety of architectural influences that abound in Seattle’s varied neighborhoods.
And while most people on the King County Metro busses are quiet — with noses buried in books, phones or tablets, or fully distracted by the music pumping through their headphones — I prefer to listen and engage with other riders if the opportunity presents itself.
During one stop, a dad and his four-year-oldish daughter stepped on and sat across from me. I commented on her pretty pink boots and she smiled and said “thank you.” She then proceeded to sing “The Wheels on the Bus” and she knew all the verses. It was precious. It reminded me of when my son sang the same song 20 years ago — especially the verse “the driver on the bus says ‘move on back, move on back, move on back’ …” My little boy, who’s now a craft cocktail bartender at Tini Bigs in Lower Queen Anne, had an affinity for “move on backs” ages ago. If you drop by Tini Bigs, ask for Kyle and ask him what a “move on back” is.
On a recent bus ride to Home Depot, there was a driver shift change two stops after I hopped on. I was sitting at the front of the bus, and Eddie entered the bus whistling and was all smiles. He looked at me and said “TGIF” as he opened the storage box right next to me to stow his lunchbox and jacket.
“This is my office,” Eddie said with a grin.
“Your mobile office,” I replied.
“Yes, but no Wi-Fi!” he said laughing.
So far, I’m must be riding on happy busses, because on my way back from Home Depot, I stepped on the bus as the driver and a passenger were talking about the Seattle Mariners, and they were wondering when opening day was. Being a baseball fan, I chimed in “April 6 against the Angels.” And for the next 10 minutes, we talked Mariners baseball, and the conversation flowed from steroids, the good ol’ days with a “clean” Ken Griffey Jr., how close the M’s came to the postseason last year and how important it is to make the playoffs in 2015.
It had been a while since I talked baseball with hardcore fans. I almost stayed on a few more stops to continue the conversation. Almost.