Author’s Note: I am a stay at home mother who happens to hold a part time job. That job is bus driving. I drive an elementary route and a junior high route. As you can probably imagine, some amazing and funny events have transpired over the last few years one of which I’ve written below. Names have been changed to protect…well, basically, to protect me and my job.
MISCELLANEOUS WEIRD STUFF
One Dog Day Afternoon
One sunny, hot spring day I pulled up to a bus stop and let off a few elementary children. They ran towards their home and I closed my doors ready to move on when a medium sized dog, tongue hanging, came loping down the sidewalk. Apparently, he had a happy doggy thought and he trotted up to the door of the bus and then crawled UNDER the bus and laid down smack in the middle between the two front tires. I waited. I honked. I waited some more. Since I still had kids on board, I wasn’t allowed to get off the bus though I did turn it off for a moment and stand at the bottom of the steps to examine the situation. I certainly couldn’t ask an elementary child to exit the bus and call a strange dog. And I didn’t think it appropriate to run over the dumb canine. Talk about scarring kids for life. The radio wasn’t an option. No way was I calling transportation on the radio that broadcasts all over the school district that I was stuck at a stop because a dog was taking a shady nap and wouldn’t move.
Finally, one of the kids who’d just run home came back outside. He inquired why I was still at the bus stop and I explained that there was a dog under the bus. “Oh,” he said gazing under the bus from the sidewalk, “I know whose dog that is. I’ll go get him.” Ten loonnng minutes later a teenager came ambling down the street, crawled under the bus and pulled out his mutt. He smiled, waved and went on his merry way with his rested nutso pal. I proceeded on my route with my hot, sweaty kids and we all lived happily ever after.
He was a big guy, perhaps early 50’s, tall in stature, big in belly, not tan, not hairy. For one whole school year, whenever the weather permitted and sometimes when it really didn’t, the Speedo Man teetered on flashing me. Almost every day in the morning and occasionally afternoons the wannabe flasher in his teensy, weensy, itty, bitty, (are you getting a picture here?) brightly colored Speedo would stand tall in his front yard hose in front of him “watering” his lawn. Since I had a bus stop a few houses before his house with its tiny patch of front lawn and another stop a few houses after, the bus traveled by at a slow speed. I knew the message was for me and not the kids because he always looked directly at me as I passed - to see if I was acknowledging his gloriousness, I suppose.
For the first few weeks, I admit to shock and a covert glance to note whether he was covered in the front. Then it became funny, and finally, boring. However, the thrill never dimmed for him because he consistently watered his little patch of grass in his skimpy Speedo for the entire year. Just a thrill a minute where I live.
Just a Little Hmm
My route travels down country roads so I drop many of my kids at their driveways. I had finished my junior high run except for the last two students. Jeffrey lives at the end of a dirt road and his mother had pulled into their drive just ahead of us. She climbed out of her pick up as Jeffrey exited the bus. We did the usual obligatory bus driver to parent, parent to bus driver wave. Mother and son met on the driveway and began talking while I drove a few feet forward to the small driveway in which I turn around. As I drove by on my way back to the main road I saw Mom scoop up Jeffrey, backpack and all, cuddle him like a baby and carry him towards their house. This 7th grade boy (not a football player but not small either) with his heavy backpack, nestled happily in his mother’s arms. Mom, who appeared hefty but not pro wrestler big, carried him inside.
Now I’m not commenting on the right or wrong of how affection should be displayed in a family, but this definitely qualifies as the oddest exhibit I’ve ever witnessed.
Daylight Savings Time
I know a secret. It’s the secret of why we endure Daylight Savings Time. We have Daylight Savings Time to ensure that bus drivers will spend the maximum amount of days driving their morning runs in the pitch dark. It’s a cruel joke perpetrated by school administrators.
Want to read more of Kathy's Work?
What Kids Do On The Bus
The Day the Naked Lady Answered the Door
Elvis in Texas
The Air Ukelele Band
Bad Word Therapy
On the Soap Box
Click the Bus