Sunday, October 7, 2018

Smoothly Rolling Into A Brief Absence

Man, I truly love my Friday work. It's not really  Friday, but it's mine. This route is a blissful respite from the weekly toil. After roughly 6,500 depressions of the brake pedal, my roll is easy on the sooty foot and soul.

Portland is truly a majestic city. Its rolling hills and meandering rivers, heart-stopping vistas and fascinating residents have mesmerized me for nearly two decades. Whenever I slip into a bad mood, one of you make me smile or laugh. If one motorist pisses me off, another amazes me with kindness. There's a balance here that makes life roll off my shoulders into my soul.

After years of dealing with management blunders, I've learned to forget them when I'm "out there" rolling my big ol' wheels. It's just me and the hum of the road, passengers quietly reading their screens, and a big picture window to view.

Music roars silently in my mind, the steering wheel slides from my touch into a smoothly-rolled turn. Suddenly there's something new to marvel upon not there three hours prior. I'm beating a rhythm with my feet and hands as I accelerate into the fall colors which give way to green grass and cloudy panoramas. It's like a wakeful dream. Passengers board and I greet them without seeing their pain. My smile sends peace, my soul ignores the rude. It's just a job, but one I love.

Music to the soul: a wheelchair-using passenger gave me a cherished compliment the other day. "You are one of the smoothest drivers I've had the pleasure of riding with," he said before rolling off the ramp. His sincerity astounded me, and it felt oh so good.

Stunned, I offered a belated reply: "Thank you! My boss would LOVE to hear you say that. I certainly did! Thanks for riding, sir."

An ADA commendation would be nice, since I always work hard to give folks a ride as smooth as my first girlfriend. Unfortunately, I haven't ever had one. That's okay though. His cherished words made up for the thousands of smooth rolls I provide each week without verbal kudos.

I'm taking leave of this blog for a few weeks now. At risk of betraying my identity, I embark upon a blissful week of vacation. Since this literary exercise deals with transit, it only makes sense I leave it behind with the grind. Time to relax with friends, look back and into the future while resting the joints made sore by unforgiving bus operator seats. Sip a bit o'whiskey, leave my Portland behind and stride forward into my past. I'll be back, perhaps with a few surprises in my literary knapsack.

Meanwhile, please visit Amazon and buy JUST DRIVE - Life in the Bus Lane if you haven't already. I put my heart and soul into that book, and everyone who has read it insists a great read awaits you. If not, thanks; at least you read this.

Safe travels wherever you meander, my dear readers. Until these fingers return my words to you, have a nice week or else I'll record a bus fart for my next post.

Later, ya lug nuts.

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