Wednesday, December 3, 2008

And now we resume your regularly scheduled programming.

I might have mentioned that the TTA was changing things around. They moved the Transfer Center and had to redo the bus routes and schedules. They also changed drivers. I'll write more about that later. My first bus is still the 105, but I catch it about 10 minutes later in the morning. I figured I might not see the same people. To be honest here, I was worried I wasn't going to see Amy Number One anymore. Aside from being good blog fodder, she's grown on me. I like Amy. I miss her when she's not on the bus. Luckily, she's there. We have a new driver whom I suspect got her bus driver training in the public school system. She shouts at people to sit down white the bus is moving. She's driving a new bus, with eight hand loops in the front so you have something to hold onto if you have to stand. I don't know what she's going to do when the bus is full.

I think I hate this woman already and it's only day two. This morning, she pulled into the transfer center and stopped short of the platform to let the dispatcher get on and direct her where to go. A bunch of people started to stand up and get ready to leave, including Amy. The dispatcher was standing in the door and wouldn't let her out. The driver is yelling that nobody is going anywhere and we all need to sit down. Amy is in the front of the bus, obviously agitated. I can imaging that she knew she was supposed to get off the bus but was confused as to why she wasn't allowed to get off. The driver raises her voice at her and says, "you need to sit down, ma'am," with all the head shaking diva attitude you'd expect to see on the Mo Po Show. Amy looked like she was going to cry, and she's saying, "where do I go? Why can't I get off?" I called to her and said "Amy, it's okay, come sit down," which she did and when she was sitting in the seat in front of me again, I told her the driver needed to pull up to the curb before we could get off. She calmed down a little. When the driver finally stopped and let us off, she said "good bye, Amy. Have a nice day" as Amy was getting off the bus.

This upset me on so many levels. I sincerely hope she does not ever talk to Amy like that again. Amy obviously has some sort of developmental delay. She can get around on the bus by herself, but she doesn't recognize that the driver needs to pull up to the curb. She just knows she where she needs to be to get on her second bus. There is no need to talk to her like a 4 year old, but there is also no need to raise your voice to her or speak harshly to her. She doesn't understand and she was obviously upset. The fact that she's treating us like a bunch of middle schoolers, is also ridiculous. If her driving is so crazy that we'll get hurt if we stand up while the bus is in motion, then perhaps she should consider a career change.

(Add number 21 to yesterday's list. I am a fiercely loyal friend and will stick up for the little guy if that little guy doesn't have a voice of their own.)

I think you all may have rightfully inferred by now that I was that weird kid in your elementary school class. Not the weird paste-eating kid, but the weird kid who had imaginary cats and wore funky clothes.

(Add number 22. I didn't have an imaginary friend. I had two imaginary cats, Chuck and JoAnn, who had twenty-two imaginary kittens. I would yell at people if they were about to sit on them. Seriously.)

I was also the only one who was friends with Jane in elementary school. Jane lived a couple blocks up the street and was in my class. I think we might have walked to school together. Jane had Downs Syndrome. The kids in our class would tell her to lift her dress up and show off her underpants, which she did happily since she didn't know any better. The kiss of death for me was when I became her sworn defender. Meh. I didn't care. They all hated me (and Chuck and JoAnn) anyway, and Jane was cool. I remember being invited to her birthday party. My mom crocheted her a clown puppet for her gift. I was the only one at the party who didn't have some sort of developmental delay. I remember the party was a lot of fun. I'd like to think that Amy is somebody's Jane and that someone out there has Jane's back now. If this woman is anything other than sugar, spice and unicorns to Amy again, I'm going to the Triangle Transit Board of Trustees.


Kristina P. said...

Oh, that's so sad! I'm glad that Amy has someone like you there.

Anonymous said...

You are just too sweet. Good on you for sticking up for Amy!

Maybe the new bus driver will calm down once she has got a bit more driving experience under her belt?

FoxyMoron said...

Some folk just shouldn't work with people. Good on you for sticking up for Amy and taking care of her.