Is there some sort of bus club that I am unaware of? Do people who don't regularly take the bus have a certain look about them that daily riders are immediately privy to? I have a car and a bike so my transportation is usually spoken for. This means a few things:
I do not have a bus pass that allows me immediate and hassle free boarding.
I am not immediately aware of how the bike loading contraption on the front of the bus works, though I will eventually figure it out.
When I do take the bus, it is usually because I am going to the airport and therefore have an obnoxious amount of stuff with me.
These three things are a general equation for other more seasoned riders to become quickly irritated with me.
I had to bike to the bus stop one morning to then catch the bus to catch the light rail to get to the airport. Unbeknownst to be, there are stops almost every 100 feet on the road I was going. I had my bike, a very large body bag equaling no wheels, and a big backpack. Standing at what I thought to be the bus stop I noticed a group about a block away. Thinking that I was surely at the wrong stop I left my bags, mounted my bike and sprint-cycled to the cluster awaiting the bus. “Is this the bus stop??” I asked embarrassingly out of breath. “Yea...” I dropped my bike this time and sprinted on foot to fetch the body bag and hobble to other stop as others watched with smirks painted on their faces. Once there with all my things I noticed a gentleman at the previous stop I was waiting. The bus stopped to let him on and I stood speechless and annoyed with my fellow bus goers that they did not let me in on the fact that there is more than once stop on the same street.
As the bus slowed to let us on I left my baggage on the sidewalk and began to examine the contraption that was meant to hold my bike on the front bumper of the bus. The driver was not about to offer assistance but, instead, slouched in his seat and waited for me to figure it out rather than expedite the process by offering some advice. I tried pulling on things and pushing levers but nothing worked. He began to make nonsensical hand gestures through the front windshield that I was assumed to understand. Finally, because I guess I was throwing off his schedule , he came out and reached behind a metal bar and slammed down the tray then threw my bike on. I then wrestled my baggage on and fiddled to make change in my backpack all while the entire bus stared, burning a hole right through my forehead. I immediately felt like I was in middle school again, uncool and not part of the cool bus riding crowd.
Once paid for I scanned for a seat as the bus lurched forward causing me to trip over the body bag and catch myself against a pole. I decided that would due just fine. I shoved my body bag as far off to the side as I could. Every time we stopped a new person felt the need to catch my eyes and stare me down as they passed me, annoyed of the extra side step they had to take to evade my bag.
I was under the assumption that public transportation was regarded as an admirable way to travel. The green way, the earth conscious way, etc. It takes an hour to travel somewhere that would normally take fifteen minutes so why the anger for my extra two minutes of confusion?