Sunday, 22 November 2015

What next? a red carpet!

Not too sure what the thinking was behind the appearance of theses fancy rope barriers (one at each end of the bus station where my bus arrives and departs) they don't aid the flow of passengers rather they hinder them.

So I do wonder when the red carpet is going to show up 

Rope barrier

Friday, 20 November 2015

The dark puddle

The big puddle that forms when it rains takes on a whole new character in the dark.

The dark puddle

Saturday, 7 November 2015

Inconsiderate parking

I would guess we have all seen it, cars parked on opposite sides of the road turning it into a chicane just say passable by one car.  Which person made the poor choice is hard to tell unless you saw who was the last to park.

This is an annoyance to most  drivers as they squeeze through and go on their way.

Now park the cars on a bus route, oddly a bus is a bit wider than a car, the squeeze through space is not squeezable at all.

So picture my bus home (1st buss in that direction, double decker) turning off the roundabout to pull into the main street (of an old town so it is not wide) to discover two vehicles perfectly parked to prevent the bus from passing.  Now as I may have mentioned before the buses on this route run at one every ten minutes, that is quite tight, and of course they run both ways, so there is another bus coming from the opposite direction too.  The town is a transit point for several routes so it is rather busy with buses.

One of the inconsiderately parked vehicles is a little van, back doors open a man is loading goods from a shop on the opposite side of the street.   The van belongs to the shop, the driver sees the buses predicament and ignores it, bus driver tries a beep of the horn and gets a rude gesture in return.  Now I don't drive but I can see that if the van was moved forward it would allow the bus the space to completed the turn and pass however that would give Mr Van Man a bit further to carry the no joy there.

The other vehicle is a large car parked outside a fish and chip shop, I think a passer by points out the driver is in the chip shop. Bus driver leaves the bus goes to the shop to ask the car be moved.  On his return he with some frustration advises the passengers the car driver is waiting for a bag of chips and won't move.

The traffic building behind the bus I am on is now blocking the round about, the bus coming in the other direction and has had to stop (as we are a big red double decker and so is he, he spotted the blockage soon enough to stop when he won't block forward passage) however, that bus now blocks the egress for Mr Van driver who having unhurriedly filled his van and slowly and smugly closed the doors now finds he can't go as oh dear there is a bus in the way. Now he too must wait as do we all, passengers and drivers as the jam spreads both ways, for  Mr Chip Man to get his bag of chips.

He , having got his chips, saunters out apparently revelling in the chaos he has contributed to gets into his car as starts to pull away, not that he gets too far either as he needs to pull onto the round about which is yes you guessed it blocked by the traffic stuck behind the bus.

Fortunately for all the space he does make by moving just a couple of feet is enough for our driver to squeeze round and past and gradually traffic starts to move.

The inconsiderate parking has cost  lots of people time, generated a lot of frustration in drivers passengers , people waiting at bus stops... a moment of thought could have avoided it all.

Monday, 19 October 2015

The other way update

Striding along is being alternated with serious jogging, I believe the bus company had lost her custom to a fitness drive.  Good for her.

Saturday, 29 August 2015

Farewell BIG yellow buses

they have driven off in to the bus afterlife..well been sold on to their next incarnation is probably more accurate.

Replaced by smaller buses named after that less easily described colour from the rainbow, the buses themselves are a sort of pinky purple.

Smelling of "new" they have leather seats and a floor suggestive of wooden laminate. They have blue LED light just above floor level on the outer seats.  not so happy about those they make my eyes ache.

I miss the yellow bus it was easier to see, some of my fellow passengers (pre advertising of the change not withstanding) have missed the new ones in surprise at the change of colour and shape of the bus.

I think I would have preferred they keep the old colour.

Wednesday, 12 August 2015

Taking turns.

Last week the escalator had had quite enough and the up and down both stopped working simultaneously.

That left the lift on my entry side of the bus station and stairs at the other.  That had to be factored in the time allotment for work to bus.  The lift being kept quite busy.

It took a few days for the escalators to be fixed and just as they were the lift, much put upon by all the extra usage decided it was deserving of a rest and broke down.

Today, lift and escalators working I approached the opposite end of the station as that is where my bus leaves to be greeted with this sight.


Yes the stairs were now "not working" well closed for maintenance, it struck me as funny .

Tuesday, 7 July 2015

Three at once...

it is an old joke about the regularity of buses.

My journey home and as I crossed the bridge I could see the top of the red bus and thought, with the bridge, escalator and the length of the bus station to navigate  I had missed that one.

With a certain level of acceptance I go forward another step or so and realise I can see two red double deckers at the stop, now that is a bit more annoying, the prospect of mussing two of them simultaneously!

Without much anticipation of being successful, I quicken my pace and see a third red double decker approaching.  At first I assume it is the bus going in my morning direction and homeward bound, however it pulls past that stop and makes the turn towards my departure stop.  Three, I refuse to miss three, spurred by that thought I speed up again.

To my surprise I get to the stop and the first two buses were still there and within moments there are three.  Oh decisions, decisions which one do I get on, given past experience it is likely that there will be decanting into just one bus at some point.  With a shrug I get on this first bus.

Off we go, oh this bus sounds like it has a cold, the engine coughs and splutters but I am at least moving.

Between point of departure and the littering incident stop the three frog leap each other at the various stops, first there picking up passengers, those behind only stopping if someone wants to alight.  I am, route speaking on bus two at this point.  We pull in behind, as far as I can see one red and two purple buses.  However as we pull away I can see the black bus was there..right which stop to get off now and make the change, best not to wait till one of my normal spots as the frog leaping is likely to continue.

I get to a stop and off I get, red bus three approaches with the black bus only a car behind.  I worry red bus will think I want it if I raise my arm and then black will pull past an I will miss it. I catch red drivers eye shake my head and point past, he nods, sorted.

Or perhaps not black driver is taking the pause in the traffic for a stretch he is not looking my way, the traffic moves the bus moves and I do a little jump and a wave, no indicator flashes bus keeps moving has my gamble failed?

Ah, a flicker of orange, the indicator flashes and at the last moment the bus stops, door swoosh open and I am jubilant!

"Sorry says the driver, I don't know where I was must have been somewhere nice" hay a double win as normally the drivers make it my fault they did not see me straight off.

I settle into my seat feeling smug.   

Wednesday, 8 April 2015

Out of the cocoon...

into a surreal world

I have not been on the bus for over four weeks due to a medical emergency in the family. Actually other than to hospital and back I have not been out of the house much at all.

So going back to work and back on the bus morning was odd.  Whilst I was absent from my normal life the sun has started to come up early in the morning and the rest of the world has kept turning.

Out of the door into the sunshine morning and the traffic is light, it being just after the bank holiday ,crisp clear air and I feel somewhat unreal.

Past the building site and the number of finished houses and the ones just getting started has increased greatly.

Where crocus flowers had just been making themselves known they are gone and daffodils are nodding at me.

However, the biggest surprise of all greets me at the bus station..seats, new seats, lots of shiney new seats.  Every other set with its own bin attached all torch looking.  Wow when did that happen, judging by the floor and the lingering sand not too long.

No one sat on them!

Second day and they are still there so I sit and discover they are made for tall people, my feet dangle which generates an edge of disappointment.

Thursday, 5 March 2015


Today bus number two was not always a bus.

As little pink commuter got on board it magically morphed into a sled speeding across the snow, that lasted for a couple of stops before the change began again.

Whilst Hedwig's theme did not actually play I could almost hear it as for a few brief moments sled became steam train before hunkering down low and dark into a vehicle you might loosely describe as a car.

No I have not started to hallucinate due to sleep deprivation although perhaps I am getting a bit fanciful.  

Today, of course, is world book day and as schools participate children take their favourite book  into school and dress up as their favourite character. 

Little Miss Pink was forgoing her normal hue today, exchanging it for the ice blue of Frozen's Elsa. Matilda/Madeline , obviously unaware of her true alter egos, was sporting a cape, wand and Harry Potter glasses.  Little brother also had a cape and with the addition of a moulded mask was Bruce Wayne's alter ego Batman.

So sled, Hogwarts Express or the Batmobile what were we travelling on?

Perhaps given I snooze away my journey, perhaps it was a bus after all..the Knight bus. 

Tuesday, 17 February 2015

Utterly disapointed

as it was just paint on the ceiling.  As I have never been mad enough to lie on the floor of the bus station that is one aspect of the building I had not examined in much detail and was little concerned with.

So still no seats.

Thursday, 12 February 2015

A drop of paint

on the ceiling.  White paint was being applied when I went past the bus station on the way home.  My hopes for seating being somewhat deflated by this more mundane redecorating sight. 

Tuesday, 10 February 2015

A sign with high hopes

This sign has appeared in the bus stop.  

Now I wonder just what it will mean.  After all what is there to redecorate?  The walls are bare brick, the floor concrete slabs the doors and windows white PVC and the lights are strip lights.

Are we going to get  boldly patterned wallpaper, plush carpets carpets, curtains for the windows. OK, I guess that is just me being silly but maybe, possibly, dare I hope for seating?  Now I am not holding out for a leather couch (there was one briefly at the halfway bus stop once upon a time) not even something padded.  I will be quite happy with cold and metal, to be honest some padding on the windowsill would be acceptable.

So mental finger crossed I wait, trying not to over anticipate and be disappointed but at the same time yearning for seats. Week after next it should, whatever it is, be all finished and shared right here.

Tuesday, 20 January 2015

A silent Whoopeee

A day of snow, a day of cold and the spectre of a most chilly journey home.  I leave work a tad off schedule with the glum thought I have missed the red bus which links nicely with the yellow that takes me home.  I get to the bridge which overlooks the bus station and leads to the escalator.  My heart sinks a little further, I can see the bus is already pulled to the stop, I have to cross the bridge, go down the escalator and the full length of the bus station.  Whilst I had not anticipated catching this bus, seeing it and missing frustration grows.  

Now on occasion a hopeful attempt to run might be in order, but with snow underfoot and sleet descending it is not safe on either the bridge surface of the tile of the bus station.  So I carry on at a steady place with an Eeyore "figures" towards the stop.  As I get closer and the bus is still there, as I can see the length of the queue waiting to board, I quicken my pace, Piglet hopeful.  As I get on the bus I have a contented air which even having to go up to the top deck does not dim.  I settle down to read.

The snow continues to fall and the pace of the bus is diminished in places by the road conditions and the flow of traffic.  Judging when we will reach the transfer point is not possible  until four or five stops before my normal point of disembarking from this bus.  A glance at my watch and I realise the yellow bus will have been and gone, it is normally very on schedule, and the next bus, due in then next few minutes will likely be on time as I am late, or will be very late (it is not a set your watch by time keeper) so my feeling are a bit Rabbit here, pragmatic and practical, and I am in a better place than I may well have been.

At this point I glance out of the window, now it may have been the sway of the bus as we overtook a vehicle and passed it that made me look.  The vehicle we had just passed, the yellow bus, the weather making it run unusually late.  Had I been on the lower deck, with less movement, obscured windows I might not have noticed it. Will we get enough ahead for me to alight from this bus and catch the eye of the driver behind ? 

Down the stairs I go, someone has pushed the bell for the next stop, if I don't get off and try here to make the change the yellow bus is sure to leap frog in front and the chance will be missed.  However, if I chance it and fail, I will have a couple of stops walk in the snow to get the next onward option.   

Off I get, red bus pulls away, yellow is right behind it, I signal, hopeful arm outstretched, he has not seen me, the bus passes, my mood teeters back to that famous donkey.  But wait, the bus is indicating, pulling in just a little past the stop, several quick steps and I am at the doors opening to let me on. 

As I walk calmly to my seat, sit, and settle down for the last bus journey of the day, inside Tigger is bouncing with glee, hands over head in triumph .

  "I got the bus, whoopee! I made the right choice, I win this time". 

 Telling my friend today I am amused at my own reaction, entwined with that amusement lingers a gleeful sense of achievement.