We Should All Be Bus Drivers
I decided this morning that the bus drivers are my favorite working citizens in the District. They good-naturedly wait for me when I, all but, sprint across the crosswalk to board the bus on time. They don't seem to hold it against me that I forget to buzz my card when I finally do make it on. Sometimes they actually pass me because it doesn't look like I'm planning to board the bus (usually because I'm shuffling through my wallet to find my metro card or sending one last snapchat) and I have to chase them down! Each time this happens, I expect them to show signs of exasperation because this clueless girl made them stop thirty yards past their stop, but strangely this has never been the case. If they have any reaction at all, it's usually a smile and a nod.
The best part about riding the bus is getting off. Not because I'm anxious to leave (although occasionally I do get a little carsick) but because when I say "thank you" as I step off, the bus driver replies, "Good bye, have a good day!" I've even had some who treat me like their granddaughter or niece, and say, "Alright, little lady, you take care now!" I don't think they realize how much better my day is because they simply wish me one. And they wish me one. Each person who steps off receives their very own, "Good bye, have a good day." Some of these people riding the bus might not have anyone else who cares about the quality of their day on a regular basis.
I want to be a bus driver to other people in life. I want to get people to where they need to go by faithfully and humbly performing my job. I want to be patient with people who need extra grace, even if it means stopping where I wasn't planning to stop. When I do make those unexpected pauses for others, I don't want to make a big deal out of it. I just want to smile, welcome the person on board, and continue doing my job. Most of all, when I express a hope or wish for another person's day, life, or situation, however minor, I want them to feel the way I feel when I step off the bus, smiling and walking with a spring in my step, thanks to my bus driver's kind valediction.
Anna Bret Allen is a member of First Presbyterian Church of Orlando. As a recent graduate of Wheaton College she is serving as a Falls Church Anglican Fellow outside Washington, D. C.
Thanks for Edgar for his photo on Unsplash