More on the beauty of buses

Excerpts from an essay about the romance of the ride by a kindred, bus loving spirit:

A bus stop is stillness by which everything passes: the hurried steps of cell-phone gabbers, carts pushed by homeless men wearing dusty parkas in the summer, mounted policemen, snapshooting tourists. I firmly grip my MetroCard, ready to extend my arm out, because I sometimes get paranoid that drivers won’t see me and will keep on driving. My caution is needless. Once I step into this indeterminate zone, usually marked by a simple sign-topped pole, I’m not just another person with some fly-by business on the sidewalk. I’m a bus rider.

[...]

In the Victorian era, theatrical panoramas became a popular form of mass entertainment, the 3-D IMAX of its time. Novelty-seekers stepped onto specially built platforms to immerse themselves in scrolling views of far-away cities, some as long as 300 feet. Bus windows are live panoramas of my city. I’ve lived in New York for more than a decade, and I still think myself a tourist. When I feel too anchored, I sometimes catch a comet–I hop on an unfamiliar bus, knowing only its general heading, and if I get lost, I look for one on its way back to terra cognita. It doesn’t matter if I’m comet-riding or on a regular bus route I’ve taken hundreds of times, I’ll find a window seat and press my brow against the glass and watch the mad carnevale flow by.

(via: Raquel in San Antonio):

Oh, Pitchaya Sudbanthad, I would like to meet you.

This entry was posted in reasons to ride, transit culture and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.