Monday, September 12, 2016

Public Transit

Hopped on the bus at 10:10 am so my ticket was good for a 90-minute tour.

I had to fly to Ottawa on Saturday to attend the memorial service for a dear family friend. When I arrived at the Ottawa airport, I decided to save myself 35 dollars in cab fare and instead take the bus downtown. I haven't been on public transit for almost 15 years, since I lived in Vancouver. I'm a supporter of public transit so I also felt it was the right choice since I had time.
I didn't occur to me to take a photo of my view from the No. 97 bus -- a distinctive shot  for the whole "country girl in the city" theme -- because I was worried I'd miss my stop. As it was, once they announced "Laurier", I got right up to stand by the door so the driver wouldn't miss my intention, and was far too early.
On the plus side of that, maintaining my balance while holding on was an excellent abdominal workout.
The bus dropped me off right downtown where I needed to be -- but not exactly where I needed to be in order to find the church. Being in cities doesn't bother me but my sense of direction does. It's rather a lack of sense of direction. I'll think I'm going in the right direction but all too often, I'm going the wrong way. Usually the opposite direction.
Street signs aren't always the easiest to locate, if they exist at all.
This time, I lucked out. I headed in the direction I thought I should be going, figured out I was two blocks south/east/north/west (er, still not sure) of the street I should have been on, got to see the Parliament buildings and walk over the Rideau Canal, jiggy-jogged through a park and just before I headed towards a church I could see , I noticed both the city hall and older people dressed in funeral clothes. I remembered directions in the obituary stating "Parking at city hall" so I simply turned to follow the folks, and saw the correct church -- not the one I saw in the opposite direction -- a block away.
Now that I live in the country where everyone drives their vehicle everywhere, even if where they're going is only a few minutes away, walking and riding the bus are two distinctive hallmarks of being in a city. It's so much easier than trying to drive and park! I miss the freedom of having the option of going car-free although I know that if I had to take the No. 97 every day, I'm sure I'd long for the stop-and-go quiet of my own car.

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