31 October 2008


Caught the 7:57AM 81N today and what a great surprise when boarding. The driver wished me happy halloween and told me to grab some candy from a bag perched on the front window ledge. So unexpected -- totally appropriate for halloween.

The dean's office scheduled a halloween potluck for today, so I made my usual deviled eggs - not the easiest item to publicly transport to work. Because of the egg balancing act, I opted not to wear my costume (nose and glasses) so the driver didn't know how much I really appreciated his halloween commemorative.

Here's a link to a great Pumpkin Carving Simulator

A sincerely spirited halloween to all!

29 October 2008


For reasons unknown, I stayed undercover too long this morning so I only walked as far as the 81N stop at Guadalupe and McClintock. It turned out well as we got one of the new, tube-like 6600 buses. I boarded and quickly realized I almost owned the bus - the third rider on, only two fellow passengers! Sat down and retrieved my camera for the rare opportunity to photograph a long row of empty seats. Turned out OK.

The seats didn't stay empty for long - two quick stops passed before other riders joined up. Morning riders on the 81N consist mostly of sleep-deprived students who nap or study while riding. Not too exciting, but then what do I bring to the party? Preferring the role of "l'observateur", I certainly don't initiate conversations. Oh well, who needs excitement in the morning?

23 October 2008


Well it took a ride home on the 66 to bring some fun back to bus riding. Caught the 4:50PM 66 southound at the corner of Stadium Drive and College Ave. The 4PM to 6PM 81 southbound buses all run very late (sometimes not at all), so if I leave work in that time window, the 66 provides a more reliable alternative.

I got on the bus and waited as the driver's switched out. The new driver announced he was new to this route and asked us to please be patient. For the most part, he did a great job -- only a couple of near misses when people wanted off at the more obscure stops.

By midway down Rural, I remained the only passenger. We neared the Guadalupe-Rural intersection and instead of getting into the left turn lane, he kept the bus in the right turn lane. Fortunately, the light turned red and we stopped. I moved to the very front of the bus, saw him looking left and right and he said, "I think I turn here . . ." I told him he did indeed need to turn, but left, not right. He looked down at a map and concurred. Once the light turned green, he moved forward and waited in the intersection until he could safely proceed south.

We discussed doing a cloverleaf in the shopping center parking lot, but he said it was too crowded for a safe detour. He continued south on Rural and took a left at the first residential street. He told me not to worry or panic, he was just getting us back to Guadalupe. I told him I wasn't worried at all - I enjoy a great adventure. Poor guy couldn't know my true delight at this unexpected "food" for the blog. We curled around in the neighborhood and finally found a cross street that joined Guadalupe. He asked me about the next right turn and I told him only left turns until he made it back to Guadalupe and then he could turn right.

I got off at my stop and wished him well on the rest of the route. What a fun ride home!

15 October 2008

72N - 6100 something

Trekked to Rural and Guadalupe today and caught the 72N, 8am version. I could see a crowd on the bus and thought about waiting 5-10 minutes for the 66 northbound. Unknown forces propelled me onto the 72 and I got a front row seat! Knitting currently occupies my busy-hands obsession, so I whipped out my bus project and, needles clacking, enjoyed the ride.

Nearly SRO when I boarded, the bus got more crowded as the ride continued. Just after crossing Baseline, a wheelchair added to the mix -- Sardine City! I like that the bus gets so full. Not sure if the crowded buses reflect ASU's ongoing parking space reduction efforts or higher fuel costs - whatever, nice to see all the could-be-drivers riding instead. Gasoline prices are down, probably so the elephants look good before the election.

Took a picture of the Guadalupe/Rural stop - note the shopping carts piled behind the shelter - I really do think some interesting research might be done on the migratory habits of the American shopping cart.

14 October 2008

Back on the bus blog

No posts since August - bad blogger. The semester started, work got crazy busy - no time for writing and once home, who wants to look at a computer screen some more?!? Just this week things seem more settled and bus blogging returns to my radar.

In a feeble attempt to add some daily exercise, I now try to walk and pick up either the 72 or 66 bus at Guadalupe and Rural. A mile from home, it takes about 20 minutes to get to the stop - time depends on shoes and weather. If I don't muster the energy in the morning, then I ride the 72 in the afternoon and walk home from the same intersection. I could take the 66 in the afternoon and accomplish the same thing; however, the route goes within 1 block of home and I find it difficult to get get off the bus before necessary. Possessing a serious OCD need for direct path travel, my brain just won't accept early disembarkation without cause - I know, I know, walking constitutes cause, but my brain won't go there yet. Stay tuned, the walk might overcome the obsession.