So yesterday was the first day of school.
The twins are starting high school this year, and –having experienced the car line at the high school before– I have declared that they are going to be riding the bus.
(The high school campus houses a middle school also, and the traffic jams during pick-up and drop-off time are horrendous! On Boo’s first day of school there, four years ago, I thought I had allowed plenty of time to get there. Then I spent over twenty minutes waiting in the car line and Boo was actually late to school on the first day!)
But I digress. My point is, the twins are riding the bus to and from high school.
This means they have to be at the bus stop at 6:24 am every day, which means I have to get up before five in the morning, which is way too early, but whatever. I am making it happen.
It was still dark when we went out to catch the bus. It’s August. That means it’s only getting darker, as the sun will be rising later and later as time progresses. But hey, I’ve seen worse. I’ve lived in Alaska.
In the morning they got on the bus without incident. The bus driver handed me a form to fill out, introduced himself as Mr. B, and they were off.
In the afternoon I went outside to wait for the bus to come. Sitting on my front porch, I can see the corner where the bus will stop –it’s on a busy road where the neighborhood entrance is—but it’s across the yard and past some trees. So I can see the bus when it comes, but I can’t see when the kid gets off or whatever.
Okay, so yesterday I’m sitting out there and the bus stops at the corner, and then the bus drives away. I wait, but my child never shows up.
I was only expecting one of the twins, because Little Boy stayed after school for band practice. But Little Girl never appeared.
I walked over there and looked around, but she wasn’t there. Then she texted me saying that she was still on the bus.
Ok, I thought. So you’re trapped on the bus now?
I started walking down the street because I figured the next stop shouldn’t be that far away.
I went to get the car. Then my husband pulled up in his car, and I said, “Hey you wanna go on a mission to get a kid who is trapped on the bus?” He is always up for a mission, so he hopped in.
So there is a new thing I’ve never seen before: they have an app that tells me where the bus is. I had downloaded it earlier, thinking it would just give me bus updates, but it seems that there’s a literal GPS sitting on that bus telling me exactly where the bus is in real time. I’ve never seen this before; I’m pretty excited about it actually.
Technology= WOW, am I right?
I was like, well let’s just follow the bus on the app, and then once I catch up to it, she can get off. I handed the phone to my husband and said to look at the app and figure out where the bus is.
He was looking on there while I was driving. Then he said, “Okay I have it.” He directed me to a corner in a neighborhood near ours.
“Park right here,” he said. “Then the bus will be trapped down this circle, and when it comes by, we’ll get our kid.”
He was taking this “we’re on a mission” thing very seriously.
I said okay and stopped. I put on my emergency blinkers so people could go around me and waited. Then he said, “When I see the bus coming, I’m gonna get out and stand in the street and wave my arms.”
I said, “Really?”
He said that he figured it was gonna really embarrass her but then she’d figure out how to get off the bus at the right stop after this.
Talk about tough love!
SO. He saw the bus coming and stood in the street waving his arms.
Inside the bus driver was like, “What gives?” and tried to wave him away.
My husband went up to the window and said, “Hey my kid is on that bus, and I need it back.”
Then he explained that she didn’t get off at her stop, and the bus driver said he would take her back there.
“Nah,” said my husband, “just let her out right now and I’ll take her.”
So Little Girl got off the bus. You can imagine how incredibly embarrassing this was. She got in the car and said, “Mom. Dad stood in front of the bus. He stood in front of the bus!”
I told her how you’ve got to stand up when it’s your stop, and if he if he drives away without letting you off you yell, “Hey it’s my stop!” I don’t know why this kid doesn’t know bus etiquette. I guess because she only rode the bus in elementary school where they’re actually more careful about the kids, maybe she isn’t aware of how you’re supposed to act?
Anyways, it was the first day the driver didn’t know who was supposed to be getting on and off but…
I’ll bet he remembers this kid now.