Travel

A Review of Bus Travel: Insights from Pilar Garces

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By parm maan

Since the city's public transport is free, traveling on an always-crowded bus has become a strange exercise in patience and endurance of more sophisticated forms of rudeness. You need to know how to avoid some passengers and deal with others. Only the best make it to their stop unscathed.

– Sit when you can. You'll find them fitting into an aisle seat and blocking the entrance with half a dozen packages by the window. Don't ask if you can pass, only confident people win. Rather, say “I will pass” and wait. Some will remove their stuff very slowly to see if you get tired or down next time. Others will laboriously wade through the grunt and tell you they'll get right down. Don't believe them. Look them straight in the eye and as soon as the gap opens, slip through it, thanking you very loudly and declaring “I don't want to step in, but…”.

– Sit in seats occupied by bags, even if others are free. Don't join the empire of stragglers who think their backpack has more rights than anyone else. You will certainly find them focused on their cell phones and wearing large helmets to avoid eye contact. Don't ask if you can sit down, say “I'm going to sit down” and imagine. A sixth sense will alert them that their belonging is in danger of being crushed and they will remove it before it hits your ass. Don't suffer when they put on their worst face of disgust, you don't know them and you don't want to know them.

– Lift children out of seats (wanted or not), even if they are not your children. Intervene if you see an elderly person carrying groceries or a child, tripping on crutches, a pregnant woman or someone else vulnerable. Call him in a friendly voice and direct him to a seat occupied by children or teenagers who are pretending not to notice, and once there, be flexible and tell him in a very loud voice. ”

– Shamelessly look at the cell phone of the person next to you who is watching TikTok without headphones and at full volume, or talk to their cousin without worrying about holding the cell phone to their ear. And comment on how clean that bathroom is after using the vinegar and baking soda. Give your opinion about what happened to your interlocutor with his boss, who is a jerk. If it bothers you that you're intruding on other people's conversations, hide behind your commitment as an audience and talk about the noise pollution we're exposed to.

– Elbows, those big forgotten ones. Take them out more. You'll need them to protect your personal space from those who prefer not to maintain stability, and from those who want to take away the space you've earned with blood, sweat, and tears. Also to get to the exit doors on time.

– Attitude towards you is an infallible weapon. Use it to firmly ask the guy sitting next to you who is encroaching on your seat, or the guy who put his sneakers on the chair in front of you, to close his legs. It is an effective solution for those groups that remain planted in front of the bus and do not allow the crowd from the front to pass. After a heavy blow to the face of another passenger waiting in line, he pays tribute.

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