Riding the bus with care

During the coming months, let’s all keep courtesy in mind when riding the bus.

Waiting for the bus is never fun, and when it’s cold out the task can seem especially daunting. The crowds can be large; the lines can be long. And no matter how many buses there are, they never seem to arrive fast enough. About the only thing to take comfort in is that we’re in this together. That’s why, during the coming winter months, we should all keep courtesy in mind.

There are a few small things that can make a difference. Please remember that the front rows of the bus are designated for elderly people and those with disabilities, so don’t hesitate to give up your seat if that’s where you sit. Also, if the person is vision-impaired, let them have the first seat next to the bus driver so they can hear each stop. With help, finding an open seat in close quarters will pose no challenge.

We can also practice courtesy before boarding the bus. As the weather gets colder, let those with disabilities board the bus first so they spend less time in the elements. This goes without saying, but at a crowded bus stop those in the front of the line may not always see those in back.

Also, if someone is barreling down the street chasing after a bus, let the driver know; they’ll often wait. Not only will it make that person’s day, but you’d hope someone does it for you. We all know what it’s like to have hard work go unrewarded.

While these are small acts, their value is considerable. One kind gesture will often provoke another, in the same way that holding the door for someone elicits a smile. It’s the way an elderly couple thanks you for giving up your pair of seats or the way total strangers can lament about the weather and share a laugh. This kind of communion, albeit small, can make our chaotic world seem a bit milder and a little more at peace. And that’s something we can all take part in, one bus ride at a time.