Tree of Life

First, some bus driver talk:

We just had our semi-annual route picks. Every six months we pick new routes to give drivers a break from routine and an opportunity, if one exists, to get a better route. It’s based on seniority and I’m not at the top of the list, but the good news, this time I was able to get one of my choices.

For the past few years I’ve been stuck on a particular route. As routes go, it’s one of the least favorite because it requires a special type of driver. For me, it wasn’t all that bad because, let’s just say—when I need to be, I can be very special.

In a nutshell, you have to deal with many (this is to satisfy the PC police) residentially challenged passengers who ride for free so they frequently ride, and they expect concierge service. I’ve developed a few techniques I use to remind them that I work for the county, not Uber, and they can stick their concierge service where the sun don’t shine. It’s been successful. Although in their case, that place where the sun don’t shine frequently sees sunshine—moonshine too. Modesty (by necessity) is not one of their virtues.

Now for the tree:

The image below is just another example of why I needed a change. It’s the stump of what used to be a beautiful shade tree that I passed under nine times a day while driving my route. It was beginning to grow into the power lines directly above and rather than trim it, they cut it down. That was about five months ago and for me, it was sad. Why? Because, on what was normally a dismal drive, this particular spot with its large shade tree and four-way stop, was a brief yet peaceful respite. Entertaining too! You can’t imagine how outrageously funny people can be until you watch them try to figure out how to work a four-way stop.

So there I was driving my route and passing this dead stump day in and day out, when out of nowhere, the unimaginable happened, and it happened fast. One day there was a dried-out stump, the next, it was green with life. And it really cheered me up to see that with each passing day, there was new growth, greener and denser than before. To me, it represented real hope for the future.

Then, on my last day driving this Godforsaken route; a beautiful sunny day that followed three days of rain; I expected to see the tree, my tree, thriving with life and promise. Alas, I think the meme speaks for itself.

Au Revoir, Vaya Con Dios — Later Old Friend

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