Wednesday, September 16, 2015

An Introverts Guide to Riding The Bus

Nate's car has been acting up lately. Actually, it has been acting up for a while with a stubborn engine error that refuses to be fixed and making it impossible to pass the smog test. Or something like that. I don't know much about cars. You will have to ask him. Anyway, for the past three weeks, Nate and I have been sharing a car; meaning that he's been driving my car to his job while I have been taking the bus.

Outside of my trip to Europe, I've only ridden on public transportation once so, being of the "I prefer to keep to myself" type, I was initially nervous to ride by myself on a bus full of strangers. But I've now grown used to it and, the possibility of having to make conversation aside, I actually enjoy my time riding to and from places.

With my reticence in mind, I put together a few tips to help those who might relate or to provide a good time for anyone who wants to laugh at my awkwardness. Enjoy.

1. Avoid making eye contact with anyone.
If your eyes connect with someone, they might assume that you are interested in conversation which, we all know, is not likely. The best way to go about doing this is to bring a book with you to read. If you project the appearance of being totally engrossed in your reading material your chances of being interrupted decrease. Ideally, the cover will be boring and non-intriguing to avoid any unwanted questions from curious folk like the dreaded, "What are you reading?" Also, wearing sunglasses is another great tactic. If they can't see your eyes, they won't know you were looking.

2. Sit near the front.
I've noticed that most of my fellow bus riders gravitate towards the back so I love to slip into the first seat available. I always sit near a window, too. That way when you forget your book--like I did yesterday--you can just stare out at the view passing by, which was really amazing after the storm. Sometimes the bus will be pretty full when you get on, though, and you have no choice but to sit in the back. Don't freak out. Just breath. No one is staring at you. Just slip into your back row window seat as if nothing were wrong. One good thing about sitting in the back is that it's nearer to the exit, providing a seamless escape.

3. Realize that there's nothing to be nervous about.
Everyone else on the bus is just trying to go about their day, the same as you are. They too are not there for a conversation. You might encounter the occasional chatterbox but, luckily for you, they will provide most of the talking so there is no need to worry about pushing yourself too much. Also, if you're worried about murderers, don't be. In my three weeks of bus riding, I've yet to encounter one. There's been a lady cussing out the driver because she was late for work and the driver wouldn't let her out in the middle of the street, but other than that everybody is pretty normal. So sit back, relax, and enjoy the ride.

Nate's car was finally fixed yesterday! And he passed the smog test so he can now drive it legally and without worry. I guess that means my bus days are now over. I'm glad to have the ease of my own car back, but I think I will miss the bus if only a little bit. Riding it was like an adventure and I felt like a big-city kid. Now I'm actually thinking about purchasing a bike to ride to work and around town on. I've only looked at Electra bikes so far and I like this pretty yellow onethis fun orange one, or this cool red one. 

What do you guys think? Do you have any bike recommendations or any interesting public transportation experiences? Please share in the comments, I would love to hear them.


  1. Hahah I love this and I have used some of these tips in the past :)


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