There is a certain happiness sighted when your bus comes along. It is of course a small specialized form of happiness and will never be a great thing.

-Richard Brautigan, The Old Bus

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Farm animals on light rail

In the novella Animal Farm, George Orwell famously explains, "All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others."

Seems this holds true at the 65th Street light rail station.

I arrived from midtown on the 6:19 outbound train. I walked over to the No. 82 bus stop and pulled out my book. I had almost 10 minutes to wait for the next scheduled departure. At least the weather was nice.

Eventually, the bus pulled into the transit center and made its way to the stop. When the bus doors opened a handful of people got off, and then the driver invited people to board. I showed my pass and took a seat.

As I returned to my book I heard the driver welcome a replacement driver. She then left the bus.

I looked up and noticed that the 6:33 inbound train was in the station. I then saw the bus driver crossing Q Street to catch the train. She didn't exactly fly. It was more an awkward lumbering. Jogging was obviously not something this driver did regularly.

Meanwhile, the light rail operator was finishing up boarding a handicapped rider. He was pulling up the ramp in preparation to close the door.

Just as the bus driver reached the train, the doors closed. She pressed the door button, but the door didn't open.

Well, I thought to myself, that seems fair. After all, that was exactly what happened in November to the two blind Sacramento State students I wrote about here. Trains wait for no one.

And then the door in the front of the train opened. The operator leaned out and waived to the bus driver and then went back inside. The door next to the bus driver then opened and she boarded the train.

"The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which."

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