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

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Second Saturday on the bus

Today was National Train Day and Second Saturday, the perfect storm for things to do in downtown Sacramento. Unfortunately, I completely forgot that the train festivities only ran until 2 p.m. The wife and I didn't board the No. 82 bus for downtown until 1:30. By the time we arrived on light rail at the Amtrak Station there was no sign of National Train Day.

So we were too late for National Train Day and early for the Second Saturday festivities, which run from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Nevertheless, we wandered around and the wife found all together too many excuses to buy things. By the time we headed out of town on the No. 30 bus heading for Sac State we had two full bags of stuff.

We had an interesting experience on that ride to Sac State. The No. 30 was running late, and I asked the driver if he expected to get to Sac State by 8:18, when the No. 82 was scheduled to depart.

"Not a chance," he said. And then he picked up his radio and called dispatch and asked to have the No. 82 wait for us. I've heard drivers do this before, but I've never requested it myself.

After checking with dispatch, the driver let us know the No. 82 would wait for us. We were very happy with that news. If we missed the connection, we would be sitting at Sac Sate for an hour until the next No. 82.

As it turned out, the driver was able catch up with his schedule enough to get us to Sac State before the No. 82.

Here are some pictures from the day:

We've come to consider the No. 82 as our personal bus, taking us from our front door to points across the great suburban wasteland of unincorporated Sacramento.

The wife waiting for the train.

You know you are old when you go into a "vintage" store and keep saying, "I remember that . . ."

I was fascinated by the wedding party I saw walking across L Street to take pictures on the Capitol steps.


Once we reached Midtown, we ran into a parade with floats . . .

And marchers . . .

And mayoral candidates . . .

And even group of drummers from Sacramento High

The wife and I are going to do this again. The weekend bus schedule requires that we leave before 8:30, but that still leaves lots of time to see some art, hear some music and have dinner. And, of course, the ride down and back on RT is "free," courtesy of our monthly passes. Not a bad deal.

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