The wheels on the bus

October 11, 2009 at 3:54 am 2 comments

go round and round.  When they work, that is. 

Riding home in the bus yesterday, I alternated between listening to my iPod, doing bits of schoolwork, overhearing conversation, and watching random pieces of the Spiderman movie on a tiny screen above my head.  (I’ve never seen anything Spiderman, but I still found it amusing to watch people in strange costumes smashing through things).  You know, the usual bus trip. 

Two hours into it, I started getting excited that we only had an hour to go.  I also started attempting to study for my psych exam, which is what I was supposed to be doing for the other two hours.  So I’m merrily reading my study guide, not paying much attention to it, when all of the sudden we’re bouncing along and then we’ve stopped.  Along the turnpike. 

“This can’t be good,” everyone says, and then turns to their neighbor in hopes they have x-ray vision or prediction powers.  “Do you know what’s going on?” 

No one did. 

We sit in the bus, quietly speculating, for about ten minutes, until I realize that the bus driver hasn’t bothered to tell us what’s going on because he’s actually outside of the bus.  Five minutes later he walks back on and about ten people ask, “Could you please tell us what’s going on?”

“The engine overheated.  We have to wait for them to send coolant.  If that doesn’t work, they’ll have to send another bus.” 

At this point, I was both calm and fine and felt like crying.  Who wants to wait another hour for the coolant (though I slipped and told Katie we were waiting for Kool-Aid), and then another two hours after they realize that hasn’t worked for a bus to be sent out from State College?  We were only an hour away. 

Fingers flew as people began texting or calling the news back to the people waiting for them.  “My plans are so ruined,” one girl wailed.  “So much for taking the early bus!”

And they turned Spiderman off.

And the air conditioning.

And then they turned the air conditioner, and thus the engine, back on.  Which was confusing.  Some brave kids decided to leave the bus and scope out what was going back on. 

“He says there’s actually coolant in the bus, so he thinks it’s an electrical problem, not the engine overheating.  But they won’t let him go, so we still have to wait for the coolant, and then they’ll discover that won’t work, and then they’ll call for a bus,” the guys reported.


We relay the news to our friends and settle down for a long wait.  I attempt to be productive on said psychology study guide.  About five minutes later, the mechanic shows up, and we cheer happily.  We’ve only been waiting half an hour!

Fifteen minutes later, we notice a bus has pulled up beside ours.  Everyone is startled; we expected that they hadn’t even called one yet.  Turns out it only came an hour, from Harrisburg, but we are still beside ourselves with excitement in getting out of this bus and back on the road.  We grab our bags and switch buses.

I’ve just sat down next to a new girl and discovered that she lives on my hall when they call us out of the new bus and back into the old one. 

This is confusing.

Apparently, the replacement bus didn’t have enough seats for us all.  And apparently, the old bus is now safe to ride.

We cross our fingers and hope for the best. 

And thankfully, nothing else happens.  It only delayed us an hour or so, which is still better than the four hours we were expecting to sit in the cramped bus.

And I was greeted by a little girl with flying hair, as she managed to jump and run at the same time.  It was the cutest thing I have ever seen. 

May your weekend be equally adventurous! 

grace & peace,


P.S. Roomie knows me so well.  I sent her a text to both check on her and complain that my bus had broken down.  (She was going home as well, but unfortunately caught whatever strange sickness I had, so she spent Thursday and Friday feeling dizzy and I was worried that things might not be well on her bus and train.)  She texted back with, “At least you have a story to tell!”

How true.


Entry filed under: adventures & misadventures, college.

words Sonia Nazario

2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Teacherperson  |  October 13, 2009 at 3:38 pm

    Great story! I am glad all worked out well. I only ever rode the bus in college.

  • 2. College is… « Overlapped’s Weblog  |  December 10, 2009 at 12:28 am

    […] of adventures.  Like when Kelly and I bolted to do nothing in particular at midnight.  Or when my bus broke down.  But yesterday’s officially tops them […]


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