It was only yesterday that I thought what would happen if I got down at the wrong halt and realise that before the bus leaves – will the driver allow me to ride again for free or will he insist on charging me another 2.75.
Perhaps it was premonition. Perhaps it was purely coincidental. It was less that 24 hours before I got the answer to my question. Yes today I fell asleep in the bus and missed my stop. Don’t ask me if I was drunk. If you have never fallen asleep in a New York bus as it slowly weaves its way through the concrete expanse you better see a sleep doctor. Maybe you have ADHD.
Any way the Q65 bus had reached its final stop. I was blissfully unaware, still in the land of fairies. “Last Stop!” shouted the driver, jolting me awake from my slumber. I told him I had missed my stop.
“You better get on that bus which is leaving right now,” said he. He could have left it at that. But he printed out a transfer, and ran to stop the bus that had already started moving. He explained the situation to the driver of the second bus and put me in that bus.
If you think the story ends there, hold on. I had dropped my hat in the first bus. The kind driver brought it with him and when passing my new bus, gave it to the driver of this bus. He was just driving back to the depot (one of those ‘not in service’ buses that annoy you from time to time).
This was a small gesture but the driver went out of the way, over and beyond the call of duty to help a totally unknown passenger. So the answer to my question is yes, New York bus drivers will go out of the way to look after their passengers.
May the MTA have a Merry Christmas.
Please share this if you are a regular commuter in NYC.