04 November 2015

thoughts//missing the bus

(^this place exists and I got to go...st malo is a gorgeous walled city just an hour away from where I live...and yes I know it's unrelated)

A little over two months, 64 days... When I look at it in just numbers it doesn't seem like much but in terms of memories it feels infinite. I know I've said it before, but I am still stuck in a bit of an in between situation - my time in Rennes feels very long short. I've certainly adapted quite a bit to my new home and though you'd never find me in public transportation at home the bus has become a habit here...but not quite a mastered art yet. I don't exactly have hope that I'll ever get it perfect since my brother hasn't done it yet, and he's lived here all his life, but that doesn't mean I wouldn't like to try. 

I'm writing this on my phone at a bus stop, so as you can guess I'm waiting. This time it's because I arrived a few minutes before the bus was scheduled to but sometimes I find myself waiting at the bus for a less glamorous reason - I missed the bus I meant to get on.
The first time it happened I almost cried...the first day of school, the first time that I had to get myself somewhere, my first chance to prove myself capable of living in Rennes and I had failed. I clung to a few desperate shreds of hope as I ran flat out towards the 72 bus , then watched it let out a gentle "pshh" and roll away. A few heavy footfalls and I was back to walking, then just standing staring at the stop, checking the schedule for the next bus. I called the director and (almost crying) told him I'd be late. I made it to school only a few minutes late to first class, but I was not even a little happy to have it happen. To be honest, I thought about giving up right then. 

I took a few more missed busses and disappointment but I eventually realized that perhaps I was looking at the situation in the wrong light. Maybe missing my bus was more positive than negative... With the exception of weekends, my bus comes frequently enough that missing it means only a few minutes of tardiness, less if I've scheduled in extra time. In the grand scheme of things, being a few minutes late to lunch or class or a study sesh really doesn't matter. 

Even more importantly, the few minutes that I lose on one end translate into something beautiful on the other end. About a month into the school year I found myself sitting at a bus stop, waiting for the next bus to arrive when I realized that I was letting my mind wander. I had ten minutes to spend on whatever I wanted, without anything else scheduled in its place or demanding my attention. I realized how insanely busy I'd been and how comparatively calm and precious these few minutes at the bus stop were. I have no plans of deliberately missing my bus anytime soon but I now see the rare occasions as an unexpected gift of time- time to just think about anything, everything or nothing.

People say that you do all your best thinking in the shower but I would argue that the bus stop is an even better place - there is no risk of getting shampoo in your eyes. 


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