Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Alpha Bus Driver Race

On my way home from work today Greg asked me what I would do if something went wrong with his schedule (i.e. he slept in or had some other unforeseen event occur) in the morning and he was not able to give me notice. This truly could be a problem because he is just barely getting up when I am leaving my house so there is a very small window for coordination. After some careful thought I decided that in this situation I would call another co-worker who lives downtown and see if they would go a bit out of their way to pick me up. Having said that I should probably put Chris on notice to answer his phone in the morning if I ever call as it means I am probably stranded. My other option would be to hop back on the bus in the other direction to the I-15 transit plaza and catch the 960 to work. This scenario would probably result in my being an hour late but at least I would get there.

Today was the first time I had what I would consider a typical commute home. Greg and I got to his house a few minutes after 6 and I caught the 15 bus at 6:10 back to my stop on 54th. Ever since that incident on the 1 route I decided that I would never ride it again for any distance and I have avoided it several times in the last few days. I have even avoided it even while waiting for a very late 15 route bus and have just been hoping that my late 15 route bus will still beat the 1 route bus. Today I got to experience first hand how the 15 is faster that the 1. The 1 bus had passed us because one of our stops was before theirs and we tailed them for a few blocks. Then they had a stop and we came around to pass but got stuck at a red light right next to them. I think there might be an alpha bus driver thing going on with the two routes because our bus driver was revving the engine at the light and took off with as much acceleration as a bus can deliver. We easily passed the 1 bus and I didn't see it again. Maybe more people than just the disabled should have access to seatbelts?

My research into Flexcar has been continuing... Yesterday I decided to walk to the nearest car location from work to see how convenient it was. The car was an 8-10 min walk which was not ideal but will have to do for now. The nearest car location to my house is about a 10-minute bus ride away which is also less than convenient. So I called Flexcar headquarters in San Diego and spoke with the general manager. He said that there should be a car closer to my work and home very soon. He also mentioned that if my company gets a corporate account with several users they would locate a car much closer. On another note I asked him why there are no cars near my house, which is in the college area. He said that the college (SDSU) has been resisting any additional strategies that reduce car use any further as their parking revenue is down as a result of the new trolley station. This attitude coming from an institution of higher learning is simply inexcusable. In any case he said they should have a car in my neighborhood as early as this fall and certainly within the next school year.

Tomorrow I will be borrowing a co-worker's car for the first time. I have a meeting at the City of Santee and Reegan was more than agreeable to let me use her car for the allotted time. This is certainly a solution for now but I feel like I should not burden other workers too often with my carbon conscience. My Flexcar application should be processed by early next week and I am looking forward to my inaugural ride in one of their vehicles! After I get a feel for their service I may recommend that our company consider a corporate account. All of the issues that I had feared most about being without a car seem to be working out. This is very pleasing and I hope it continues this way; I might be selling my car sooner than anticipated. And I couldn't be happier.

No comments: