- Yesterday, the temperature plummeted from the mid 40's to the low 0's with lots of wind chill, so our rain turned into horrible snow. I decided to ride the bus home rather than risk driving with Loki (love the guy, hate his driving). Due to the weather, the traffic was ridiculous - it took the bus an hour to drive the mile from my office to the Old State House bus stop. That's okay, I had music to listen to.
But then the batteries on my portable CD player died. And then we picked up a guy who spent the rest of the bus ride bitching and moaning about how slow we were moving, complete with lots of swear words*. In my imagination, I stood up and said "All right, Mr. Potty Mouth, is your attitude going to make the snow stop? Is your constant swearing going to make the cars move faster? No? Then please do us all a favor and shut up!" (in my imagination, the other bus riders would then applaud me.)
Instead, I maintained my New England distance and didn't say anything. A woman who was sitting across from him did tell him he was being a jerk, and I'm happy to say that he calmed down a bit after that, and his complaining was expletive free for the remainder of the ride.
- Last night, I managed to get to bed at a reasonable hour, but the wind kept waking me up. I kept visualizing chunks of my roof flying off into the wind, or my neighbors tree falling into my garage, or our little Saturn flipping over. That made for a rough night.
- This morning the kids had a delayed opening. Ordinarily, this would put a smile on my face as I went back to bed for an hour, but I couldn't risk getting to work late today because I had a bid opening. So I took the bus to work this morning. At the next stop after mine, the bus picked up a guy who WOULD NOT STOP TALKING! He started by asking to bum .25 because he was short. A woman gave him a quarter, so he sat down next to her. Then his monologue started (my comments in parenthesis):
"It's so nice to see a friendly face like yours first thing in the morning! Yesterday I said hello to a guy and he blew up at me. It's different down south. Talk to a guy in Virginia for 10 minutes and he'll invite you home for dinner. People in Connecticut are cold, man. Just like the weather. Hey, you know what I wish? I wish it were even colder this morning! Heh, heh! It's not quite cold enough, you know? Hey, you ever been to Boston? I gotta say, that is the cleanest city I've ever seen. Not like New York. I mean, in New York it might look good when you're on a main street, but you go down some of those side streets and you're knee deep in trash. But Boston, man, that place is clean. But I just got back 2 weeks ago, and hey, do you work at one of the insurance companies? Yeah, you must, everybody in Connecticut works for an insurance company. Which one you work for?" (He allowed her to answer this question) "Travelers, huh? That's the one that's right downtown, right? Hey, do you know what the building is behind that building, the one with the big glass foyer? You know, you go up these stairs and then there's this round thing with glass, an entryway? And right behind that is this brick building with the rich and shameless go all the time? I always see these guys in tuxedos and ladies in fancy dresses going in and out of there. You know, it has valet parking? (Once again, he allowed her to reply "The Hartford Club?" she suggested) "No, not the Hartford Club. You know where that castle building is, I think it's an Art School?" (again, she answers: "The Wadsworth Atheneum?") "Maybe. The building is right behind there." (Calmly, she says: That's The Hartford Club, like I already said" - I bet she was really regretting giving him a damn quarter) "Okay, maybe it is the Hartford Club. Hey, remember a few years ago, the help got murdered there? Some lady who cleaned there got killed - you remember that? (I fully expected him to take credit for the killing)....
He kept going, but I closed my eyes and drifted off until we got downtown. People like that guy are why I will continue to stand by my New England standoffishness. It saves me from engaging with people like Chatty Cathy.
- When I got off the bus, the sidewalk was basically a sheet of ice. This is problematic for all pedestrians, but it is worse when you walk with a cane. I can't imagine how wheelchairs navigate when the sidewalks are that bad.
- I was standing in line for a coffee (which I needed not just because of the caffeine but because it was about 30 below zero), and I was blowing on my hands to warm them up when I felt something on my face. I pinched my fingers together and pulled. It was a hair. A long white hair. Growing on my face.
- I get on my transfer bus and sit down for the quick ride down the street to my office. As the bus takes off, I hear a voice behind me:
Hey, you ever been to Boston? Man, that is one clean city. Not like New York...