I am off this week, hallelujah!  One thing I look forward to during vacations is NOT commuting.  If you are living that commuter life, then you know the struggle.  When making the train or bus – EVERY second counts!

Since I’ve spent way too much time reading lists about every other life occurrence this year – Thank you Buzzfeed and Christopher Hudspeth (of Thought Catalog) – I figured I’d make my own list:

Top 5 Commuter Realities

1. An aversion to school buses.
It doesn’t matter if you have children or not – though I’d hope it’s not your kid’s school bus that you’re trying to bypass. This aversion is to any bus or large contraption moving during precious commute time: garbage trucks, recycle trucks, newspaper deliveries – pretty much any thing stop and go!

2. Love/Hate relationship with coins.
You only need to run out of quarters one time for this to develop. The moment may be later christened with your bus or train sailing by, or you losing your perfect spot, or (my personal favorite) a bright yellow envelope on your windshield telling you where to send more of your coins. You know it’s real when lunchtime comes around you’re willing to break bills for $0.08. Two dimes and a nickel mean more to you now than they did during your bubbalicious days and before you know it, you can tell anyone who cares where all of the laundromats are.

3. Flashing lights are simply issuing a challenge. Usually accompanied by beeping this is the start of the moment of truth. Will you make it? Whether they are indicating that the train doors are closing, the stop sign is about to be opened, the light is about to turn red, I’ve seen every day humans turn into 007 at these vital moments.

4. Street crossers – Period.
God bless the crossing guards who manage the motorists each morning while crossing our kids and adults.  Yet, it’s not these intersections that have the excitement, OH NO! It’s the unmanned street corners – I swear to you I’m talking about street crossers and not street walkers (that’s a whole other list). It’s at these intersections that the old man in his walker – with the fast shuffle that stays in place – goes toe to toe with a mid-sized sedan. The Harry Potter Knight Bus comes to mind.  It’s the predictability of the unpredictable. There’s the crosser that never uses the cross walk. The one that crosses last-minute (blame the flashing hand – see #3 above). The one that blocks the turning lane, and the stroller who walks with no sense of purpose or direction.  Love it or hate it, you’ve been one of these people at some point.  Admit it!

5. Mental math is your constant companion but time is not your friend.  You just have to watch one more episode on your DVR before you turn in. That gives you 5 hours and 49 min until your alarm goes off… You’re still good. You give yourself an hour to get out the door each morning but then decide you don’t need the WHOLE hour right? If you snooze twice, max three times… You’re still good. You need 20 minutes from the house to the train to catch the 7:30 am – you want to make sure you have enough time to feed the meter with your beloved coins, its 7:10 am… You sneeze, it’s 7:14 am… Wait! What?! Let your morning mantra begin “I can make it”!

It is what it is. Happy Commuting!

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