‘The wheels on the bus go round and round’


You felt every rut and groove in the winding country road. If the bus driver traveled too fast around a curve, you went sliding into the person next to you as if the ride to school had strangely turned into the spinning teacups ride at the nearest amusement park. You’d pull yourself away from your friend sitting next to you and add one more reason to the lengthy list of things to hate about school.

school-bus-1770047_640For most of my youth, I rode a school bus to elementary and high school and the rides were the worst. I’m not even touching on how the ride seemed to take forever, picking up and dropping off every kid along the route. Every stop meant the bus lurching to get up to speed and then grinding to a sudden stop.

I never got used to the rides and, yet somehow all these years later, I’ve come to miss them.

The wheels on the bus go round and round
Round and round
Round and round
The wheels on the bus go round and round
All ’round the town

Let me be clear, I don’t miss the loud roar that emanated from inside the bus, how the air inside always felt stagnant and stale, or even loud grinding of the bus motor. The noise alone from inside the bus could knock you off your feet with pounding migraine. I miss none of those. 

school-bus-4406479_640.jpgInstead, I miss crouching low in the seat, with my knees up high on the opposing seat, and closing my eyes. I would use the time to shut out the outside world and let my mind wander aimlessly until we reached the front of the school. I would let the stress of getting up and getting ready for school wash off me. If I was successful, I would zone out for much of trip, returning to reality just as we pulled up to the school.

The wipers on the bus go swish, swish, swish
Swish, swish, swish
Swish, swish, swish
The wipers on the bus go swish, swish, swish
All ’round the town

On other days, I would simply use the time to compose myself and get ready for whatever the day was going to bring. I would go over my homework or what tests I had coming up that week.

I loved to read, so I often used the time to read whatever book I was reading at the moment, letting the book take me to new and crazy places. My nose would be inside a book and the time would fly by. In the 20 to 30 minute ride to school, I would manage somehow to solve all the world’s problems. (If the world, would have just listened.)

And yes, I would occasionally talk with friends on the bus about our favorite TV shows or how the Phillies or Pirates were doing, but I was never one to grandstand or “run” the conversation on the bus. I was much more likely to sit by myself in my own little world.

I would do all those things in one quick ride to school.

The driver on the bus goes ‘move on back’
Move on back
Move on back
The driver on the bus goes ‘move on back’
All ’round the town

courtney-hobbs-_GkzGwzSRQM-unsplash.jpgYou can understand why I might look envious on a bus ride now. I’m a parent. Of course, I could use the sleep.

Oh, I know I’m being overdramatic. All three of my kids hated having to ride the bus. In fact, my youngest son likes to tell horror stories about his ride and some of the things kids used to do on the bus. The language alone that other kids used on the bus would be enough to make get red in the face. When I talk about my bus ride, he thinks I’m crazy.

He walks to school now and couldn’t be happier.

The people on the bus go up and down
Up and down
Up and down
The people on the bus go up and down
All ’round the town

bus-1319360_640Yes, I’ve taken mass transit in the past, but it’s not quite the same as riding the school bus and not really much of an option where I live.

I have to settle now for driving my car and facing off with every other crazy driver on the road. It’s just not the same.

Oh, to ride the school bus one more time.

What do you miss from your school years?

The horn on the bus goes beep, beep, beep
Beep, beep, beep
Beep, beep, beep
The horn on the bus goes beep, beep, beep
All ’round the town

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