I decided to rekindle my research on Public Transit back in the USA. I’m temporarily staying with family and using their private transport until I find a place to relocate. Though, I was familiar with the area and could easily navigate around town , I had never used the city’s bus public transport system.
Logging into the city’s online Internet site provided me with area bus routes and a timetable. I even discovered discount rates for seniors. It was exciting to plot out the familiar routes around town to malls, downtown and university areas by bus. There was even an automated site with a software program that would deliver a personalized print out for your journey.
My enthusiasm was boundless. I wondered why I had never used the bus service before.
Then I attempted to plot out a trip online to a nearby shopping plaza with a grocery store and workout gym. I discovered that the route would not calculate despite the presence of marked bus routes. Further investigation revealed that two separate buses were required for transit – one going East – West the other going North – South.
The first problem was finding a way to transfer direction without going miles out of the way and using considerable time. The actual destination was only a mile away. It would be more efficient to go to a store across town than a few blocks away.
The second problem was a deal breaker. I decided that the store wasn’t so far that I couldn’t use an alternative form of transportation – walking. After all, I thought, I had been walking and riding my bike farther distances in CR.
The next day I decided to walk to the store following the bus route. Much to my surprise, I was unable to physically walk from my home to the adjacent street without fatigue and shortness of breath. I was now living in a mile high city andI hadn’t adjusted to the altitude well as inhaling frigid air into my lungs.
Adjustments were implemented. I slowly build up to the walk a day at a time. When I finally made it to the adjacent street and found the bus stop, I was again faced with a new factor – a very long steep hill I had not notice before.
Yes I could easily walk down the hill but how would I get back up the hill especially with packages.
I called the bus services and was told there was a bus service at every senior center in town that could take me to a grocery store. The service could not however get me or my packages from my home to the center or back again.
My adventure with public transportation reminds me of the story of the man hunting for his keys under a streetlight some distance from his house….. (Streetlight effect – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)
I continue to ask about access to public transportation from potential rental property managers throughout the USA. Now I ask for specifics and if the person I am talking with has ever used this form of transit.
I don’t have an answer yet for my original question “WHAT is public transport? Is it real? Does it work?”
I have however learned a new perspective in which to look at the world around me and ask questions.
Next private answers to public transport….