Monday, 7 February 2011

An Upside Down Sort Of A Day

It was an upside down sort of day.

The school run happened. Fighting through the spray from the vast quantities of water which had accumulated on the roads. The rivers were roaring. The rain kept coming. The children huddled in small groups at their pick-up points. They looked miserable. Even more miserable than the sheep did yesterday.

The rain continued. Mid morning, when I was on the local service, there was a cry for help from another driver who had been delayed by some floods. "The water was up to my knees," he wailed. he had to rush off on another job and asked if I could run his group the last five miles up the road.

I had to abandon two elderly ladies at the bus stop. They were vaguely angry in an understanding way. The school from Tyneside took precedence. The local ladies would have to wait for fifteen minutes. It turned out to be a great journey. The teachers were the most ebullient I had ever met. No rain or floods would dampen their laughter and lightheartedness.

"Eeh, what do I do with these baggy pants?" one of the teachers shrilled. Of course they were a city school who had arrived at the outward bound centre, unprepared for the weather conditions. The outward bound centre had seen it all before and had wellies and macintosh jackets and trousers at the ready. The first attempt at putting on these clothes was a disaster. They were all ill fitting. So the teachers spent the next ten minutes swopping various items.

I thought of the pensioners freezing in the bus stop with the hole in the roof.

The teachers finally rearranged themselves and sat with difficulty back in their seats. They were like balloons in their restricted extra waterproofs.

"Things like this must make your day," one of the teachers leant over and said to me.

"No comment," I replied, knowing full well that I would be driving them back to there school in a couple of days time. I know what's good for me. They returned to their conversation about the food on their holiday in Turkey.

"Eeh that big white thing that looked like a wobbly lump of lard was disgusting. But I liked those fried chicken triangle things. They were lush."

The great advantage of having happy teachers on the bus meant that there was a ripple effect and all the children reciprocated. They were bubbling.

On return to the town, there was no sign of the pensioners. I was in the proverbial. They must have taken a taxi and sent a bill to the company. The boss would not be pleased.

He wasn't. But not because of the frozen pensioners. Another bus had been passing through the town and had picked them up. No, the boss had many other worries on his mind. A driver had parked too close to a bus and when he opened the door, it had smashed an indicator light. The Flying Pig had died in a puddle ten miles away and to cap it all, the old Bedford had given up the ghost five miles in the other direction.

So my day was not so bad really.

1 comment:

  1. Your gaffer won't be happy about his beloved Bedford breaking down.