Sunday, December 21, 2008

My Experience with no Transit

Not one single red & white bus with a maple leaf on it was seen on Ottawa streets, not since Tuesday, the 9th of December.

I haven't been spotted outside my own house since then either. For me, I've been whiling away my time at home a week and a half. I've determined that none of my friends are reliable - they all live in Barrhaven too, and they weren't sure whether or not they were getting to school at all. One told me I could either walk and camp there or stay home.

At least I've got my school work done through e-mail.

I've no realistic options so I've been at home throughout the entire time. I also got ill at the end of last week but at least it cleared up by last Sunday.

It's too bad for the current circumstances. I've been on top of the news and I know that the union won't take any fair offer from the city. Hopefully they'll accept something by the new year, though unions, I find, tend to be unreasonable. Never mind the huge traffic snarls on roads like the Queensway, Carling, Merivale, and West Huntclub. Never mind families who wholly depend on getting anywhere on transit. Never mind people out in bedroom and satellite communities like Barrhaven or Orleans or Kanata whose work and education are at stake due to no bus service.
They want drivers to be able to work as long as possible with no limits to take advantage of getting overtime and longer hours, while the city believes that to be an issue of safety (imagine being driven on a bus by a driver that's been on the road for fourteen hours straight). I would agree with the city; we don't need weary, fatigued drivers with lower judgment just for the higher pay benefit. They benefit - we get potentially injured or killed.

But hey, other than the fact that this also affects our Christmas shopping, it's the holidays. I have no more school to miss now. Christmas trees are up, shows and concerts are put on, lights decorate houses around the blocks, and music is playing. However far and determined people can get without buses, Christmas shopping is going on everywhere. And it's going to be a White Christmas, as the big storm is hitting us today. I have a family affair tonight.

So in light of the lack of bus service, spend your holidays with joy and laughter. Most of all, have fun.

-Justin C.