You know the feeling. You’re checking your watch more than the White Rabbit and silently cursing yourself for once again placing your faith in Bus Éireann. While our innate Irishness is what makes us endearingly unique, it’s times like these that the lackadaisical attitude begins to grate. We can forgive the odd few minutes of tardiness…for traffic. Not to tune the radio and ask the passengers how to get Galway Bay FM.
For example, a legitimate Ryanair announcement: ‘There will be no toilet facilities on this flight’, followed by the reassurance that we ‘should be grand’ as it was a short haul flight. Sound, my bladder is convinced. It seems like the airline’s recent makeover managed to produce nothing more than a half-decent website and a bikini calendar ban. Passengers are still herded like cattle and the employees still look like they want to hang themselves.
On a recent trip to London, it was made painfully clear how we seem to be living in the dark ages when it comes to public transport. Overseas, if you so happen to miss the tube, another one arrives in 2 minutes, a bus in 5 minutes and a train in 10. Meanwhile, back home, your sole bus option is running 45 minutes late while the driver decides to offer no explanation and take a cigarette break. Your fury turns to pettiness and you think to yourself that a little vent on social media will cure all evil. Cannot connect to Bus Éireann WiFi. That red setter is laughing at you.
To address the obvious; No, I haven’t learned to drive yet. Yes, I am 23. No, there isn’t something abnormally wrong with me. I hope. I like to think of it as my own public service; reducing road accidents and possible deaths since 2008.
‘Oh it’s a pity you didn’t do it years ago, it would have been so much easier!’ Thank you Captain Hindsight. I apologise for my foolish preoccupation with the Leaving Cert and getting past a nightclub bouncer when I could have been doing a theory test. Moreover, limited funds did not allow for driving lessons, books, tax, insurance and a car itself. Maybe I’m a frivolous girl but I’d rather spend my money on clothes than hubcaps.
To be fair, my most recent attempt at driving was successful enough; I managed to move a vehicle without killing a small child or destroying a relationship, so onwards and upwards, really. But before I achieve the L plate (let alone the N plate), I’m going to stick with the red setter for another little while. If my local bus driver is reading this, I wasn’t talking about you, of course. Please pick me up for work tomorrow!