Have you noticed when you watch the news, there are increasingly more incidents of violence on public transportation in the Lower Mainland?
Some acts of violence are against the driver, some are against passengers, and sometimes they’re even against the bus or train.
Williams Lake has, in the past, held the dubious honour of being the most crime-ridden city in B.C.
I remember when I first started riding the bus, I’d sit at the bus stop wondering whether I’d feel safe or uncomfortable on the bus. I especially didn’t like finding out that I’d have to transfer at Boitanio Park.
Well, I’ve been riding the transit bus in Williams Lake for some time now.
In order to get home, I ride through downtown, the northern part of the city, what we used to call Glendale, and the residential area, past schools and houses.
I’ve met a few of the bus drivers now, and they’re very helpful and give a friendly greeting as I board the bus.
There are many kinds of people who ride the bus in Williams Lake.
Sometimes an adult will get on by him/her self, a family might get on, a mom and dad with their little one in a stroller and even bicycle riders.
As we ride along, people are chatting and laughing, some might be reading and others are enjoying the scenery.
Whenever a passenger exits the bus, without exception, there’ll be a “thank you” to the driver, and perhaps even a “have a good evening.”
Of course the driver responds in kind.
I’ve had very positive experiences, waiting at the bus stop and riding the bus.
I’ve met interesting people, even friends I hadn’t seen for ages.
I recall one time, while I was sitting waiting for the bus, a young aboriginal man was pushing vehicles for drivers who got stuck in the snow.
When he finished pushing the last vehicle, he turned to me and asked if I was going to be okay sitting there waiting, by myself.
I told him I would be, and I have to say I was very touched by his concern. I didn’t know him and he didn’t know me.
We may have held that dubious title, however, my experience riding the bus has shown that’s only a very small part of Williams Lake.