Life is a lesson. Lessons are meant to teach you and guide you. In some cases you won’t realise you had a lesson to learn until, days. weeks or even months later.
And that’s what happened to me.
Last week I was out all day, and on my return home I caught the bus. I explained my stop to the Driver: where my stop was, what it looked like and where it was next to. (The reason I do this is because unfortunately the Bus route name is different to the stop itself, so I always give clear instructions to every Driver). After doing this, I politely asked the Bus Driver to announce my stop when we arrived and he agreed.
The traffic was heavy and the bus took longer than it should have, I eventually felt the usual turn of the bus turning onto my road, and unusually people got off at the stop straight after the turn onto my road.
OK i thought, my stop is 2 away.
The bell rang and someone got off, as the Bus travelled further down the road I thought to myself; this bus is taking longer than usual to get to my stop., that must have been my stop just then…
I pressed the bell,, and as I got myself ready I asked the passenger next to me which stop this was? She informed me, we were outside the College,I realised the Driver had gone too far, and hadn’t announced my stop.
As I walked to the front of the bus I asked him: is this the *** Stop?
“Yes this is your stop.”
I thanked the Bus Driver and got off.
This is NOT my stop! I thought a second later.
OK no worries I thought, it’s pretty much a straight line i’ll just have to walk right back to the bottom of the road and cross over where it’s safe.
On my travels I had to stop, there was a heavy junction pouring out traffic. I hesitated for a while, the traffic was really heavy and as I had never crossed this junction before I was trying to figure out how wide the crossing was.
At the same time 2 young girls approached me and asked if I was alright?
I explained that the Bus Driver had dropped me off at the wrong bus stop and I wasn’t too sure how far down the road I was, because I hadn’t come across this junction before.
They were really helpful, walking with me across the road, and even tried to GPS my road, so I could figure out where I was.
Unfortunately though, the Girl couldn’t get GPS signal, but insisted she wanted to help.
This became awkward for me for 4 reasons:
*The Girl had no clue where I was on about
*Her GPS couldn’t get a signal
*She was much Younger than me
*She told me to wait there whilst she went and asked her Mum
I stood there for a good few minutes feeling awful that this young girl had no clue where I was but was going out of her way to help me. I felt stupid because I had my phone on me and could have found my location via GPS but I couldn’t hear my phone as the traffic was too overpowering, and the Girl had already disappeared.
I wanted to walk off and just blunder home by myself, but I didn’t know where the girl had gone, and I felt rude just walking off when she was only trying to help me.
When she came back, we were no further forward than 5/6 minutes previously, her Mum couldn’t help, and she was waiting for a Bus on the other side of the road.
I tried my best to explain my surroundings as to where my bus stop should be. The Girl read Street names, and together we figured out where I ought to be.
Again She insisted on walking with me, and because I felt terrible for all the effort she had gone to already I didn’t want to say no.
We walked a little further down the road and my stubbornness got the better of me, I stopped in the Street and asked the Girl to Clarify where we were and that I was heading in the right direction, she said yes, and so I said i’d be fine from here.
As i’d previously mentioned to her I knew my Street was on the other side of the road, to which she insisted on crossing me over so I didn’t have to walk to the bottom and come back on myself.
I was really grateful for this,, as I knew this would take a good 5 minutes off my walk!
We crossed over and I thanked her kindly for her help and support, and I told her to go back to her Mum.
And off I went on my merry way…
I won’t bore you with the details, as this first bit is long enough.
I got utterly confused, and asked another passer by if they could tell me where my road was?
It happened again, the young lad didn’t know, and explained he would ask his Nan who was just ahead of us.
More waiting awkwardly.
I was on the right path, I just had to take the next left.
I took the next left.
Hang on this is an alleyway. I do not live down an alleyway.
I turned on my GPS, my destination was 430ft away at 8o’Clock.
8o’Clock I go. There’s a wall. here…
GPS: Your destination is at 10 o’Clock,,, Another wall.
I go round in circles like this for at least 5 minutes, until I tackle my way out of the god damn alleyway!
GPS: Your destination is 410ft away at 3 o’Clock,,,
But this is the wrong way! *The traffic needs to be on my right not my left!
*GPS: Your destination is 398FT away at 9 o’Clock.
OK that sounds more like it…
*i’ll just confirm where I am…
GPS: Your destination is 408ft away at 4 o’Clock
Are you actually kidding me?!!
Fuck this, GPS you are shit i’ll just do it on my own!!
*I haven’t come to a crossing yet, why am I not at my crossing yet?!
Surely it’s almost there?*
I can’t figure it out because there is grass along the road side of the pavement…
*Oh a person. *
I think he was hard of hearing as I asked him the same question several times, and he kept saying “Sorry what?”
Finally he hears/ understand what i’m asking, double checks the road and voila! It’s my road!
I thanked the man, and headed up my road.
I was relieved to say the least.
I got home in one piece.
But I was on edge, I couldn’t settle or concentrate or think clearly.
40 minutes had passed when I next checked the time, Gary should have just finished work, I shall call him.
I told him from the beginning what had happened. and admonished myself for asking for help instead of trusting my gut. Using quite a few profanities whilst talking about the lying Bus Driver.
Talking to Gary I felt a weight had been lifted, I was home, I was safe, he’d be home soon, and I could finally relax and as my body was no longer in the stage of heavy numbness I didn’t have to worry any longer.
So what was the life lesson I learned that day?
I should trust my instincts. When the person rang the bell before me, and I thought to myself, this is my stop, I should have gotten up and at least asked the Bus Driver, not sit back and wait, hoping he’ll tell me.
I understand that he may have completely forgotten to announce my stop, he’s human after all… but the fact he lied to me I won’t stand for. He and I both knew it wasn’t my stop when I asked him, and the reason I know this is because I explicitly told him I get off before the College stop.
I felt terrible accepting help from every individual I encountered that day, especially the 12 year old girl I spoke with. Of course I was completely grateful she made sure the road was safe for me to cross, twice. But If I had of just allowed myself to blunder through it instead of accepting sighted assistance I wouldn’t have ended up in the mess I got myself into.
From that day I have also learned that I need to explore the area past my stop, on both sides of the road, so if I were to end up in a similar situation again, I could be confident in the knowledge that I just need to follow the road down, until I know exactly where I am.
That was a tough lesson to learn, especially as deep down I knew I could have gotten myself hone in one piece. Yes it would have taken me longer, and I may have been a bit stressed until I finally reached a point in the road i knew, but that day i didn’t trust myself, and lady luck wasn’t on my side!
It was a bad blind day, I tell ya!!!
Have you ever gotten yourself into sticky situations where you knew deep down you’d be OK, but ignored it and asked for help – just encase?
I’d love to hear your thoughts and opinions on my bad blind day! 😉
Much love, Sassy x