Heisenbergian Commuting

I’m having a recurring difficulty in my stress management techniques.  To deal with that, I will come in early to work one or two days a week with the plan of stopping at a coffee shop and sitting for a peaceful cuppa, then, having eased pleasantly into the day, stroll into work with a bright outlook, brow unfurrowed.  Frequently I will select a coffee shop across the river, for ambiance, pastry, or really soft comfy chairs with ottomans.

And so it was today, in all those aspects.  I entered, half an hour to the good, ordered pain au chocolate and coffee, and proceeded to cleanse my soul in baked goods and vivifying beverage. Having eased as described above, I began work at the strolling part of the regimen. Through some  mischance of physics or particular virtue in the croissant,

time had escaped me in some small measure, and there were about three too few minutes to get to work on time.  I dislike being late, so I stopped a block away from the shop and checked the maps for those that stopped there.  There were four busses, and the tiny rough maps indicated that all started from downtown, crossed the river, and then went their ways.  I could easily make it to work on time on any of those busses.  A bus arrived.  I, strolling, climbed aboard.  Then it went off in an entirely different direction than “across the river”.

Now this has happened to me before, and I found, after I had bolted from that bus, that it went three blocks further, turned around, and crossed the bridge after all.  Deceptive, these busses.  So, not intending to be taken in again, I stood my ground and rode.  Well, sat my ground, but you get the idea.  I sat firmly.  No commuter sat more resolutely than I.

The bus continued to go in a direction that, while it veered and yawed in varying ways, could only be described as “not across the river”.  By this time, though, I was far enough afield that I feared leaving the bus; it was miles back to civilization, and there was no sign of other bus routes. The bus entered the freeway.  Had we been hijacked?  I began phrasing the call I would have to make to work.  ”Sorry, I’ll be a bit late.  We’re being hijacked to Cuba on a bus.”

Happily, the bus finally turned and went in the appropriate direction, that being “across the river.” Portland is known as the City of Bridges, though.  This was not the bridge that I sought, but rather one two miles south of that.  I left the bus as soon as we crossed, and called for guidance.  40 minutes later, I was at work, hardly even an hour late. Good thing I had a relaxing morning, or I’d be stressed as anything.

Crossposted from Epinepherine & Sophistry

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