30 January 2007

Good Neighbor

In my neighborhood, the bus into and out of the subway station runs every 20 minutes in the morning and evening. It would be nice if it was every 15 minutes, especially now that it's actually cold outside, but at least I know when to expect the bus to arrive (within a reasonable window of time), and it is generally reliable, which is a near-miracle for the T.

This morning I was just a tiny bit behind schedule. Maybe I took too long to tie my shoes; maybe I was trying to get too many little things done before I left the house. Whatever the reason, the cycle of the traffic light at the corner was against me, and the bus pulled away just before I got to it. I stopped running and was taking a moment to debate the wisdom of walking versus standing still, when I noticed a car had stopped next to me and the driver was gesturing for me to get in. I took a quick look at the car and the driver--no one I knew, so I figured he'd been at the traffic light and had seen me running.

I got in the car, thinking the guy was going to offer to get me ahead of the bus so I could get on at another stop. But he said he was going over to Cambridge and was willing to drop me off anywhere along the way. We determined that Lechmere was a good target because it would not take him out of his way and would give me a direct ride to work. He introduced himself and told me where he lived, on a street that runs off ours. We passed a pleasant 20 minutes talking about the weather, the T, the increasing amount of traffic on the roads during his daily commute, and his daughter's college plans.

He dropped me off at the station, I thanked him, got on the train, and it rolled right out. I ended up getting to work about 15 minutes earlier than usual. So thank you again, Hernan, for making my morning, and my whole day, much more pleasant than it started out to be. Hopefully I'll see you around the neighborhood again.

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