I got to ride a school bus today as I went with my daughter's choir to their performance in St. George. It is nice to know that some things never change - many children crammed into narrow green seats, the black radio speakers tuned to the drivers favorite station, the roar of the engine as it tries to accelerate uphill and the bouncing and swaying.
Usually I go on these trips a few times each year and each time I am reminded of the many bus drivers that transported me to and from school and school related activities during my childhood.
I remember Marlowe Poll occasionally taking a moment to check on his cows during the morning drive. Now there are homes where his barn and pasture were.
I remember the dense fog on Hillfield Road each winter and knowing that there were hills and homes and stores just out of view hidden in the thick mist. Yet the bus delivered us without incident each morning to the school.
I remember the paddle with hole in it that one driver had hanging in the front of the bus. When we asked why it had a hole, the driver explained that the hole reduced the wind resistance so his swing wouldn't be slowed down. I never saw the paddle used on anyone, but his reaching for it was enough to calm the unruliest of children.
I remember the many bus drivers that would get off the bus to carry the smaller children from the house to the bus and then from the bus to the house so that the South Weber wind wouldn't blow them away. I remember being blown into a ditch as a first-grader by that wind one day after school when I thought I could walk on my own, so I appreciated the kindness and concern of these drivers.
I attended Clinton, Sunset and South Weber Elementary schools; North Davis Junior High School and Clearfield High School all while living in the same home in South Weber. Most of the time a trip on the bus from pick-up to drop-off was at least a half hour or an hour round-trip a day on the bus or over 2,000 hours by the time I became a senior in high school and decided I was too cool to ride the bus anymore and drove myself to school. Thank goodness for those dependable drivers that were still there when I ran short of gas money.
I am grateful that there are still dependable, patient individuals who are willing to safely transport my children on schedule from place to place each day with very little acknowledgement or thanks.