I’ll leave an envelope in your mailbox with a letter explaining what this is all about, he said.
It’s hard to believe school starts again in just a few weeks! Where did the summer go?
Where did the years go?
During the school year, my kids are super
spoiled fortunate to be driven to school every day. Not like the early years when they actually wanted to get up early and take the bus; at least Noah did. Gone too, are the days when I’d follow the bus, every day, ensuring that my son didn’t get abducted along the way OR so I could be there, just in case he needed me in some way along the route OR God forbid, there was an accident and I needed to jump into rescue mode for my little boy on the big bus. Nope, those hovering masterful parenting skills vital to ensuring my son’s safe transport to school, are no longer needed. Indeed, it is no longer required of me — by me — to make a mad dash to my car as soon as the big double-wide doors are pulled shut. Trailing, oh-so-not-discreetly, behind the big yellow boat carrying my its precious cargo is something I just don’t have to do anymore.
Back in the day and during his entire first year on the bus, I’d follow and then veer off at the corner of Dunkin’ Donuts and Route 9 while the bus would head into Princess Circle where a cluster of apartment buildings were. The apartment-pick-up allowed me just enough time to run in for a cup-of-Joe and be back outside standing on the corner, ready to catch a glimpse of my then 5-year old who’d be peering out of the window directly behind the bus driver. The bus driver would make him sit in the seat right behind her every day.
I make all the little ones sit behind me, so I can keep an eye on them, she told me one day.
Thank you, Jan.
An older woman with a big heart, there was no pulling-the-wool over Jan’s eyes. And instead of balking at my stalker-ish behavior, she’d honk the bus horn two or three times and I’d over-hear her through her cracked window telling Noah,
Look, there’s your mom. Wave to her!
He and she, would, as they rounded the corner from Princess Circle to route 9, every time.
It made my day. Every-day.
And, to-this-day, if Jan sees me around town she honks her big yellow bus horn and waves to me with a big heartwarming smile on her face.
Thank you, Jan.
But, I digress.
My 5-year old is now going on 15 and he can sit where he wants to on the bus. Plus, these days, he has a companion. Well, sort of. He and his sister take the bus home almost every day together. Although I somehow doubt they actually sit together. And they don’t always get off at the same STOP. But people know they’re siblings, including their current bus driver, who Hannah has had now for the past two years in a row.
It was the end of June, school was over when the man on the other end of my cell identified himself as “Vinny”, my kids’ bus driver. He told me he would leave an envelope in my mailbox explaining what the call was all about.
According to the letter, each year the Federation of Workers representing nine units (including bus drivers) in the school district we live in, take part in a program that allows for 40 out of the well over 65,000 children served, to be recognized for exhibiting outstanding behavior.
Accompanied with the letter were 4-tickets to a Renegades game; our local minor league baseball team.
If our name comes up, Vinny said, we choose a student that we’ve come in contact with during the year that has shown exemplary behavior. We’re only supposed to pick one but I chose both your kids because they’re both great kids and really deserving. They never give me a hard time. They say hi and thank-you, are polite and Hannah helps me out with the little kids all the time.
Like a peacock fanning her feathers in full plumage, I could feel the pride swell inside.
Since my last post boasted the sibling rivalry that exists between my pair, I thought it fitting, to highlight their cooperation; even if they don’t always realize or recognize it; sometimes, other people do. Way to go Hannah and Noah!
Thank you, Vinny!