HomedyslexiaPublic Transit Confusion
One of the better labeled
bus stops.
By Seshkari (Own work)
[CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia
Commons

I’ve been taking public transportation for well over ten years now, so I have a good idea of how the local buses and trains work. When I first moved here, though, I ended up seeing a lot more of the city than I wanted to.

I don’t know how it is in other cities, but here, the majority of our buses have both a number and a letter. The 5 line, for instance has B, C, E, F, K, and M. The numbers denote the general route, while the letters denote changes during the day to that route.

Usually.

Sometimes, there doesn’t seem to be any sort of difference. Other times, the route number and letter at one time have different stops than at another. It’s enough to make you wonder what the point is.

As if the structure wasn’t confusing enough, bus stops aren’t often labeled clearly, and when you add dyslexia to the mess, it gets hard to navigate.

There’s also the 6, 9, 94, 46, and, well, the list goes on. You can probably tell where I’m going with this.

Naturally, when you move to a new place, you need to find employment, if you weren’t able to line that up beforehand. I was in the initial job-hunting phase, and attempting to make sense of the buses in order to get to an interview.

I believe I needed to catch the 9, and then transfer to another bus, but when the 6 rolled up, I got on. I saw 9, so that’s what I thought it was.

Imagine my surprise when I found myself at the university campus instead of a downtown street corner. It was in the middle of summer, the driver was cranky, I was understandably unhappy and completely lost.

I ended up missing that interview, but thankfully, it was early enough in the day that I could just catch a bus back to the place I had been at before.

I guess the flexibility to deal with unexpected changes to your day could be considered a dyslexic strength, because some mistakes really do destroy even the best laid plans.

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