I don’t drive.
It’s not that I haven’t tried. I did get my learner’s permit. I even did in-class and in-car training. But, I completely flaked out when it came to doing the actual driving test. I have never tried again.
My husband believes the world is a safer place without me on the road. Before you laugh, I actually agree with him. My eyesight sucks. My judgement is poor. My spatial orientation? Fuggedaboutit!
So, I use public transit. The system is actually pretty good where I live. It’s not the best or the cleanest. But, it gets me where I want to be most of the time.
A lot of people I know can’t believe that I don’t drive. Honestly, when you live in the city, it’s more of a hassle than anything. Plus, the cost of owning a car is ridiculous.
Of course, my husband does complain when he does have to drive my sorry ass around. But, he knew what he was getting into when he married me. He, he.
Anyhoo, where is this going? Well, there are times when the train may be delayed or the buses are running late. It happens. C’est la vie. I really try hard not to complain about it, because it’s out of my control. I could cry, rant and pull my hair out. But, it wouldn’t change a freaking thing. I think that if you’re going to complain about something, it should be a legitimate one.
Here’s what happened the other day.
I live out in the suburbs. What we call the downtown core is a 35 minute train ride away. I had to meet a friend downtown to go shopping and have lunch. No problem.
Getting there was uneventful. Returning home was an adventure.
As soon as I had purchased my ticket, I looked up at the board to see that my train had been canceled. The next train was also canceled. What the frak?
Apparently, a freight train had broken down. As a result, passenger trains were being re-routed as they share the same tracks.
So, there was a delay.
Did it suck? Big time! Did I complain about it? Nope. I grabbed a coffee and waited to see what was going to happen.
Actually, the last time I had complained about a train being delayed, I found out in the paper the next day that someone had died on the tracks. So, no more griping from me.
Anyhoo, a train finally did arrive (a full 40 minutes after I had gotten to the station), and I was on my way home. Well, almost. We had to sit on the track for nearly 35 minutes while they worked out some signaling problems.
Once we got going, I had to hear people whine.
They should give us a free ride.
Why didn’t they tell us they were running late? (Uh, dude. They only announced it on the P.A. every 5 freaking minutes!)
Nice to see that our tax dollars are being put to good use.
I really felt like screaming. I mean, a whole country was just devastated by an earthquake. And, you have the gall to complain about something that is really just a minor hiccup. Your lives will be unaffected by this setback. You will still get home to your flatscreen TVs and warm dinners. You will laugh about this the next day at work over a coffee.
There are many more people in the world that have less than nothing. You have absolutely no right to complain about getting home later than usual. So what if we’re sitting on a warm train for 35 minutes? It’s better than sitting on a pile of dead bodies in the Caribbean.
So, what was usually a 35 minute ride, took nearly 2 hours. Whoopee.
I guess the point of all this rambling is that we should really count our blessings. What we consider to be problems, mistakes, and obstacles are nothing compared to the hardships that some people (let’s face it, some countries) have to face on a daily basis. We take a lot of things for granted.
Before I gripe about something, I try to stop and realize just how good I’ve got it. I have a roof over my head, a beautiful family, a job, and reasonably good health. Yeah, I could stand to lose a few pounds. But, ultimately, I am really blessed.
So, don’t complain! Use that energy towards something more constructive.
At least try.