Monday, August 31, 2015

First Day

My daughter was much like I was, excited to be going back to school. She was up 45 minutes early and within a few minutes she was dressed and combing her hair, a record for sure. We made sure we were out at the bus stop 10 minutes early since this was the first day and the buses always have to iron out the kinks. Since this was also to be the third bus company to run buses for our school since we have lived here, I especially figured there would be kinks. Five minutes early or late of the time they had told me was certainly possible.

Twenty minutes later and 10 minutes after the agree upon pickup time, the bus still hadn't come.  The bus had only been this late once before and that had been due to a fender bender. The lady at the bus company told me that the bus was running late due to road construction and would be there. I gave her my address and asked her if she was sure since there was no road construction on the route and I had been told they were running the same route and times as last year. She assured me it was coming and to be patient with them.

Ten minutes after that phone conversation and now ten minutes before school was to start, the bus still hadn't come. As we got into the car so I could drive my daughter to school, I called the company again on the speaker phone and asked if the bus was still running late or something else was going on. She said it was and then I told her that it was now 20 minutes late and I assured her that I could be clear across town and back, road construction or not in that amount of time. She asked what the bus number was. I told her that I have never seen the bus and this was the first year her company has been doing this route so I didn't know. I gave her my address and my daughter's name and after five minutes of discussion, she said that my daughter wasn't in their system. I asked her why she told me the bus for our route was late after giving the same information now 15 minutes ago. I told her that I had spoken to this company two days ago to verify all this and they had told me my daughter was in their system then and even gave me the 7:30 pickup time. She didn't know how she got off the list but assured me she wasn't on the list.

At this point, a man picked up the phone and proceeded to ask me all the information that I had covered with them two days ago and for the last ten minutes of phone conversations. After being put on hold for two lengthy periods of time, he told me that he couldn't reach the bus but that it should have been there at 7:30. I  told him that I had waited until 7:50 and it wasn't there and at this point it was 8:10. He said my daughter was in their system despite what I had just been told. He said he would send out another bus to pick up my daughter. I thanked him but said that during this time talking with his company to get everything straightened out, I had driven to school, dropped my daughter off and was now pulling into the garage as we speak. I said I was more concerned about her getting a ride home after school and what would happen tomorrow morning. I was assured that these problems would be ironed out. We'll see.

5 comments:

ErinFromIowa said...

Ugh! You conveyed this so well! Lol
My youngest is now twenty-four. All these years later reading this still brought back PTSD school bus screw up memories for my three daughters.

Ed said...

Erin - I know there has always been bus screw ups and remember those when I was a kid well. However, it gets me that their instincts when dealing with a concerned parent was to lie to them three times, twice about road construction that was never there and once that my daughter wasn't in their system when she in fact was. Had they came out of the gate saying something wasn't right and asking me if I could provide transportation to school for my child, send someone out to correct the problem or in the least admit that the don't know what is happening and they will call me back as soon as they figure it out, I could forgive them.

ErinFromIowa said...

Yep! I got all that about the fancy stepping they did. Dealt with that in the past also. So irritating. Scary too, safety wise. Actually, I still deal with it at times. Paratransit. ;)

sage said...

My daughter never had the pleasure (yes, that word is dripping with sarcasm) of taking the bus... we lived to close to the schools in Hastings and now (that she drives) she goes to a private school. I hope you get it worked out.

warren said...

Our bus is mostly reliable but we are close enough that I just take the kids any more...it's just not worth the hassle of wondering whether it will come any more...