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April 26, 2017: The ABC’s of Listing, R is for Routine

At home, my day begins with my getting up and tending to the animals. I then write, and after I do my movement awareness work. In the afternoons I exercise the horses. In the late afternoons I do one big chore. I then read. This sort of schedule doesn’t leave much time for anything else. Still, I make lists, so that I might squeeze in other things that need to be done. Hope remains that thing with feathers.

Traveling is a break in routine. My list today was straightforward. Catch the Greyhound Bus going from Spokane to Seattle, change buses in Everett, then travel to Bellingham. I wasn’t even going out of state.

The BCHA Alaska Crew

Things did not go according to plan. It was a beautiful, warm, sunny day. I caught the bus to Everett – the seat next to me was empty. I had room to sort stuff out. I alternated reading and dozing. I got to Everett, got off the bus, then oh oh, there was no connecting bus. I waited along with a handful of other people who too were wondering where the bus was. The bus station office was closed.

I asked the security guy what was up and he said that the traffic was backed up, adding that one time, the bus did not arrive until 2 a.m. Though the weather was warm, I could not imagine waiting at the stop that long. I decided instead to hop on a local bus to Mt. Vernon and there, get on the bus going to Bellingham. Therein lied further uncertainty. I wasn’t sure about the timing of the Mt. Vernon/Bellingham Connection, and at that point in time, I did not know if the Bellingham bus stop was close to the Greyhound Bus Station.

And the drivers pride themselves in saying as little as possible. It seems like a complete sentence is an outward sign of failing to do their job. To add to my woes, my cellphone was low on juice, so I was unable to call the friend who was picking me up in Bellingham and tell her I’d be late.

I made it to my destination okay – I was, in the end, three hours late. My friend Lisa told me the scheduled Greyhound bus was just two hours late. Go figure.

Lists, internal and external, fail to allow for the uncertainty that accompanies a deviation of plans. And written or otherwise, don’t in any way acknowledge that deviations often result in hardship. In this case there was the hardship of uncertainty. I had no idea when I’d reach my destination.

I have written about this because the stories that make it on paper tend to hold more weight than those that do not. I hope that someone, somewhere, reads this and fully empathizes with me. Sad to say, in order for there to be requisite empathy, the reader would have to have the same experience. I would not wish for what happened to me today to happen to anyone else; however, drawing upon a like experience would suffice.

Next: 117. 4/27/18: The ABC’s of Listing S is for Subtraction

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