Tuesday, November 17, 2009
I love my kids. I really do, but somewhere along the line they seem to have lost that internal compass that we all posses to tell as where we are and which way to go. I think they get this naturally via their mother. I use to jokingly tell the kids as they were growing up that if they were ever lost go in the exact opposite the direction their Mom told them was the way to go. Yesterday The Son went through such an experience although a lot of it has to do with not paying proper attention to detail more then anything else. The Son is currently working in Crystal City. As anyone who lives in the Washington area knows, commuting up I-95/I-395 is a nightmare on the best of days. Accordingly, The Son has bought into mass transit and rides the VRE train to and from work. However, yesterday VRE was running a limited schedule due to CSX, the track owner, working on its signals. VRE couldn't guarantee that the trains would run on time (and was running only a few trains to boot) and suggested its riders find alternate arrangements. We did our research and sent The Son off on a PRTC bus that runs between Woodbridge and Crystal City via the Pentagon. The ride in was uneventful, even quite pleasant, according to The Son. Coming home was a whole different matter. The Son had to go to Alexandria during the day and was late getting back to Crystal City ia the Metro. The Son decided to catch the bus home from the Pentagon rather then Crystal City. He called and I told him what bay to go to catch the bus, the bus number and the time the bus was scheduled to arrive. So far so good. After about an hour or so after that call, The Son calls saying he has no idea where he is. This from a kid (actually an adult) who has lived in this area his entire life. After much heated discussions and not a few profanities thrown in by both sides, we determined that he had gotten on the wrong bus and had ended up at the Mananssas Mall instead of Woodbridge. He was in the western part of the county versus the eastern part. Being the Dad I am, I went and picked him up - about a 30 minute drive each way. By the time I arrived at the Mall, he had calmed down by then and we had a quiet ride back to his car in the commuter lot he had dropped his car off before catching the bus in the morning. The best I can determine, he had never checked the bus number (or the destination listed on the sign on the front of the bus), but just boarded the first bus that showed up at the designated time. Sometimes you just have to pay attention to the little details. Hopefully a lesson learned.