22 hours ago
Thursday, September 2, 2010
School bus insanity: the driver let my five-year-old off at the wrong stop
Well, Sabrina's first day of kindergarten started off just fine: she agreed to wear the outfit we'd chosen, she downed a whole bowl of Raisin Bran for breakfast, we remembered to take her lunch out of the fridge, and she actually posed for photos without sticking out her tongue. Then all four of us drove to the bus stop. It never showed because, as it turns out, we waited on Park Street and the stop was on Park PLACE. So we drove her to school and I got to meet her teacher and classmates and see her cubby. It's so funny how kids are always so proud of their cubbies, as if they should come with a title and deed.
This is the first thing Sabrina got to do.
I get a call at work at around 4. "Hi, you don't know me, I'm a mom at your little girl's school," a woman says. She proceeds to tell me that Sabrina trailed her two girls off the bus. She noticed Sabrina standing there, looking perplexed. She realized nobody was there for Sabrina. That was because Sabrina was AT THE WRONG STOP. The bus driver had no clue where to take her. Sabrina forgot her address, but did remember her home phone. Except nobody was at home because Dave was at the bus stop. So they made a ton of calls and figured out Dave's cell. And they got her to the right stop. "So ignore the hysterical-sounding message on my voicemail at home," the mom said.
Whoa. Just, whoa.
I called the driver to figure out what had gone wrong. He kept rambling and when I finally said, "Could you try to just explain in one sentence?" he said, "It was my first day."
Which roughly translates to: Sorry, ma'am, I temporarily misplaced your little child on her first day of school but only because I was dazed and confused and that's actually not my fault because nobody told me that I had to know where all of the kids lived but no worries and the dog ate their homework.
Maybe I've been spoiled by just how cautious and careful drivers have been with Max. Maybe I am overreacting due to my own first-day jitters. But tomorrow, you can bet I will be calling the head of the bus company, and I hope it is not his first day, too.
Sabrina, meanwhile, couldn't be happier. "MOMMY! THE GUY ON THE BUS DIDN'T KNOW WHERE I LIVED! BUT NOW HE DOES!!!" she announced when I got home from work. She loves her teachers, she made some cool pictures, she saw a purple house when she was driving around on the bus.
"Did you write me a note for my lunchbox?" she asked, knowing full well that I had. "Yes! What did it say?" I asked. "It said 'Mommy loves Sabrina'" she told me. "Can you write me a note every day? Please?"
And just like that, I was calmer.
But I am still off to have a nice glass of wine.
Posted by Ellen Seidman at 8:05 PM