Monday morning, my son and I board the 7:05am Manhattan bound express bus. My son rides the bus with me half way into the city and gets off on Queens Blvd to go to school. This morning in particular the bus gets stuck in a massive amount of traffic on the ramp at the Queens Blvd exit on the Van Wyck Expressway. As I see the driver having trouble making his way onto the ramp, I quickly inform him that I am getting off at the second stop on Queens Blvd. He knods and assures me that he will get me to Queens Blvd. For your information, that is Queens Blvd and Union Turnpike. Shortly after, I noticed the driver go off route and begin heading down the Grand Central Parkway. He gets off at the next exit and is navigating his way through a residential neighborhood trying to get back to Queens Blvd.

Upon getting to Queens Blvd, the driver calls out the stop “Queens Blvd”. My son and I get up and make our way to the front of the bus, then I realize that I have no idea WHERE on Queens Blvd we are. At this point, I kindly ask the driver, “Where are we?” He says, “Queens and Yellowstone Blvd” he then asks me where on Queens Blvd was I trying to go. I told him that the stop that I would have liked to get off at was Queens Blvd and Union Turnpike, which is about 30 blocks up from where we were. The driver begins printing out bus transfers and tells me that I can use the transfers to get on the regular bus and take it back up Queens Blvd.

At this point, I am looking at the time and thinking to myself, “did I not just pay $12.00 for my son and I to board this EXPRESS bus that is supposed to EXPEDITE us to our destination?”

I say to the driver, “Let me understand what you are telling me, you want me to get off of the EXPRESS bus and take the LOCAL bus backwards 40 blocks after paying two full fares to go express to the stop that I get off at every day? You do realize that I am trying to get my son to school right?”

Of course, you have what I like to call ear hustlers beginning to chime in… One woman says, “well it’s not that far.” I told her, “of course not to you because you don’t have to get off of the bus.”

At this point the driver says, “you are right, I will take you to Queens Blvd.”

When I get back to my seat, another ear hustler is now turned ALL the way around in her seat telling me that what I am doing is not fair and blah blah blah. So I kindly told her that she should probably turn herself around and tend to her business. WELL, that set her off, this VERY mature woman tells me and I quote, “I will bust your (INSERT EXPLETIVE).”

HOUSTON WE HAVE A PROBLEM…

My son jumps up and says, “Excuse me miss???”

I calmly informed the lady that none of what she stated would be taking place. And I advised my son to be seated because neither of us would be disrespectful or having unnecessary arguments with elderly people.

Approximately, 10 minutes later, the bus driver calls out “Queens Blvd and Union Turnpike.” My son makes his way to the front of the bus, turns back around and tells the woman to have a nice day. LOL

The moral of the story is….DO AS I DO, NOT JUST AS I SAY. I challenge you to evaluate your behavior and ask yourselves, “ARE YOU LEADING BY EXAMPLE?”

Let’s be clear, did the woman annoy me? Absolutely, because all I wanted to do was to get my son to school and make my way into the office. Had she met me a few years ago, would my response have been the same… probably not. However, as you get older, you get wiser and you learn that everything and everyone doesn’t deserve that level of energy. Most importantly, had I reacted to her ignorance what example would I have been setting for my teenage son?

So I ask, “Are you leading by example?”