Thursday, August 30, 2012

'Da Bus

Over the summer Jake usually takes me and picks me up from work so we can save on parking. But - today was the first day of school and he had to leave the house really early.  Let's face it, paying for parking sucks. It's 5 bucks a day here in LQA - Lower Queen Anne, that is. That's $1,200 a year.  I know it could be way worse if I worked downtown, but in that case, the bus is so much cheaper, its a no-brainier - it's obvious you should take the bus if you are paying upwards of $10 to park each day.  Jake and I have been trying to figure out how to coordinate our schedules in the morning and afternoon so that he can drop me off and pick me up at work. Since we only live 7 minutes (2.8 miles to be exact) away from my office, I am not really concerned about saving money on gas but I guess it does help by not driving every day. Basically, I work 8:00-5:00 and Jake works from about 7:20-4:00 (sometimes later).  He usually leaves the house by 7:00 and sometimes I am just waking up when he leaves!  

The bus | Via
When I renewed my car tabs this summer, I got a bunch of free bus tickets which I have been taking advantage of until they ran out a few days ago.  I think the DMV was trying to promote taking the bus, so they enticed me with 8 free bus tickets {hey, that's $20 worth of bus tickets!} Today was the first day I had to pay to take the bus to work. I made sure to get my change from the grocery store last night and I actually paid $2.50 to ride the bus - and it was only 3 miles, that's almost a dollar a mile people. What I learned from riding the bus is that (1) the bus isn't cheap. Apparently you can get a monthly commuter pass for $90 - but if I paid for parking $5/day x 5 days a week x 4 weeks a month... = $100. It's only $10 more than taking the bus. Totally worth it for the convenience (2) no one is very friendly in the morning, myself included. (3) the bus is rarely on time. It's usually a couple minutes early or late. 

I "tried" taking the bus every day to work for a month {in Jan 2010} when I lived in Queen Anne but I had to take 2 buses {when my apartment was a little over a mile away from work}.  I refused to walk because I didn't want to be all gross and sweaty when I got to work in the morning.  Via the bus, it took about 45 minutes to get to work when it takes less than 5 to drive. I decided real quick that was not the mode of transportation for me.  The bus now picks me up right in front of our apartment {in Magnolia} and drops me off about 3 blocks from work. That I can handle!   

You can tell I have spent a lot of time analyzing this. I think that my compromise will be to take the bus in the morning to work and then have him pick me up on his way home most days.  This will cost $2.50 per day that I ride the bus. Some days I will have plans with friends where I will need my car and some days he will have plans after school where he won't be able to pick me up at the alloted time. But, I think it's a good compromise. Plus - I can get money loaded on my ORCA card {bus pass} pre-tax! Woohoo - love the commuter benefits.

This should be an interesting adventure... 

P.S. In Hawaii (where I grew up), instead of being called Metro, the bus is called simply "Da Bus". That is where my title came from. In case you were wondering.

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