I ride the sky train a lot. I am thankful for it because it gets me to where I need to go quickly. That being said, it is almost ALWAYS an adventure. There is always a character, a situation, a smell. I ride the train mid day and also at 1am in the morning. No matter what time of day there is something to make me laugh, shake my head, or turn up my music louder.
I find the most interesting rides are coming home from work downtown. Usually this is at a late hour in the evening. Catching the last train on a Saturday night versus a Monday evening can be quite different, but don’t underestimate those late mid week rides, they have their own type of fun.
This past weekend, Sunday to be exact, I was coming home from work on a late train. Luckily I get on the first train at Waterfront station so am always guaranteed a seat for my 29 minute commute back to New West. I always strategically pick a single seat so to avoid any situations beside me. Usually I sink myself into that probably not so clean seat and blast some music. I’ve come to realize this is both a great idea and not so great idea. I can block out the obnoxious jerks and loud gum chewers. However, I’m sure I’m missing out on half the hilarious banter that comes on the train or the announcement that the train I’m on needs to be serviced and everybody needs to get off at the next station. That happened on the way TO work. Poor girl stood on the other side of the doors as they closed and brisked her away by her lonesome. It was really a funny situation. Her family stood on the other side like they would never see her again. I chuckled. Anyway, back to Sunday night. Pulling up to Burrard and Granville stations are always where I can judge what kind of ride it will be. This evening, I was engulfed in my phone and my music so was not paying attention to the doors opening and flooding in of people. May I remind you its Sunday evening…where these people are coming from I don’t know. Usually it’s me and the tired work crew and the odd drunk but tonight was bumpin. As we pulled out from the station I looked up and a man of at least 80 was standing beside me with two middle aged family members. He was hanging on, hangin on hard, as any 80+ citizen would. I pulled my left head phone out of my ear and asked if he would like to take a seat. The look on his face alone was worth it. Then I pondered why I was the first person to offer this. Jerks. I stood up and we swapped spots. He said thank you and sunk into that seat I warmed up for him. My somewhat foul mood turned upward. There’s something about helping the elderly that makes my heart happy. Now I’m standing in the zoo of people but my music and phone engulfment are keeping me happy. As we get closer to my station I see some seats opened half a train down. Even though I’m happy standing at this point I decide to go sit. I’m about a half cars length away from my original seat and now facing Mr. Thankful. I continue to text like a mad man and switch back to the songs I’ve been listening to on repeat. One stop away from New West, I look up and my gaze meets my new friend. He gave me the most loving, excited, warm, electric smile and a big “A-OK” sign as if saying, “Hey! We both got to sit now!” I can still see it in my mind. My smile stretched from ear to ear and I couldn’t wipe it off. I’m sure those looking in my direction wondered what my deal was. I was so happy in that moment. He was so damn cute and thankful. And all I did was give him my seat. I stood up and walked back towards him to exit. He gave me another flash of contagious happiness and mumbled with an accent something which I can’t recall. Something along the lines as everything worked out.
I left that train with a happy heart. On that Sunday evening, I’m glad I chose that seat. I’m glad that simple gesture had a positive impact, on probably more me than him. I’m glad I get to ride the train. We will see what happens on tonight’s adventure.