New Model


There’s a new model of bus that has been rolled out along my route. It’s clean and shiny and it still smells like factory plastic and I hate it.

The new bus is shorter than the old one. The raised portion in the back, where I like to sit, no longer includes any inward-facing seats: all the seats are front facing. As a tall person, this means my only option is to sit with my knees wedged up against the seat in front of me. Correspondingly, this means that trying to work on a laptop is an exercise in elbow management and wrist flexibility. I don’t ask for much out of my work space, but I do need at least enough room to get my elbows behind my laptop: it’s the chief reason why I can’t get any work done on airplanes and it’s the reason why I always sit facing inward on the bus.

I’m doing my best to adapt. In truth, I might only be riding the bus for another week or so: when I change jobs I’ll be driving for a few weeks until get used to the new commute. So far, I’ve tried sitting sideways on the seat (uncomfortable and impractical) and I’ve tried moving to one of the rearmost seats which has slightly more leg room and seemed to be a reasonably acceptable workaround, depending on availability.

I suppose in the scheme of things this is a small gripe to have: it’s a nice new bus, after all, and I won’t have to put up with the inconvenience for long, but I’m still annoyed.

~ by Gwydhar Gebien on September 12, 2019.

3 Responses to “New Model”

  1. I…think it just means buses and planes were not or are no longer accommodating laptop users. It’s probably not the best space to try such work. I’d have a slight edge, now, with a touch screen (compared to my previous computer). But, I’d still probably get motion sick and miss my stop or fail to hear something important. So, I will stick with crossword puzzles, maybe a little sketchbook action, if I feel creative, or actually talk with someone on the bus/plane, you know, socialize. 😀 Even us socially-phobic folks can do it, once in a while.

    • Ugh I hate having to talk to people on the bus: I hate being a captive to a conversion especially if the ride is going to be longer than fifteen minutes or so. But I find the bus to be a very good work space when I have enough room to work.

      Also, in the back of the bus the rear wheel wells stick up into the cabin: on the new models there are seats with 0 leg room because the wheel well is underneath them. Unless you’re traveling With a toddler no one can sit there anyway and it just barebones a wasted seat. With the inward facing seats they can still be on top of the wheel and have enough room for legs and bags.

      • There is no way working on a computer or other typing device on a bus is better than talking with the person in the seat next to you….at least, as long as you like that person enough to engage in talk. Now, I’ve had a mix…I’ve had days when I was stuck with annoying people who I just had to stomach until I could get off…and days when I’d strike up a very stimulating chat and then whimper when one of us had to get off and end the scene; if only I had another hour or could get them to contact me another way in such a short time.

        There is no way I could work on my laptop on a bus without having an accident or upsetting my balance/stomach.

        So, consider the “new” buses a brief opportunity to connect with someone or just transport you where you need to go (and hope you don’t have any problems with that much).

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