Wednesday, September 30, 2009


I rode bus #16. I was 5 the first time I stood at the end of the lane watching the big yellow bus roar across the bridge down the road. The big doors opened and there was Louie all smiles for this shy child.

I rode that bus for 12 years. All 12 Louie drove the bus. He saw us from mere babies to young adults. From fluffy petticoats to blue jeans. From hating all boys to kissing Dickie Neff on the front seat in first grade. I haven't calculated the number of days I saw Louie, but the number would be high enough to constitute commonlaw marriage in some states.

Louie is gone now. I wonder if he knew the impression he left on those small children who passed through that folding door. We certainly didn't undersatnd the loving care he gave to us, the responsibility he shouldered driving a bus full of rambunctious kids from home to school and back again. How many sick children did he nurse? How much gum did he scrape? How many fights did he referee? How many losts odds and ends did he accumulate? How many days was he feeling under the weather and was still there for us?

I never saw Louie after I graduated, but I do still think of him once in awhile. Wonder if I will ever impact lives in such a simple manner as had that dear man? I certainly hope so.

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1 comment:

Janet said...

My bus drive was Russell Barklow. I think he drove until I was about high school age. He always had a wonderful smile in the morning and a sweet good-by in the afternoon. He also attended my church, so I could see him there, too. I still see him sitting there on "his" pew, always with a sweet word and a twinkle in his eye. He loved to widdle and I still have a wood dog and shoe that he gave me. Sweet memories! thanks for jogging them, Pam!