The Four Seasons Journey - Short Commuting Story
Her lovely new house was on the outskirts of the town in a very green area full of trees, bushes and flowers. It was a perfect spot except it was far from the station. She couldn't drive so she had to rely on public transport to get to work in nearby city every day.
And the bus was late, as always. She was freezing at the bus stop hating it more with every passing minute. ‘I will be late for my train again!’ she thought. It was ridiculous - the bus should get her to the station 10 minutes before departure, plenty of time for a cup of coffee and a croissant. Except it never happened and on days like this she knew she will need to take the next train.
She liked to be prepared and she always planned for the worst case, so she knew her next train was only 10 minutes later but she didn't like it. This second train was a long distance one, always crowded and also quite often late.
She hated being late, even if it was late in her own world only, she just liked things running according to a plan. She knew she could rely on herself to stick to the plan but she couldn't say the same about bus drivers. The alternative however was very grim.
She couldn't possibly walk to the station, could she? It was a 45 minute long walk, while it was just 7 minutes on the bus!
She knew the route well as she walked it many times in the past when she was looking for her new house. However, it was happening on lovely summer weekends, when she wasn't in a hurry. She could enjoy the little houses and birds singing in the trees. It was really nice back then.
Still it was dark and cold right now. Mid December mornings were not the best time of the year for her. She wished she could stay in the bed longer instead of getting up even earlier for a walk. And how would she tackle the pathway through the woods, with a torch? What a ridiculous idea, definitely not for her.
The bus came eventually and took her to the town. She has got on a later train and managed to get to work in the end.
Days were passing by and she was standing on the same bus stop again - cold, cold, freezing cold and no sign of the bus. ‘If only I had a car’ she sighed. No, it wouldn't work, she couldn't drive. But if she could, it would be brilliant wouldn't it? No more shivering and she would always be on time. Dreams, sweet dreams...
The snow went down when she was on her way back from work. She managed to get on the bus to get home in the end but everything was massively delayed. Met office predicted even more snow to fall during the night what meant that the whole England will be totally paralysed.
Next morning the world was beautiful, pure white shimmering in the gentle glow from the street lamps. It reminded her the childhood, sweet moments of laughter and winter fun. She checked trains – surprisingly they were running without huge delays. One look at the streets covered with white fluffy layer told her however, that busses were not running for sure. They couldn't cope with a hint of white stuff on the streets so there was no way she could get a ride today.
‘Walking then’ she said to herself. And she actually was looking forward to it. The world was in such a peace and the beauty of the nature was astonishing. She put on her ski trousers and jacket and left her house. She was so enchanted with the weather and her memories that she has got to the station in no time. Well, it took her the same three quarters as usual, but they were full of joy instead of annoyance and feeling cold.
‘I shall do this again’ - she thought approaching the station.
The weather suddenly changed and all snow disappeared over the night. Next morning she managed to get up early enough for a walk to a station but her mood was far from cheerful. It was dark and freezing outside. The world was grey and wet again, the beauty of the white fluffy snow long gone. She forced herself to walk, watching her steps to avoid deep puddles and other muddy areas.
She didn't feel joy this time and she wished she was at the station already. 5 minutes through the estate, another 5 through dark woods, 5 more and under the bridge then a walk along the main street. Half an hour but felt like days. She finally got to the station completely disheartened and wet as the rain started pouring down while she was walking. ‘No way, I won't do this again unless the weather is good’ - she said to herself.
Winter days were passing by filled with delayed buses, freezing weather and overall doom and gloom. Luckily the spring came quite quickly and world was changing into more friendly place with every day. On one especially lovely morning, the idea of walking to the station instead of waiting for a bus seemed much more appealing. So she walked.
It was peaceful, relaxing and refreshing experience. It was a bit of a burden as she had to get up earlier but once she was on her way, she could free her mind. She wasn't walking every day because she loved her sleep even more than walk, but she managed to get to it at least twice a week.
She used this time for happy day dreaming or planning for the future. It was also good from health point of view – she used to sit at the desk all day so this morning walk was almost the only activity she had.
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To motivate herself to walk every day she resigned from the bus season ticket. She could always buy a daily ticket if she needed but she hoped it won't happen too often. The days turned into weeks, then months. Without even noticing it, the morning walks became part of her day. Very important part as they were bringing the peaceful joy and time for happy thoughts and phantasies.
Nothing was disturbing her when she was walking, struggles and challenges of the day had no access to her. It was her time to recharge the batteries, to rebuild depleted energy levels. At the point of approaching the station she was always full of beans and ready to face the day.
During these months she had to use the bus twice, when it was raining too heavy to walk, but she didn't enjoy those rides at all. Time was passing by, days became shorter, and was darker and darker in the morning.
One day she just realised that soon it will be too dark to walk and that the only alternative is to go by bus. She really didn't like this idea at all so she decided to think about it later. However, her boyfriend became concern about her safety and when she was just about to renew her train ticket, he said to her ‘It's getting dark in the morning sweetie, you cannot keep on walking. I'll buy you a bus season ticket’. She pondered it for a minute, then looked at him with love in her eyes and said ‘Honey, would you give up on something you love dearly, on something that lights up your days only because it's a bit dark outside? Just get me a proper torch.’