Thursday, September 26, 2013

One small door = large problems

It's been a busy few days!  But then, what else is new in my little world!?    :)

I've been trying to get as many school field trips as possible since so many of them are during the school days. 
In our district, all the 5th grade students from every elementary school take a trip to one of the local camps, about 40 minutes away.  They go for 3 days and so far I've been able to take and pick up most of them.  This means I have trips on Monday, Wednesday and Friday of each week.  It's a fun trip and the kids are always so excited to go AND to come back home!

Along with those field trips I now have 2 extra hours each week transporting elementary students from one school to 3 different ones for their music lessons.  Another fun trip and every extra hour is valuable.

Yesterday was just one of those days . . . the kind you know are around the corner . . . making you not want to round the corner!

Each semester we must do a "practice" evacuation drill on the bus.  Since my scheduling is so tight on time the only day I could get it done was a Wednesday (elementary starts an hour later that day so extra time between routes).  Yesterday we did our drill with the junior and senior high students.  It went off without a hitch and no one was late for class.  They were helpful and took things seriously.  Not the norm for that age of kids!

I then rushed home to inhale a sandwich before going back to take the kids to camp.  We had 2 busses of kids and 1 bus just for their luggage.  The trip itself was pretty routine until the way back.

As I was turning into the high school (just enough time to get there from the field trip) I noticed the back engine door of my bus flapping in the breeze -- not a good sight.  I had to continue to the school, which was about 2 miles away.  When I got there another driver and I got it closed and thought that was the end of that.

That's what we get for thinking!  Just as I had my senior high kids loaded and was leaving to go to the middle school I noticed the door swaying open again. 

Our rules are that if students are on board the bus we drivers are not allowed to step off the bus.  So this meant I had to go on to the middle school.  I radioed our main office and one of the assistant principals said he would meet my bus and help close the door.  Sounds easy . . .

But as he worked and worked we realized the latch was totally broken.  Transportation then had to send another bus for me to continue my route.  This meant off loading the senior high students to wait with the middle schoolers while they brought another bus.  This whole procedure took about 40 minutes.  Needless to say these kids were going to be late getting home.

And . . . since I go directly from dropping of the last high school student to picking up the elementary students it required transportation to send a substitute driver (and bus) to run that elementary route.

I knew my little kids would be confused and some would most likely be upset with the unannounced change.  I was right!

With so many really little ones and ones that don't speak English --- confusion abounded!

But I was able to radio the sub and let him know which student would be able to help him and so the driver was able to get through the route a bit easier.

And then came this morning --- over 60 little ones --- and their parents --- all waiting to see who and what bus were coming!  All with numerous questions! 

I had to smile as I reassured them that it was unavoidable and sometimes these things happen. And even though they weren't aware of the details -- the school was! 

I think they understood and those that didn't were being translated to as I drove away.

By this afternoon the latch should be replaced (I used a sub bus this morning = confusion) and we should be able to settle back into routine!

They may be small in size and not able to understand most of what I say -- but they know me and   they trust me and depend on me.  Kind of made me think about my relationship with God.  Many times I don't understand Him but I trust Him and depend on Him --- and know He'll never send me a substitute!    :)

One small little door ---- one so very important door!  Scripture tells us the doorway to heaven is narrow --- SUPER important!  

Who would have ever thought there were comparisons between driving a school bus and heaven?

If we look -- we'll see God everywhere!!!!

Until next time . . . where do you see Him?  Or are you even looking?                          Susan

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