The world can seem a funny place at times. When we are fortunate enough to travel we enjoy the wealth of experiences that using public transport provides, are open to the possibilities for socialising and appreciate such things – as this blog highlights. It can even be exciting. When we’re back home, it feels like we don’t appreciate the same things in our own public transport system. Reading through some of the opinions on message boards related to public transport and talking to people outside the industry, I’d find it hard to believe that someone would write such caring things about the public transport network in the UK, particularly outside of London.
Yet it ought to matter to us and we ought to care more. The opportunities for social interaction that public transport provides should be part of things that make living in our cities interesting and exciting – why else do we live in cities if not to be closer to our fellow citizens? Of course it can be scary and unpleasant, but it can also be rewarding and reaffirming. May be we don’t talk up the positives enough to create a better sense of what it could be about, or that in a modern society where individual preferences and space are held to be a priority, we don’t want to mix with others. I hope we can learn to love the bus (and may be each other) a bit more.