Wednesday, November 7, 2012

College Adventures: Stuck

I'm in college, but a number of my friends are still in my general vicinity.  One night I was talking to my boyfriend, Jack, and I told him that The Avengers was playing on the big screen on campus and that he was totally welcome to come.  My friend Avery was already coming over to see the movie as well.  She came over right after her school ended, I fed her, we got to hang out for a while, and then we went to pick up Jack at the front gate (it's a little intimidating be the "only" dude on an all-girls campus) so that we could go to the movie.

So we went to the movie and had the loveliest of times-- The Avengers was really good and even funny at times!  Sadly, Avery had to go home, so we all went down to the bus stop and waited with her until her bus came so that she wouldn't be kidnapped by creepers (not that that's too big of a problem in my area, but still, safety first!).  We got her on the bus with no problems and she let me know when she was back home.

But Jack was still there.  I told him that he was welcome to stay longer if he'd like.  And he did!  So I brought him back to my dorm and we watched cartoons and talked.  Finally, it was around 11 or midnight, so Jack decided that it would probably be best to start heading back to his own campus.  So I walked down to the bus stop again and we waited.

And waited.

And, you know, did a little more waiting.

We waited at the bus stop for ten minutes before we decided that maybe it would be a good idea to check the schedule.  Okay, it said 11:30, so no problem.  There was still a little bit of time.

11:30 rolls by and the bus is still not here.  That's okay, the buses tend to run a few minutes late.

We wait until 11:45.  Okay, something is wrong...

We check the schedule again and we realize the error of our ways: it said 11:30 AM.  Not PM.  The bus Jack was waiting for had stopped running around 6:30PM, which was when Jack arrived on my campus in the first place.  It wouldn't start running again until 5AM.  So, what were we going to do?

On any other campus this wouldn't be a problem.  Jack would have stayed in my dorm for the night, gotten up at 5AM or later in order to catch the bus (except that wasn't possible either-- the bus in question doesn't run on weekends... but I didn't know that at the time) and get back to campus, and everything would have been dandy.  But the rules on my campus are slightly different just because it's an all-girls school.  We have male visiting hours.  They last from 9AM to 2AM, after that, if you're caught with a boy in your room (not that our rooms are searched like in prison), you both get in trouble.  So Jack needed to get back, but we were running out of ideas.  He didn't know anyone on campus that had a car that could come pick him up, we didn't know of any other buses he could take (we know what they are now), and his family wasn't picking up (because they're normal human beings who are asleep at midnight).  We got the number for a taxi as a last resort, but Jack decided to call his family one more time.  And he finally got hold of his dad.  His dad came and picked him up from my campus and brought him back to his own campus-- it turned into a bit of a laughing matter and it wasn't really a big deal.

Fast forward to the very next week.  We decide that it's my turn to come and visit Jack at his campus.  I take the bus that drops me off right in front of Jack's dorm and everything is dandy.  We go across the river and explore that area, having dinner, and then coming back to Jack's dorm to watch some My Little Pony.  It starts to get late.  I look up buses that I can take and I find a route, so around 10PM, we're down at the bus stop waiting.  I get on the bus knowing that I'm looking for Snelling Avenue.  It's supposed to take maybe two minutes to get there on the bus.  But ten minutes pass and I haven't seen Snelling nor have I heard the bus driver call it out.  I decide to ask him.  Apparently Snelling passed a long time ago.  I must be tired, I didn't even hear it!  It turns out I was headed to Downtown Minneapolis in a bus filled with ready-to-party college students.  I was headed in the wrong direction.  So the very helpful bus driver tells me how to get myself turned around, letting me off in a very brightly lit area with a lot of police roaming around.  Nothing had happened, it's just that a lot of college students go out drinking on the weekends.  It's the thing to do, I guess.

So I get on the bus with the same number, but heading in the right direction this time.  I reach Snelling, I get off, and I head to the first bus shelter that I see.  There's no schedule for the next bus that I need.  I figure that I must be in the wrong place again.  By now, I'm fighting back tears because I'm scared and tired... so I call Jack and ask him if I could possibly come back to his dorm to figure things out.  Of course that's okay, so I head back and we go to the lounge where he and another friend are playing Magic: The Gathering.  It's a confusing game and I'm still panicking about what I'm supposed to do, so I hardly pay attention.

You're probably thinking, Jude, just spend the night and figure things out in the morning.  Yeah, ordinarily, I probably would have done that, but for the first month of school, I had class on Saturdays.  Bad luck.  So I needed to be back.  I decided to call my family and see if anyone was awake.  By sheer luck, my mom was up and just heading to bed.  She didn't sound very happy with me on the phone when I called telling her that I was stuck and that I needed help getting back to campus.

"Didn't you just go through this last week?" she asked.

"Yeah..."  Super embarrassing, even if I wasn't the one who was stuck on a foreign campus.

My wonderful mother pulled on a jacket, got in the car, and drove all the way to Jack's campus to pick me up and bring me back to my own campus.  She told me that she was having trouble getting mad at me, especially when I told her what had happened.  She was glad that I felt comfortable enough calling home and asking for help.

So, moral of the story, be really nice to your parents because they're awesome at fixing problems and being solutions.

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