I suffered a major setback on my first day without a car due to a case of cockiness. Things had gone too darn well on my farmer’s market trip with my 2-year-old daughter, Carolyn. I bought as much produce as I could carry, which I promptly turned into a week's supply of baby food. We had breakfast. We made friends. We danced to the free live music.
My mistakes, which set me back by an hour and 15 minutes, were mere learning experiences. Time consuming learning experiences.
My first lesson — Sometimes, buses other than the one you need run along the same route. Always, always check.
Lesson two — Studying your bus map is not a sign of weakness. This is not New York City. People will not mistake you for a tourist. You will not be mugged.
Lesson three — If you have to chose between waiting 40 minutes for your bus home or walking the last mile with an exhausted toddler, for goodness sake, wait. Ice cream will not help. Carrying her will not help. Endless repetitions of "Frosty the Snowman” will help you only briefly.
We spent the rest of the day close to home. I’m hoping the trauma of the trip wears off enough so Carolyn doesn’t begin to fear the bus. After all, we need to ride it, a lot