Please take my seat, if I manage to get one


How many of you living in town have gone to get that dreaded bus to take you to your 9am lecture and, after dragging yourself out of your only-too-comfy bed into a cold Lancashire morning to stand at the bus stop with the rest of the half asleep students, seen bus after bus after bus go flying past you? I’m one of the lucky ones. I live very near the bus station so nearly always get not only a seat on the bus, but a choice. And so, every morning I see crowds of students huddled around bus stops as I go hurtling past them on the bus only to see them again 15 minutes later, red in the face running late into our lecture.

I know what you are going to say: they should get up earlier and get a less busy, earlier bus. That would be a fair argument if it was just one or two buses which were just to full to pick them up. The truth of the matter is it is more like four or five that fly past every morning. Just how early are students expected to get up? Surely it would be easier for the bus service to be more regular in the busy morn- ing period and then we would all be on time without getting up before the sun rises?

I do not understand why this has not been rectified by the bus company as it is a daily reoccurrence. I always feel so guilty when I speed past and see everyone cold and disappointed that yet again they will be the late one who rushes into the seminar to face that disapproving look of their tutor who is blissfully unaware of bus situation in the morning.

Not only do I have a problem with the absolute lack of buses in the morning, always a ridiculously busy time, but also to the conditions whilst on the bus. When I first started catching the bus in Lancaster I noticed a strange hostility between the elderly residents and students; older people who got on the bus could often be heard mut- tering under their breath about these noisy, rude, lazy students who were filling up their bus. At first this just seemed a little bit uncalled for. They had just got a little bit grumpy in their old age. But having seen the treatment of the elderly on several occasions I am nearly as disgusted with students as they are.

Students seem to have forgotten general bus etiquette, such as giving your seat to the elderly. Apparently some students are unaware of this or are simply selfish and rude. On a number of occasions I have seen several older people, shopping and walk- ing stick in hand, struggling to stand as the bus speedily turns the corner whilst a youthful, walking stick-less student sits comfortably in their seat. I even once overheard a remark on this bus when this etiquette was brought into question in a conversation between students, “I paid £200 for my bus pass and they get theirs for free, why should I give up the seat when I’ve paid for it?”

This statement is ridiculous and I simply do not understand the logic of the speaker, but I do think this is how many students must feel given the treatment of the elderly on public transport. Evidently local residents ar going to be annoyed at the increased of students swamping their city and its services so we should at least show them some respect in the few years that we are here.

Then again, maybe if there were more buses running, us students would be more spread out and not have to clutch onto that precious seat we managed to nab before the bus drove off. It’s a novel idea, but it just might work.

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