This morning, I was a part of the huge delay on the Red Line coming north. First, there was a huge delay (1/2 hour or so) just before Garfield, and then we were told that we would have to get off of train and take shuttle buses to continue traveling north. So, all of us made our way over to State Street, where the buses were scheduled to pick us up. We were a huge crowd, because not only were we exiting the trains and moving en masse, but people who were getting on the train at 55th were re-routed to State Street as well, seeing as the entire Red Line (from 55th to Cermak) was shut down.
Well, I finally became one of the folks that made it onto a shuttle bus. The bus situation was pretty hectic as the bus driver was waved down as he was going to another bus route (from garage)—so he had no idea what was going on. So, now we’re packed on the bus and we make a stop at 47th where a CTA representative stood with some delay passes, which caused everyone on the bus to shout, “We want one,” and “Just pass the whole book to us” (she had been ripping off one at a time and handing them off to be passed to the rear). Now, everyone—myself included—complained, as we yelled things like, “C’mon now, either pass the whole book over or let’s move! It’s gonna take another hour if we sit here and get a pass for everybody!” So the rumblings continued for a couple of minutes, before a young lady at the front of the bus erupted with:
“Would y’all stop complaining?! I just found out this morning that three of my cousins did not wake up this morning! Y’all should be happy that y’all have breath today—That Jesus allowed y’all to wake up and have breath this morning! Three of my cousins are not here anymore! Are not going to be with their kids anymore! I just found that out this morning—and I’m still going to work!
“Every morning, all I hear on my way to work is complaining! People complaining about everything: about how the buses and trains aren’t doing this, about all this little stuff! There are so many more important things in our lives!”
One could hear the crickets chirping (if there, of course, had been crickets present). I mean, it got deeply quiet on the bus as she put it ALL into perspective for us. After the quiet, people began having dialogue like “Man, she’s right,” and “Wow, make you see things in a whole ’nother light, don’t it?”
It was a deep morning.