It’s not that everyone talks to strangers on the bus in Germany (not at all actually) but over here it seems to me as if people completely shut themselves off when they’re on public transit. As a rough estimate, I’d say there are at least 90% of people on buses and trains who are using earphones and/or constantly tapping away on their smart phones. I do like music too and I am not too keen on making friends on the bus either but nevertheless, it is an irritating behavior for me since where I am from, people still read books and newspapers on their way to work – how old school of them, I know! 😉
Simon, one of our colleagues at INTERNeX, recently came into the office with a flyer in his hand. It said “Say HI on the bus” and obviously aimed at making people acknowledge other riders and interact with each other on public transit rather than listening to music and facebooking. There is this one bus driver in Vancouver who started this initiative and consistently asks his guests to take a moment and say “hi” to the person sitting next to one, see how their day is going and find a way to relate to him or her. Apparently, Simon had a blast on this bus ride chatting to random people and even singing songs with a bunch of strangers. Sounds like fun to me!! The bus driver’s last advice on the flyer is “Be good to yourself. Be kind to each other.” I think this whole project is a super cool idea, so maybe keep it in mind and wish someone a good day the next time you’re getting off the bus, you would make somebody happy and yourself too. 🙂
What is your experience with public transit in Vancouver? Is it different to where you are from? Feel free to leave a comment below!
Hope you’re having a nice Sunday!