My visually impaired friend has often bemoaned the fact that buses drive off without him, despite him waiting at a bus stop. Over the weekend, I experienced some of his frustration. The Park and Ride that I’ve used for 2 years or more has undergone a change; instead of paying at a barrier, and having almost coach like buses, I found no barriers, and no special buses. I approached a bus waiting on the 'wrong' side of the road and inquired of the park and ride. He said, this is it; a regular bus. I asked if he would wait a minute whilst I got my friend and his guide dog. I was advised they had to keep to a schedule. As my friend and I, and his guide dog, tried to cross the road to the bus, which was not stopped near the crossing, the driver pulled away. How nice of him. We had to wait 15 minutes for the next bus. We were dropped in an unfamiliar spot which was quite a walk to the shops.

On the way back, we trekked to the stop and when we were within 10 feet, I saw the driver close the bus doors. I waved at him and indicated that we wanted the bus but he drove off. How nice! Now, admittedly we weren’t at the actual bus stop, however it would have taken us a minute at most to get on the bus and be seated ready. Due to the driver’s impatience, we then had to wait 30 minutes for another bus. That’s the last time I use that Park and Ride, and in future if we fancy a day out at the shops, I’ll go to Cribs Causeway in Bristol.

It’s not just the buses, either; it’s endemic. People walk in to us, people blatantly ignore us in shops, and worse; some people speak to me as if I’m somehow retarded because I’m out with a visually impaired person. The other side of the coin is those that think the dog is cute, and that gives them permission to stop us in our tracks to fuss the dog, sometimes even interrupting our conversation. How rude. On Saturday, one man jumped out at us and even blocked our way because he wanted to fuss the dog. I asked him to leave the dog alone because he was working and the man was quite rude. Others stare at us as if we’re from some freak show. Quite honestly, I’m sick of it! Why can’t people just leave us alone, treat us like anyone else, and let us get on with our shopping in peace. I’m not asking for special treatment, just to be left alone.

Work has been manic and I’m counting the days until the Easter break. 6 more work days after today – told you I was counting lol.

On the home front we’ve had an email from my ex bemoaning the cost of renting. Who knew renting was costly? Oh wait, because of him I’ve been renting for almost 8 years! Let’s just say that when I met him I had a mortgage on a small house and quite a bit of money in the bank thanks to a generous redundancy package. Now I have neither. Onwards and upwards… :)

Enjoy the rest of the week, it’ll soon be Friday which is the best day of the week as far as I’m concerned.