Category Archives: First Buses

Another change in the work life

No, please dont get all concerned, I’m not losing my job, or even changing my job at present (would need a good acting/modelling offer to do that), just a few things changing with my working life.

The first of those actually happened yesterday, the system we use at work got changed, hopefully for the better, but I think its fair to say its hard to say on the basis of just one day, but seemingly everything worked, so fingers crossed…?

However, the one I’m really going to notice starts next week, when the working hours I’ve just got used to, after 3 months (first 3 months were on different training hours) of working from 12 till 8 during the week, all get changed. Fine, not massively for me, I’m going to be working 11 till 7 instead, but fine, I’m going to miss that hour in bed of a morning, all the same. I know, I get it back at the other end of the day, so I doubt I will lose much sleep overall, but fine, getting up at 6.20, instead of 7.20 is still going to hurt a bit! No, Saturday doesnt change at all for me.

There is a ‘swings and roundabouts’ thing that will happen that will help though. Finishing an hour earlier will mean the bus service home wont be as spaced out as it is now, in fact it will still be 1 every 20 minutes at that point, instead of trying to catch the first one for 30 minutes, and the last one for an hour. Given my experience of the 7.42 on a Friday, that is going to be a good thing. The bad thing, being seriously blonde, I changed my starting time by an hour, but left my 30 minute break at the same time, so now the first half of the day is going to be very long, the second part pretty short, but I’m sure I will live! That might be changing fairly soon, with luck, anyway.

Oh fine, the bus situation. No, I’m not going to miss getting the 8.12 bus from Bradford to Huddersfield 3 times a week, formerly 4, as the punctuality record of that bus is awful. In truth, I think its arrived in Huddersfield, on time, about 4 or 5 times in 3 months! I think I’ve missed a bus that runs 12 minutes after that bus is due in town more times than that in the same period! Yes, some of it is First Buses fault, the poor driver has a 4 minute allowance between scheduled arrival time in Bradford, and leaving time to come back again, so even if he’s a couple of minutes late, never going to happen. Thankfully the ones I will be getting have a better turnaround time, so all should, should be fine! Famous last words, I know, but…

Alright, the video. What I could say is that I never want to appear in the ‘diary’ at work (no, its not a diary, but it works for the song), but inevitably, I almost certainly will. Well, unless I get turned into a robot, or something, then maybe not lol? 😉

For those who remember Alison Moyet in Yazoo, in the 80’s, this might come as a shock, but yes, its her. Yes, she’s lost a lot of weight, for sure, congrats to her for doing so.

Going head over heels

So fine, let me just say before I get started, that in an ideal world, I’d be covering the women’s protests today, but after 3 political postings, that might be pushing my luck too far, especially if I do happen to have any right wing readers here, so lets give it a miss, and settle for a short piece about why you’re getting a blog on a Saturday, when you wouldnt normally!

Thursday evening, as seems far too often the case with First buses of late, the 8.12 from Bradford was running late. Badly enough that I thought I would have missed my normal bus home, but thankfully not late enough (unlike twice in the last couple of weeks), that I would at least get a bus that runs 12 minutes after that is due into Huddersfield, if I ran. So I did!

In fact (unfortunately as it happens), my normal bus hadnt gone, despite being nearly 5 minutes late, though ironically the one after it (there are three buses in about 6 minutes, then nothing for 30. Yes, you tell me, though they go in different directions after getting out of town) had already gone. So I increased my speed, as much as a woman of my age can do (which isnt much!) to try and get it.

What I didnt notice until I was pretty much on top of them, was a group of roughly dressed, very drunk men stood at one of the interim bus shelters. So fine, I moved out slightly to avoid them. Snag was, as I was going past, one moved across towards me, and the next thing I knew, I felt my ankle tapped, and the inevitable happened, I went forward, less than gracefully, landing on the pavement with a thump. One of the others, to be fair, did ask if I was OK, but given it was his friends that had done it, I gave him nothing more than a glare.

I tried to get up, and to my delight, I could. My left knee was tender, my right knee hurt like hell, but I could walk. Thankfully, the bus driver had waited for me, so I got to the bus, got on board, and got home. In truth, the right knee didnt look as bad as I thought it might, but it wasnt a pretty sight, all the same. Dave helped to patch me up, took one of the painkillers I had in my bag, and survived.

Yesterday, given the fact I could walk of sorts, and I could flex my knee of sorts, I did what I typically do under those circumstances, I went to work. Yes, it still hurt a lot, but I had some mobility, so…in truth, I’d decided I’d get the bus into town, see how that went, and then take the next step from there. Seeing I hadnt ‘broken down’ completely, I carried on.

Fine, in these days of social media, a few people already knew by the time I got to work. I reported that in the 0.001% chance of a fire alarm going off, I wasnt going to be able to do the stairs on my own, fine! In truth, when I didnt have to move, it wasnt too bad, but everytime I had to stand up, sit down, and the like, yes, it hurt, a lot! So, after much discussion about work today, mainly involving whether it was the best thing to do, I agreed on a compromise. I didnt want to take it off as sick leave, because as things were at the time, I could get to work, I could do my work, but it wasnt easy! Equally, I didnt want to wake myself up at 6.00 this morning, find out the knee was in no fit state to go to work, and not be able to get back to sleep.

So fine, compromise. I had built up a little bit of flexi time at work, so I took today off against that. Fine, I am now behind slightly, but I will catch up in time, might just take a few weeks. In truth, by now, tonight, it might be starting to improve. And yes, it probably wasnt bad enough that I couldnt have gone to work today, if I had to. But sense prevailed, and I never had to ask myself that question!

Let me lastly add, for those thinking otherwise, this was not a Trans related incident. I heard one of them (probably my assailant) say something about a lady running as I started to pass them, and it just developed from there. No, they just thought it was smart to trip up a running lady, for the fun of it! And people wonder why I dont fancy men lol! No, I know, most men wouldnt do that, but…

Right, as songs, and videos by Abba go, this is one of the lesser known, later songs. Doesnt make it a bad song, just saying…?

The delights of bus travel?

One of the hazards of being a non driver, is that you’re vulnerable to the whims of public transport, and the awful service they provide far too often. I’ll stand up and say that this rant isnt helped by the fact that First buses are putting up their fares around here on Sunday, despite the fact that the service they provide has deteriorated badly over the last few weeks. The number of cancelled buses on the routes up towards here, and Almondbury of late, just disgraceful. And then to rub it in by putting up their prices too…

Yesterday afternoon was a fine example of just how awful their service is. Having got out of work 30 minutes earlier than normal, it would be fair to assume that I would get home 30 minutes earlier than normal too, right? Wrong, I actually got in 10 minutes later than normal, despite the earlier start!

It started badly when I arrived at the Bradford bus station at 4.15, to find the 4.15 bus was already gone. Fine, if I’d seen it pulling out or something, then OK, but no, this was ‘gone’! No problem, another bus due in 10 minutes, so I’ll get that. Well, I might have done, but basically the screen counted down the minutes from 10, to showing as due, but the bus never showed. Finally about 4.30, after 5 minutes of showing as due, it disappeared off the screen, like the bus, never to be seen again!

The 4.35 eventually turned up about 4.33, but given there was 2 sets of customers waiting to get on the bus, we finally pulled out at 4.40, pretty full. So therefore we crawled all the way to Huddersfield, picking up, and dropping off passengers until we got to Huddersfield about 9 minutes late. I know, you’re thinking thats not too bad, but its meant to have a lay over of a few minutes in Brighouse, which never happened, which counteracted the delay somewhat.

But anyway, it gets better! I walked around the corner to get a bus up to where I live, to find the 5.24 was due anytime (only about 10 minutes late), and that the 5.34, 5.44 and 6.04 were all cancelled. The 5.54 was running, but at that point was running a mere 18 minutes late! Oh, the 5.24 never appeared either! On top of that, the 5.39, and 5.49 to Almondbury were also cancelled!

In the end, I walked part of the way home, using a bus (that I had to pay a fare for, as its a different company) to get me up the hill, but that was full, and I needed to stand, because First are so useless!

Seriously, I couldnt recommend First buses to anyone, especially the Huddersfield service, though I gather the service in Leeds is equally bad. And they want to increase the fares, but I doubt it will improve the service.

OK, in their defence, today, everything worked perfectly coming home, and because the 4.24 was running about 8 minutes late, I actually got home early! The bus I should have caught, running 7 minutes late!

I know, I know, but I’m 58, have tried driving lessons 3 times when I was much younger, failed miserably, so its never going to work now!

Fine, rant over!

The video, sums up the difference between yesterday, and today, I guess?

If you want to know how girls talk?

Yes, I know, shock horror, this old lady is contemplating doing something disgustingly modern, and getting herself a mobile phone! No, dont panic, its not going to be one of those ghastly smart phone things that does everything but launch nuclear missiles, its going to be the most simple thing I can find, but even so, me, and a mobile phone, gasp!

Equally, no, its not something I’m looking forward to doing with joy, only with pure practicality, believe me. But given I will, in 3 weeks time (starting 31st), be starting to work hours where 4 days a week, I will finish at 8.00, or just before, so in a security sense, I think a phone is a wise move. I know, I worked in Leeds until 10.00, and never bothered with one, but that was in the city centre, and well, this place is a little way outside of there. Its still a main(ish) road, and well lit, but there arent going to be a lot of people about at that time of night, so… Funnily enough, I know what that area was like 40, or 50 years ago, and believe me, you wouldnt have got me going anywhere near it then. But yes, its changed for the better, a lot!

Also, as I’ve discovered, though First buses are more reliable than Trans Pennine Express, thats not hard, and they arent perfect, so, being able to let work, or home know, if I have issues…

To be truthful, I have seen one in an Asda across the road from work, that costs £5, makes calls, presumably sends text messages, and beyond that, I really dont care! But yes, I will be putting the minimum amount on it, as rarely as I can get away with it, and…I certainly wont tell anyone that doesnt need to know, what the number is! I know, but I dont want my life controlled by my phone. Might enjoy being controlled, but not in that way lol!

Believe me, I certainly wont be glued to it, as the vast majority of people seem to be nowadays! Equally, believe me, if it wasnt for security, and safety, I wouldnt be getting one anyway!

Right, video time. Double treat tonight. Firstly, the original video, featuring the brilliant group, Rockpile, though for complex contract reasons, it was released as by Dave Edmunds. If you want the details, type the group name into Wikipedia lol!

But OK, to prove he can still do it (or could 8 years ago at least), here’s Dave sounding great live!