Sunday, November 17, 2013
Vashon/Seattle Commute- The dynamics of commuting with exactly the same people every day
I was at a meeting in September and a professor of cultural studies (or something like that) was telling a story and she said, "...in the Pacific Northwest People show respect by giving you privacy..."
I have often thought of this since then. It is so true. The life of someone who commutes on Vashon is that you commute with the same 200 people every day. I suppose there might be tad more people than that, but generally it's true. There are many many many faces of Vashon Island people that I recognize because I see them on the bus, boat, ferry, etc. but for the most part I don't talk to them.
When you commute on/off of Vashon to Seattle you have some choices. Where you sit on the boat, what you do, if you talk etc are all part of the choices you make daily. There are people on the boat who play cribbage, who talk politics, who discuss their bikes, etc. There are others who will chat only with a selective friend or so. And then, there is the large majority of people who are quiet. Reading, sleeping, playing games on your phone are all acceptable.
Sean and I are the quiet commuters. We talk to each other and once in a great while we will talk to a friend (but seriously not much). It is our alone time or our couple time. I always have a book or magazine in my bag and move on.
Now that we know the faces of those we commute with there is an unspoken recognition that you are a reader or a quite rider. There are some random people we talk with for a minute...Joke about the weather, or comment about an overheard something or other...that is life with people you see every day. But in general I like the privacy as a way of respect thing. It works for me. It works for my commute.