[This is the fifth installment in a series I’m calling Ten Hours, about my trip with students to a college in upstate NY. These are a few moments of ten hours we spent on the bus that’ll hopefully give you a sense of the whole 36 hours we spent on the trip and about all the things rattling around in my brain. Enjoy!]
Everyone was exhausted.
The trip began at 6am, so we started tired.
Then we had five hours of travel and nine hours of activities followed by chasing kids around a hotel telling them to be quiet followed by late-night watch shifts followed by a 6 am wake-up call followed by a morning of activities before we got back on the bus.
The teachers were tired, the kids were tired, the grey landscape looked tired (more on that here).
But after three hours on the bus the executive decision was made to turn on music. Loud, soulful 90s R&B cascaded out of the bus speakers above our heads. Ms. D and I, seat partners and work friends, started grooving. We moved our shoulders, we bobbed our heads, we sang along to lyrics we didn’t totally know.
Some kids stared. Some kids grooved. The tallest, gangliest boy in the grade sang along to every single song. Except for Dancing Queen. His loss.
For a moment when the music turned on, I considered being annoyed. I was reading and wanted to finish the book I was borrowing from a friend. But the rhythms were infectious and, combined with the sugar rush of too many fruit snacks, Ms. D and I were on a roll.
The music pulled us all the way home and had me leaving the bus on a second wind that lasted me a good three hours until I collapsed into a serious sleep.