The Student News Site of Flintridge Sacred Heart

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The Student News Site of Flintridge Sacred Heart

Veritas Shield

The Student News Site of Flintridge Sacred Heart

Veritas Shield

Hey, no slander to the school bus!

Claire Xu ’24
This article is dedicated to my bus driver Marilyn, pictured above, who has been my bus driver for the past three years.

“You’re a senior and you’re still taking the bus?” is a question I hear ever so often. “That’s so embarrassing.” 

When people say this, I don’t let it affect me because, truth be told, despite having my driver’s license, I love taking the bus. I started riding the bus in second grade and don’t have any regrets. Don’t believe me? Here are five reasons why you might want to consider becoming a bus rider.

1) It makes you feel calm 

What better way to start your morning than by taking in the picturesque scenery on your route to school on a warm bus? Palm trees sway lazily to the rhythm of the breeze while snow glistens on the San Gabriel Mountains. And what better way to end your day than by hopping on the bus and dozing off on the way home? With your headphones on, you can DJ your own end-of-day soundtrack while enjoying the peaceful atmosphere of the bus, giving you time to reflect on life. Riding the bus is my daily relaxation, where I decompress and enjoy the best naps. Somehow, the moment we reach my stop on the way home, the bus stop has this magical way of gently nudging me awake from my nap, every time, without fail.

2) You’re productive 

If you’ve ever felt too tired to study for an upcoming test or complete homework, don’t worry—you’ve got the bus. It’s your best friend for those last-minute study sessions where you can review your notes and flashcards. When I ride the bus to FSHA, I arrive roughly twenty minutes before school starts; on late starts, it’s thirty minutes beforehand. This early arrival not only ensures my punctuality but also gives me time in the morning to prepare for my classes or complete other tasks. During my junior year, I remember using the extra time I had in the morning to seek help from math teacher Mr. Kirk Nishiyama (Nish). I would also go to the library in the morning to study independently or review certain topics with friends. Overall, I found getting to school early on the bus really helpful and it is definitely a productive way to start the day. 

3) It’s eco-friendly

This one is a given, but definitely worth noting! Taking the bus is a sustainable way to reduce carbon emissions and protect the environment. According to Seventh Generation, an eco-friendly American company, “each school bus eliminates 36 cars on the road.” By choosing the bus, you’re not only reducing your carbon emissions but also helping to lower your carbon footprint and protect the environment.

4) It’s fun socially

Riding the bus gives you the opportunity to mix and mingle with students from different grades. While riding the bus at FSHA these past three years, I’ve been able to forge friendships with both upperclassmen and underclassmen. Even with our different grade levels, we’ve bonded over our bus conservations, exchanging advice and support. I look forward to bus rides because I can kick start my day with friends or unwind after school by chatting with them.

5) You get to enjoy additional perks 

On my first day as a sophomore bus rider, Marilyn, the driver, was among the first to welcome me into the FSHA community. She was wearing a warm smile and greeted me kindly. Since then, she’s become a friendly face that brightens my day. 

When recounting how we got close, Marilyn said, “You have a real good personality and you can pretty much get along with everybody. When you arrived on my bus you came to me and talked more to me than probably a lot of girls on the bus and you’re a really friendly person.” 

Marilyn is always there to lend an ear when I need to talk. She cracks jokes often and is always willing to go out of her way to help me. Once, when I was late to the bus stop, she saw my mom and me frantically backing out of our driveway. Even though the bus had already departed, she stopped and let me on. She has also met and petted my dog Kelsey, a cute mini goldendoodle, numerous times when my parents have walked her to the bus stop during their morning walks.

“Marilyn feels like talking to a friend. She shares personal stories that have made me feel closer to her,” Claire Xu ‘24 said. 

And even if you aren’t lucky enough, like I was, to have a bus driver as wonderful as Marilyn, you can still enjoy free pizza, cookies, donuts and other treats that FSHA occasionally provides to all bus riders.  

If you aren’t a bus rider already, what are you doing? Sign up immediately. As they say, “sit back, relax and enjoy the ride.”

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About the Contributor
Madison Wuu
Madison Wuu, Editor-in-Chief
From her role as editor-in-chief to her creative pursuits on our YouTube channel, Madison Wuu is always exploring new ways to express herself and share the stories of others. She began writing for the Shield during her sophomore year and later became an associate editor in her junior year. In her free time, Madison enjoys climbing, listening to music and watching movies with friends.

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