My destination was Hayward, but my transit stop was Oakland. I decided to take Greyhound to Oakland, than the train to Hayward because I didn’t want to drive. After waiting for at least two hours, I stepped toward the side door of the bus and handed my ticket to the driver. He ushered me on the bus barely glancing at my ticket. I got in my seat, put my earphones over my ears, closed my eyes, and three hours later I was in Reno.
I was furiously boiling inside, to fine myself in Reno and not Oakland, but kept my cool. The bus driver apologized for not looking intently at my ticket and offered a six hours drive on another bus heading to San Francisco. It was a drive that would take me from Reno, back through Sacramento en route to San Francisco. I promptly declined and asked for a bus back to Roseville, Sacramento, where I left my car.
My money was reimbursed, and I got a free ticket with priority boarding back home. But it took me another three and a half hours back to where I came from.
The lessons I think I learned from this, besides discovering that I am not as smart as I thought I was – are these:
Not because the bus stops – you should get on it. Not because an opportunity presents itself – you should take it. Not because she’s got a nice pair of legs, you should date her. Not because he’s hot and drives Lamborghini you should fall for him. Some opportunities were never meant for you to take. They usually turn out to be another long ride from Roseville to Reno and back – not being able to achieve your goals. So, next time, when the bus stops, when she walks by, when he drives by, or when opportunity comes knocking – make sure it’s the right bus, the right girl, the right guy, the right opportunity. You don’t have to get on the bus because it stopped.
It’s not the end of the world if you took the wrong bus. Even though you got on the wrong bus, even though you made a mistake, even though you got in the wrong relationship, even though you took the wrong opportunity, it doesn’t have to be the end of the world. You can learn from your negative experience and turn them into positive life lessons. I have never been to Reno, so I took the two and a half hour window, before my next bus home, to do some site seeing, take pictures, enjoy a nice meal and complete the lyrics to a new song. So the next time you make a bad decision, don’t let it ruin everything, don’t sit around throwing a pity party, turn it around by doing something worthwhile. Don’t stop living – make new friends. Never forget – your times and seasons are in his hands.
It is never too late to start over. As long as you have what Andy Andrew calls “the proof of hope”, it’s never too late to get back in the the game. I got back on the bus and went home. But the next morning, I was right back at the station. I made sure, this time that I was boarding the right bus, the right train. I made sure I had the right address to where I was going in Hayward. By the end of the day I had accomplished my purpose for going on that trip. But I wouldn’t have, if I had said to myself – “I am too tired, too discouraged I didn’t do this yesterday, I wasted my time, it’s too late.” It is never too late to reach your goals – as long as you have breath – God is not finished with you yet!
Few pictures from Reno