Last Ride on 532

I put down my copy of Wealth of Nations as we began our descent into Phoenix. I decided to drink in the last bit of what was likely my last ride on the Route 532 Express Bus from Mesa to downtown. I resituated myself on the back bench, which seats five but rarely actually seats more than three, and took note of my fellow passengers.

My guess is that the median age was just north of fifty. At least two men had been asleep for most of the ride. One leaned precariously close to me several times, each time straightening up just before I was about to wake him. Even though there were thirty of us spread out over about 70 seats on the double bus, I like the back bench and this guy likes the side facing back seat, so we were closer than necessary.

Almost everyone had something to read. The guys who chat about “the game” and “the market” were not riding today. It is pretty common to see the Bible and the Book of Mormon. Paperback novels make up a good share of the selection as well. Newspapers and the occasional lawyer reviewing briefs make up the rest. Some just listen to music.

I will drive in tomorrow and am meeting some folks for drinks tonight. I start a new job on Monday that is not serviced by this Express Bus route. I’m planning to try riding a Local, but we’ll have to see. Also, today was a rare overcast day in Phoenix, Arizona. And maybe that added to my sentimentality, but I have to confess to mild feelings of melancholy over saying good bye to Route 532.

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