Monday, February 22, 2010

Traveling with Passes for No Beans

I’ve been on a practicum for the last three weeks, which means being on a more regular schedule than I’ve been used to in a long, long, long time! But for some reason, I’ve been doing better with the schedule than I expected. I am a night owl who has been getting up with relative ease about 5 in the morning to drive/ride the Express in. About midday, I am lagging a little bit, dreaming about siesta, but not as much as I thought I would. I’ve also been getting to sleep early. So far….

Due to furloughs and President’s Day, I haven’t worked a full 5-day work week yet.

The practicum has me going between two office locations, one out in Aina Haina and the other in town, right across from the Capitol. The drive to Aina Haina is far but not too bad as it’s pretty much a straight shot mostly on the freeway with free ample parking on site. There is no parking at the downtown office so I have been taking the bus when I need to go to that one. The Express comes in about half hour intervals with a stop right at the end of my street, a four-minute walk.

I’ve explored downtown a little so far and found three nearby Starbucks, an ‘Umeke Market outlet, and a Jamba Juice. NO COFFEE BEAN & TEA LEAF; they should rectify this soon, as well as open a location in my neighborhood. I’ve settled for Starbucks’ Caramel Apple Spice twice already. It’s what kept me warm in just above freezing weather in the OR winter; it works just as well in the brisk breezy Hawaii. With ‘Umeke, at least I know where I can grab a healthy meal on days that I don’t bring a home lunch.

Oh, that’s another thing; I’ve started eating healthier in a roundabout way. I decided I would bring lunch from home for most days and made a trip out to the market. I figured making salad would be easier than cooking a meal and portioning it out. So I’ve been making salads for lunch. Someone complimented that my salad looked good.

And thank you for praying over a bus pass for me! Background: the U-Pass [discounted bus pass program for university system students] is now automatically included in tuition except for those enrolled in the Outreach College. O.C. students have to opt-in the program for $125. The practicum course I’m in is listed under the O.C. When I first went to validate my ID, this is what the girl at the window had told me.

I’ve been paying for bus passes out of my own savings but didn’t have enough this semester. Mom decided she would pay it this time. I went in last week to get the pass. The girl at the window checked my registration status and put the pass on my ID. While she did that, I took out the money, ready to pay. The girl looked at me, saw the money and said that it was included in the tuition. I asked if she was sure so she checked again and repeated that I was paid up.

So, I have a U-Pass! And Mom, who broke her phone was able to pay for a replacement. On the way home, I thought maybe I should have told the girl that I was an O.C. student just in case. I was confused at the window and didn’t think of it then. Maybe the SoA made some kind of inclusion deal? I don’t know. My friend said not to worry about it since I was ready and willing to pay; it would be the girl’s mistake. What do you think?

Thank God for the blessing! I am sure making use of it this semester.

What has God blessed you with recently?

[Photo: The approach of the express bus!]