Tuesday, June 30, 2020

Time To Say Good-bye!

An early morning start to my work day has meant that I got to catch the sunrise as I stopped at the railroad tracks every morning.I looked forward to these views.

On March 20, 2020, I was blessed to get one more sunrise picture as I was on my way to work.
It later became apparent that this would be my last shot at the track on my way to drive the school bus.

As I think back to the many years of driving the bus, one memory is extra special, although there are many special memories. The first day that my granddaughter got on the bus for her first ride home. This Grandma could not have been happier. 

At the end of June 2019, one of the Moms decided that I needed to have my picture taken as well.Little did she, or even I, think that it would become a special picture. 

The following pictures are a few of images captured the last few days of work, back in March 2020, paired with some of my thoughts as I head into retirement .

For over a year, I agonized over the decision to retire from school bus driving. I knew I would have to make that decision sooner or later, but had a hard time with it. It got so bad that I was convinced that there was something wrong with me physically. Several visits to the doctor showed that everything was fine, but still I was constantly exhausted.

On December 6 I made the decision to work no longer than to the end of June. I immediately began feeling less tired. It seemed that the weight was lifting from my shoulders. Christmas came and went and I shared this news with some people, but couldn't make it totally public since I had not handed in my resignation.

Shortly into the new year, January 9 to be exact, I brought my letter of resignation to the school division office. When I walked out of there, it felt like the burden had completely left me.

I started a countdown to my last day of work. It was exciting to see the days and weeks go by. Then on March 16 we were told that schools would be closed for at least three weeks, due to Covid-19. So there went my countdown. All the excitement vanished, with this cloud of the unknown hanging over everyone's head. Before those three weeks were over, it became apparent that schools would not be opening again until September.

(This was my view from the driver's seat while waiting to start my route.)

So technically, I was retired, but in fact I was still an employee of Western School Division until the end of June. So, although I got to spend my time at home, I didn't really feel like I could close the Bus Driver chapter of my life.

As we say good-bye to the month of June, I also

say good-bye to 41 years of being a School Bus driver.

I have looked forward to this day, but in all honesty, I know I will miss the routine, my co-workers and the children. Yes, I will even look back and think of those who routinely stirred up trouble. Perhaps these children needed to cross my path to teach me greater patience. So June 30, 2020 will live on in my memory as the actual day of my retirement.

(The view I saw hundreds of times, when looking into the rear-view mirror,checking on the students.)

Thank-you to Western School Division for giving me employment all these years, but more than that, thank-you for allowing me to walk away with pleasant memories and a host of friends. Friends I would not have met, had I not had this job.

Retirement here I come!

I'm excited to see what God has in store for me from here on.


  1. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and a few experiences, complete with beautiful pictures, from the last year of your employment with Western School Division! Having been a colleague of yours for years, I can identify with many of your expressed thoughts. May your retirement be filled with much joy and with meaningful happenings. God bless you. From Marilyn

  2. Beautifully written and now I can say...Happy Retirement.
    41 years is a very long time...you will definitely feel differently now with a changed routine. Covid-19 saw to that...
    I love your photos from your bus and I imagine that the kiddos will miss you when school finally opens up again.

  3. So glad you had those 41 years of good employment, but you are going to love being retired! I pray God's blessing over you as you start this new chapter of your life! Enjoy! Celebrate!

  4. May God richly bless you in this new chapter of your life. I know you have so many memories from your many years of bus driving. I know you touched many lives during that time, also.

  5. Congratulations! Enjoy the time. 🎈

  6. God bless you on this, your official retirement day! I know it is a bittersweet day for you. Praying that God will bring some exciting and happy days ahead for you as you settle in to retirement and actually enjoy it!! Thank you for your service as a bus driver for all those years! You are a brave woman!!

  7. What huge news! I know how much you loved your job, and also know you will miss it, at least at first. But it also opens a new and exciting chapter of your life! Your sunrise photo is gorgeous! And I think you should collect all your stories of bus driving and publish a book. I think there has been no other book like it, and it is so interesting

  8. Forgot to say how much I love your new header!

  9. So nice to see all the bus pictures. Sounds as if you really enjoyed those 41 years. Happy retirement. Now you can enjoy retirement.

  10. What an achievement...to work somewhere for 41 years. Congratulations on your retirement. I hope you enjoy it all. It is so nice that you have pleasant memories to look back on. I totally enjoyed all the pics. I can just tell you were a wonderful driver...

  11. Oh what a wonderful post dear Ruthie!! You know, it didn’t even occur to me that the Covid thing would actually affect your retirement. And what a precious picture of you and Kai... I know she was so proud to have Grandma as her bus driver. You surely have touched so many young lives throughout those 41 years. God bless you and congratulations as you officially retire!

  12. Congratulations, Ruth! I'm sure your students loved being on the bus with you, and have many great memories. How great to be able to drive your granddaughter to school, as well. And now, a new phase of life awaits. I'll be retiring next June, Lord willing, from my teaching career.

  13. Retirement! There will be mixed emotions I'm sure...but oh the thrill is yet to come. Too bad, all us blogger friends can't throw you a party!!

  14. It's wonderful that ou an retire after 41 years with so many pleasant memories and so many friends. I hope retirement will bring you the same amount of joy and satisfaction.

  15. Congratulations on such a wonderful career! Love those photos of you!

    I hope your retirement includes years of good health and happiness, Covid free!

  16. Blessings on this new chapter of your life and congratulations on a job well done. Diane

  17. Such a long time at one job! My father worked for the same company for 55 years. A rarity, both of you.

  18. Great post... Congrats!!!!!! Job well-done!!!!!! You will be missed.

    Making those 'life decisions' isn't easy and can affect one's health... Glad you finally made the ultimate decision....

    You will look back on this time and this 'job' as one that you totally enjoyed... GREAT MEMORIES which will last forever!!!!

  19. Ruth, 41 years is a long time to be at any job, but especially one as stressful as school bus driver. I think you'll be energized and feeling well as you keep busy in your retirement. You've amassed many memories, and now it's time to make different ones. Good Luck to you!

  20. Congrats to you! 41 years and you agonized on if you should retire! I agree, you should write a book. Enjoy the next chapter of your life.💖

  21. What a blessing you were to those children all those years! And making the decision must surely have been so hard on you, but I'm thankful that you finally were at peace with the decision. I'm sorry that you did not get to finish out your last year as you had planned, but you will always have those special memories with you! May the Lord bless you richly as you embark on your new retirement journey! With love to you dear friend!

  22. i know for me ... there are so many bus drivers ... who have checked in, in my mind and will never leave my heart .. they ... well there is a saying about "hand prints or heart prints" and it is so true .. you will never forget them ... i would think u r in that boat as well .. i bet you have touch so many folks lives ... ones you might not know about ...but never fear ... know your kindness, love, and respect ... i know it. what a great privileged you did have ... to be allow to care of these young adults. ( ;

  23. Tiina HildebrandSep 5, 2020, 1:49:00 PM

    Just today, I discovered your blog, Ruth. You present relevant truths, fun stories, and absolutely beautiful pictures! Thank you for sharing your heart. We wish you belated congratulations on your retirement! Drop by anytime if you'd like to take some farm photos. :)


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