Last year was Chloe's first year of school. We live in a small town and most kids walk to school if they are in town. We, being the protective parents we are, asked about a possible bus to take our beloved five-year-old to school, but we were rebuffed and given a map with a route that she could walk. Being a teacher, and knowing some of the teachers and knowing a couple who's kids attend the same daycare we were able to wrangle rides for Chloe all year. This year she has taken her bike most days, whether riding to school with a teacher and then riding her bike back to the daycare because I leave the bike before I go to work at the school, or walking. Either way, it has been stressful on this whole family making sure she gets home and yet meeting our own afternoon needs as employees.
Well, Chloe's Grandfather works for the school district. He has seen that many children have been picked up by the bus in town and he inquired with the bus garage as to why THEY can get picked up and his granddaughter cannot. Well, the bus people gave him some excuses and ignored him, but he mentioned it to his boss and low and behold there is a state statute or law or something that says if she is a member of this program...which she is...she needs to be given the option of riding a bus to school.
The next day we got called by the bus people saying, miraculously, they could give her a ride to school on the bus. Today was the first day she was able to do it. Her grandfather walked her to the bus stop to make sure she got on the bus and knew how to get there. This afternoon, knowing where the bus stop is and having my camera, I wanted to make sure she got off the bus alright and maybe get a picture of her first bus ride home. I still had dishes to do, so I figured I'd watch and go home before I picked the girls up, so no need to alert her to my presence.
So...while I was awaiting the bus a familiar pick up pulls in and parks behind me. It was my father-in-law come to make sure she made it to daycare ok. I sheepishly waved. He got out and we took station behind the vehicle and waited. Then one of the city guys showed up. Asking about why we were being suspicious. We explained and explained the camera and then we all three commenced to hide behind the vehicle as the bus pulled up. Three of us watched through the windows of the vehicle as the bus driver instructed Chloe to walk in front of the bus but where she could be seen. Then my daughter darted down the steps and to the front of the bus where she hesitated and finally ran. All the way to the daycare.
The three of us men congratulated ourselves on our well conducted nefarious plot to observe a little girl get safely off a bus and go to daycare.
Later we were to find out the little girl's grandmother had conducted a similar operation in her front yard to watch for the granddaughter's approach.
It takes a village and a village is what we have.