38 Special

Earlier this week, I went to the Please Touch Museum for a business meeting. (I joked with the woman at the check-in desk that I had been there dozens of times but never in a suit.) I decided to take the 38 bus, since it goes from a few blocks from my office to right in front of Please Touch.

Riding the 38 brought back memories of riding it often when Aaron used to go to Caring Center, which is also on its route. The 38 is actually one of the more interesting bus routes, as it spans from the Wissahickon Transfer Center all the way in the northwest to Independence Hall in the heart of the historic district. Along the way, it meanders through the Art Museum parking lot, gets close to the Philadelphia Zoo, and makes a loop on the doorstep of Please Touch. It also runs up the Ben Franklin Parkway, which is always a nice view, and cuts through some pretty run-down neighborhoods in West Philadelphia, like Mantua. As a result, it is of use to a whole spectrum of users: low-income folks who have few other transportation options, commuters with downtown jobs, and tourists going from one institution to another. (And businessmen with meetings at Please Touch.)

I had my nose buried in a business magazine for most of both trips, but every once in a while I would look out, and every time it was a different scene. I realize riding the bus may be inconvenient for some, but you ought to do it every once in a while just to mix it up.

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